A rather underwhelming exit by Talon Esports at Riyadh Masters 2023 after Team Liquid decimated them in a swift 2-0.
Talon Esports has been eliminated from Riyadh Masters 2023 after being defeated 2-0 by Team Liquid. The Southeast Asian team has had an incredible lower bracket run throughout Riyadh Masters 2023 playoffs. They have beaten the odds by eliminating goliaths 9Pandas and Gaimin Gladiators in decisive fashion. However, something seemed to change during their rematch against Team Liquid at the July 30 Lower Bracket Final.
Team Liquid quickly dispatched Talon 2-0, especially in the second game where they utterly decimated their opponents. That said, in light of a difficult year for Southeast Asian Dota, Talon managed to carry the weight of the region by being the only SEA team with the most international achievements in 2023. They do so once again by placing third at Riyadh Masters, bringing home a hefty prize of $1.7 million.
Not the Talon-Liquid rematch we expected
Just a few days ago, Talon and Liquid fought at the Upper Bracket Semifinals where they engaged in a tight base race that would put viewers on the edge of their seats. However, the same cannot be said when they met again for a rematch at the Lower Bracket Final. Talon was not able to come up with any solutions to level the playing field against Liquid. In the second game, Liquid overran Talon in just less than 25 minutes with a final score of 20-4.
It was evident Talon did not show the same level of prowess they had in previous series. Liquid themselves seemed to have figured out Talon's number and brought themselves to the next level with crisp gameplay.
In a post-series interview, Liquid captain Aydin "iNSaNiA" Sarkohi attributed his dominant victory over Talon to the lower bracket buff. He added, "I just think we play better when we're on the lower bracket. I think when we have the comfort of like you know... being in upper, we just don't play as well."
Team Spirit awaits for Liquid's return at the grand finals
As we close the book on the Talon-Liquid rematch, we now look toward to yet another rematch at the Riyadh Masters 2023 Grand Finals: Team Spirit versus Team Liquid. Just the other day (July 29), Team Spirit took Liquid down 2-1.
It appears that Team Spirit's TI-form is resurging on the back of an outstanding performance throughout Riyadh Masters thus far. Last year, they also managed to reach Grand Finals at Riyadh Masters 2022, but lost to PSG.LGD. Will they be able to win it all this time? Or will Team Liquid finally break away from the second place curse? Find out soon at the Riyadh Masters 2023 Grand Finals.