The Gamers8 Riyadh Masters Group Stage bids goodbye to Team Liquid, Tundra Esports, TSM, and Deboosters. The next phase begins with the top 6 fighting for the $1.5M prize.
The Group Stage for Gamers8 Riyadh Masters is over and we saw some interesting results. The Stockholm Major champions OG tops Group A, and a reformed Team Secret leads Group B. The rest of the teams performed well to secure the Quarter-Finals. However, we witness a couple of surprising upsets with Team Liquid, TSM, and Tundra Esports out of the tournament.
Here are the teams that secured the top 6 at the Gamers8 Riyadh Masters:
- OG - Top 3
- Team Secret - Top 3
- RNG - Top 6
- NGX - Top 6
- PSG.LGD - Top 6
- Team Spirit - Top 6
Group A: Team Liquid exits in last place
This $4 million tournament is particularly exciting because of a lineup that looks like a mini-TI. But the return of retired TI champion, Anathan "ana" Pham was the cherry on top. Fans were excited to see him compete once again, even for a third-party tournament stand-in stint. But without key player Lasse "MATUMBAMAN" Urpalainen, Liquid fell short of its DPC form. The team did have great games here and there, but they couldn't secure any series win in the Group Stage. With a final score of 0-2-2 in Group A, Liquid dropped to last place at Riyadh Masters.
Another upset is seen with the Stockholm Major runner-ups, TSM being the 2nd team eliminated from Group A. They had a powerful performance during the Major, only to be stopped by OG. But the team showed lackluster performance in the Group Stage of Riyadh Masters, with 3 losses and a win. This could also be expected as they had a disappointing run in the recent DPC season, missing out on the Arlington Major.
The new generation of OG, known for being consistently strong, places first in Group A. This is the squad's first LAN experience with Mikhail "Misha" Agatov as he successfully arrived in Riyadh with no travel issues. With this placement, OG secures the top 3 at the event.
Nigma Galaxy (NGX), as per usual, are fed with the LAN buff and they're showcasing great plays. This is also NGX's first LAN appearance with Syed "SumaiL" Hassan as their pos 1. With an intimidating TI-champion lineup, NGX secured 1 win and 3 draws in style, placing the same as the Chinese region's top-seed, Royal Never Give Up (RNG).
Group B: Team Secret shows impressive chemistry
Secret came to the Riyadh Masters without their pos 3, Daryl "iceiceice" Xiang. But with Roman "Resolut1on" Fomynok standing in, the team is performing exceptionally well. Secret scored back-to-back series wins in the Group Stage, defeating Tundra Esports and Deboosters convincingly. But their shocking victory came in a series vs the strongest Chinese team, PSG.LGD. Something in Riyadh's air just built Secret differently as they completely outclassed the TI10 runner-up.
Their victory against PSG.LGD also goes down in history to be one of the biggest stomps with a 9-44 kill score. Team Secret successfully secures the top 3 of the tournament as they place first in Group B.
Fans also got to see the highly anticipated TI10 finals rematch between PSG.LGD and Team Spirit. But in contrast to the match in October 2021, we saw PSG.LGD take down Spirit with ease. The Chinese powerhouse scored 2nd place behind Secret, followed by Spirit in 3rd place. Tundra Esports suffered a performance loss with Neta "33" Shapira missing from their lineup. The team only scored one series win against Deboosters and lost the rest. Together with Deboosters, Tundra Esports sat at the bottom of Group B and exit the tournament.
A hefty prize even for the lowermost
Due to the massive prize pool and a small number of teams, even those who exit early earn a ton of prize money. In last place, Team Liquid and Deboosters bag $100K USD. Meanwhile, the 7th-8th placers, Tundra Esports and TSM bring home $150K USD. These are nothing near normal prize money for those who place bottom, even for a Dota 2 Major. The only similar prize distribution for last place is during TI10, which is the largest esports tournament in history.