Comebacks, reverse comebacks, buybacks, and ultra late-game fights. Here’s a summary of the epic TI winner showdown between Tundra Esports and Team Spirit.
Around 70,000 viewers flocked to BetBoom's official channels to spectate The International winner showdown between Team Spirit, TI10 champions, and Tundra Esports, TI11 champions. The BO3 series took place in the ongoing $100K USD BetBoom Universe Episode I tournament that pits top European teams together.
In the Upper Bracket of the Playoffs, the Eastern European and Western European teams squared off in a close contest and the final game did not disappoint. While the first two games were convincing wins by both sides, the third and final game saw comebacks, reverse comebacks, buybacks, and ultra late-game fights. But in the end, Tundra Esports prevailed. Here's a summary of this mind-blowing series.
Nine does it again! The midlaner picked an unconventional Centaur Warrunner mid
The first game kickstarted with a smooth laning phase for Spirit. But Tundra, as per usual, is immaculate at sustaining discipline and utilized space to rake up gold. With farm efficient heroes such as Naga Siren and Doom on both Tundra's cores, they easily built a net worth lead. They were able to close the game at minute 47.
In game two, fans were excited to see Nine pulling up a Centaur Warrunner mid against the opponent's Ember Spirit. The pick is very unusual but it wasn't surprising. Nine is known for playing odd midlane heroes that would prove to be a nuisance. Remember the Keeper of the Light and Winter Wyvern mid days? Nine was pretty much the person responsible for that phenomenon. The midlaner expressed his thoughts regarding the Centaur pick in the post-match interview:
"I think it's good. Right now Ember (Spirit) is a very strong meta hero and you just gotta find theories that can punish him, on lane at least, or in the game. I just thought that maybe Centaur is one of these heroes. I'm not sure yet, but just trying some things."
Nine went on to dominate the midlane as Centaur possess high right-click damage and harass potential. Larl on Ember Spirit struggled to obtain creeps but it was only a matter of time until Spirit begins rolling around the map.
By the mid-game, Spirit led the net worth only by a small margin, but they were absolutely ruthless in fights. Mira's Rubick was quick to acquire game-changing spells and execute them well. Meanwhile, Collapse shined on his signature Magnus, completely destroying the enemy's position. Spirit successfully closed the game at minute 33.
Team Spirit vs Tundra Esports: The epic culmination
The deciding game of the series was a roller-coaster with wild teamfights and unpredictable outcomes. It began with Tundra completely dominating the map in the first half of the game. But Spirit wasn't afraid to make a move. As the late-game Terrorblade on Yatoro started to become a threat, Spirit ambushed Tundra near the Roshan pit to turn things around.
Following that fight, Tundra was still leading by net worth. But Spirit rode on that momentum to pick off heroes on the map. They were able to find skiter's Ursa, and him being the biggest damage dealer for Tundra, was a big loss. The game continued to drag as both teams patiently wait for the next Roshan.
At the 48-minute mark both teams finally clashed in front of the Roshan pit. Tundra initially struggled in the fight but once they committed buybacks, Spirit couldn't survive. One of the reasons was that Tundra was in control of the Dire outpost and they quickly arrived at the scene. Ultimately, Spirit's cores who had just bought back, immediately crumbled in the chaotic fight and were dead for two minutes.
What seems like the end of Spirit's run quickly became a thrilling Ancient defense. Only two players remained in Dire's base and as Tundra tear down the tier 4 towers, Collapse pulled out a double Ravage to buy time. It turns out it was enough for Spirit's cores to return and they successfully defended the throne.
The game went into a total reset. Both teams played cautiously and lingered around the map to anticipate the next Roshan. Buybacks were up, Rapiers were bought (though never used), and thrones were exposed. Spirit had better control of the map but Tundra was painfully good at countering fights. In the end, 33's Dark Seer became the savior that they needed as he executed a game-changing Wall and Vacuum combo.
This fight earned Tundra the time and space for an easy Roshan. The team then marched to the doors of Spirit's base with an advantage. Spirit failed to deliver another miraculous high-ground defense and tapped out at minute 65.
Tundra Esports wins the series 2-1 to survive in the Upper Bracket at the BetBoom Universe tour. The TI11 champions will face Gaimin Gladiators next on Feb. 14 at 1:00 AM SGT. Meanwhile, Team Spirit drops to the Lower Bracket and will face the revamped Alliance on Feb.13 07:00 PM SGT. Check out BetBoom Universe's full schedule here.