Two TI victories, but still nervous about 1v1s.
Yaroslav "Miposhka" Naidenov's squad is poised to dominate at BetBoom Dacha Dubai 2024. Team Spirit is currently 2-0 after defeating nouns on the first day with a match against Xtreme Gaming set for the second day. Before the tournament, esports.gg spoke with Spirit captain Miposhka about his bond with the team and life after the Dota Pro Circuit (DPC).
Join us for an exclusive interview with Team Spirit captain Miposhka at BetBoom Dacha Dubai 2024.
Miposhka interview at BetBoom Dacha Dubai 2024
Esports.gg: How's FISSURE treating you here in Dubai?
Miposhka: We arrived yesterday, so I didn't taste everything that is here. I'll need some time to see how it is.
Were there any pro players who inspired you to pursue Dota 2 full-time?
Like idol, you mean? I guess it's [Clement "Puppey" Ivanov]. I would see matches with him, his career. He is really a big winner — always with his team. He also plays Position 5 every time and is a really good captain. He was my idol.
What do you think about the DPC dissolving and third-party events like this taking its place?
For me, it's hard to say right now. For example, we've played two qualifiers already, and I like that it happens very fast. We won the first qualifier in one day and the second we needed two days, so that's what I really like. But we will see how it will change later. A big problem is now that teams from division two have no options to play right now. Before, there were also tournaments for division two, and there were a lot of good teams that could prove themselves. But now, there is no option for them to show themselves.
Double Aegis, but still humble
Do you ever use your fame in pubs? If someone tries to take your role from you, do you just tell them “I am Miposhka. I won TI twice," for example?
No, no, no, no. Never. Sometimes I could say something like, "Hey dude, I've already won something. You should trust me." Stuff like that. Never like "Shut up! I'm the two-times TI champion!" Stuff like that — never.
If you could only play one hero for the rest of your life, who would you pick and why? Probably Earth Spirit, right?
Earth Spirit? No, no. It's Ancient Apparition. We actually talked about this with some teammates, and I chose Ancient Apparition. The hero can kind of play any role. Actually, I remember — Hoodwink! Apparition is second. Hoodwink because this hero can play any role, mid lane, carry, Position 3, in my opinion. You can play support role on this hero, and also, I just like it! She has a lot of mobility, nukes. She can go carry with the right lineup. So yeah, Hoodwink.
Spirit is the second team to win The International twice. Has the championship changed how you see OG’s victories?
No, TI didn't change us too much. Not like the first, that's what I mean. Nothing like a big win, so it doesn't change it.
Spirit may never lose again
Team Spirit enters the event with a 17-series win streak and hasn’t lost since last July. Has the team’s training changed during this streak?
It's really cool. We have a usual program, if I can say it like this. Nothing special. We had a good period for rest, like two months after we won TI. After we came back to professionalism, our program for training was the same. We keep playing a lot of pubs, we discuss a lot about pubs and heroes.
Do you still see Gaimin Gladiators as a major rival?
Right now? No, not really. We still think they are a really good team, we're sure that they will take a lot of really good places, top three, top two, maybe win some tournaments. Of course, we still respect them and we know they are a strong team.
Are there any other teams that you consider very strong?
Liquid, I guess. Tundra is also very strong, I think. We will hopefully still beat them, but we will see!
What about Falcons?
I think it's also a strong team.
How do you feel playing in qualifiers after winning TI twice? Don’t you think you deserve an invite?
Of course we would rather have an invite, but it was our decision as a team to skip Kuala Lumpur. We knew we would lose some points and probably play in some qualifiers. So we were ready for it, I would say.
Spirit could take home two trophies
Your midlaner Larl is the only Spirit player entering the 1v1 tournament. How do you think he will do?
I think it depends on if he wants it. If he wants to win, I think he can do it. We talked about the tournament and he's not really sure. He will not try to win, but he will try to show how good he is.
Were you interested in signing up?
I was thinking about it, and I wanted to play, but I saw that there are a lot of players and there could be a lot of matches. For me, I feel pressure. A long time ago, I played a lot of 1v1s and I always felt pressure. I was nervous, stuff like this. I thought maybe I should try because it's a change for me, but... I don't know, maybe I'm too scared? (Laughs) So I decided not to play.
Your team has been together for quite some time now, with Larl as the only recent change. Do you see each other as more than teammates? Maybe brothers?
I will say yeah. Everyone feels like a family, I would say. We try to help each other always, say some good words, support each other not only in Dota, but in life. Also our managers help us a lot, so I would say we are a family.
A special thanks to Miposhka for taking the time at BetBoom Dacha 2024 to speak with esports.gg.