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Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019

Lord Matus
Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019

General information

Events of ESL One Birmingham 2019 will be taking place from 28 May till 2 June. The prize pool of the championship will consist of $300,000. The tournament will not be included in the Dota Pro Circuit system, however here we have another motivating factor for participants in the championship. One of the sponsors of the event is Mercedes-Benz. At each ESL championship the German auto group gives a new Mercedes model to an esportsman that receives a medal of the most valuable player according to the results of the tournament. The pool cannot be considered as small as well. The main reward at ESL One Birmingham 2019 will run at $125,000.

As for the holding format, it is rather simple. 12 teams got divided into two groups with six in each. There the participants of the tournament will play in Round Robin at the Bo2 meetings. Four best teams from each of the groups will make it to the playoff whereas two worst will leave the competition. At the final stage the teams will play in the double-elimination bracket .

Tournament favorites

Team Secret (place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating — #1 [14250 points])
Win odds: 2,70

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 1

The European team with the captain Puppey is the main favorite of the upcoming championship in Birmingham for sure. The team holds the first place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating having 14250 DPC points and it deserves to be the strongest team in the world. At the recently finished Major tournament in Paris Clement Ivanov with his teammates proved one more time that they play for the best team of the current Dota Pro Circuit season having won the fourth major. Vici Gaming, PSG.LGD and Liquid can become an obstacle on the way of the Europeans, but we are sure that Secret should get to at least Four Best and also at the final.

Team Secret roster:

Michal ‘Nisha’ Jankowski
Yeik ‘MidOne’ Nai Zheng
Ludwig ‘zai’ Wahlberg
Yazied ‘YapzOr’ Jaradat
Clement ‘Puppey’ Ivanov

Team Liquid (place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating — #7 [3525 points])
Win odds: 4.70

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 2

Team Liquid are in the shape they haven’t been in for a long time. At the last Major tournament the team stopped one step away from victory, losing against Team Secret by the score of 1-3. At the European qualifiers for the fifth major the team also took the second place, losing against Secret and making it to EPICENTER Major 2019. Being captained by KuroKy, one of the best leader in the world, great performers play on their positions who arose fear and respect in their opponents.

The team got to Group А together with such opponents as Vici Gaming, Ninjas in Pyjamas, OG, Forward Gaming, and TNC Predator. It will be easy for the Europeans to get to Four Best in the group. We expect this roster to get their place in Top Four not only at the group stage but also at the tournament bracket. If KuroKy get prepared for the meeting with their strong opponents, he will be able to pass to the grand final and probably to win the championship.

Team Liquid roster:

Lasse ‘MATUMBAMAN’ Urpalainen
Amer ‘Miracle-’ Al-Barkawi
Ivan ‘MinD_ContRoL’ Ivanov
Maroun ‘GH’ Merhej
Kuro ‘KuroKy’ Salehi Takhasomi

PSG.LGD (place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating — #5 [4140 points])
Win odds: 5.00

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 3

PSG.LGD is one of the strongest teams in China that is represented by legendary players. Lately the Chinese have had mixed results, but, nevertheless, the results they got could not be considered as bad as well. By the way, at MDL Disneyland Paris Major 2019 they got placed on the 4 position, losing against Team Liquid at the match for getting to the final of the lower bracket. At the regional qualifier they took the first places three times in a row. This fact cements our confidence in PSG.LGD’s success at the upcoming championship. The Chinese will be able to give a good fight and we don’t doubt about their passing to the playoff. This team is likely to be one of the favorites to get placed on the 3 or 4 positions in the tournament bracket, however is they get prepared for the meeting with such dangerous opponents as Team Secret, they will be able to win the trophy.

PSG.LGD roster:

Wang ‘Ame’ Chunyu
Lu ‘Somnus丶M’ Yao
Yang ‘Chalice’ Shenyi
Xu ‘fy’ Linsen
Yap ‘xNova’ Jian Wei

Evil Geniuses (place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating — #3 [6750 points])
Win odds: 6.70

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 4

The team Evil Geniuses, that likes to get placed on the 3 positions at all tournament even in the Dota Pro Circuit rating, also can be considered as one of the favourites. The team got to Group B which is also represented by Team Secret, PSG.LGD, Keen Gaming, Alliance, and Gambit Esports. It will be difficult for the Americans to make it to the playoff , but they should cope with their task. Evil Geniuses is likely to make it to Six Best and to gain at least $12,000, but the likelihood to win the tournament is not as high as Secret’s, Liquid’s and PSG.LGD’s, for instance.

If we pay into attention at the events occurred at Adrenaline Cyber League 2019, we can think that EG lost their gaming shape. It seems to us that the team performed poorly accidentally and due to the reason that their opponents had support of the audience that helped Spirit to make it to the final. Such things should not occur at ESL One Birmingham 2019.

Evil Geniuses roster:

Artour ‘Arteezy’ Babaev
Sumail ‘SumaiL’ Hassan
Gustav ‘s4’ Magnusson
Andreas ‘Cr1t-’ Nielsen
Tal ‘Fly’ Aizik

Teams that have chances

Vici Gaming (place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating — #4 [6300 points])
Win odds: 11.0

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 5

Vici Gaming got a win at the third Major tournament whereas at the fourth one they took the 7-8 place. It could happen due to the fact that a lot of contestants treated this event seriously and had prepared to it as this event was important for the teams. At ESL One Birmingham 2019, that is not a part of the series of Dota Pro Circuit tournaments, everything can follow another script, so one of the best Chinese teams has a good chance to win. Let’s mark that Vici Gaming is represented by a worldwide famous player that proved his title of a high-class Chinese individualist, Paparazi.

Vici Gaming roster:

Zhang ‘Paparazi灬’ Chengjun
Zeng ‘Ori’ Jiaoyang
Zhou ‘Yang’ Haiyang
Pan ‘Fade’ Yi
Ding ‘Dy’ Cong

OG (место в рейтинге Dota Pro Circuit — #10 [948 очков])
Коэффициент на победу: 11.0

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 6

После того, как OG победили в последнем The International и ana сел на скамью запасных, уйдя в инактив, результаты европейской команды резко пошли на спад. Играя с iLTW, который неоднократно выручал OG, участвуя в турнире вместе с ними, европейцы не могли добиться высот и многие говорили о том, что они не скоро начнут играть как в былые времена. Так говорили до недавно прошедшего MDL Disneyland Paris Major 2019, в котором OG превзошли ожидания зрителей, заняв там 5-6 место, уступив Team Liquid, которые стали одним из финалистов соревнований. Теперь после возвращения Anathan ‘ana’ Pham европейцы могут вернуться в былую форму и попытаться сделать это уже на ESL One Birmingham 2019. Победы от европейцев ожидать не стоит, однако наблюдать за их действиями в групповой стадии и плей-офф будет достаточно интересно.

Состав OG:

Anathan ‘ana’ Pham
Topias ‘Topson’ Taavitsainen
Sebastien ‘7ckngMad’ Debs
Jesse ‘JerAx’ Vainikka
Johan ‘N0tail’ Sundstein

Keen Gaming (place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating — #9 [1140 points])
Win odds: 27.0

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 7

At the moment Keen Gaming hold the 9 place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating and now they are close to lose an opportunity to get a direct invitation to The International 2019. The team wasn’t able to get qualifier through the Chinese qualifier either to the Minor- or the Major tournament. At the qualifiers for the minor the team took the 3 place and at the Major — 5-6. Keen has a chance to make it to the playoff, but at Group B they will be disturbed by such teams as Team Secret, Evil Geniuses, PSG.LGD, Alliance and Gambit Esports. Frankly speaking, Keen has a good chance only at the matches against Alliance and Gambit. We will not be surprised if the Chinese team can’t overcome the group stage and finish their participation at the 9-10 or 11-12 place.

Keen Gaming roster:

Wang ‘old chicken’ Zhiyong
Zhai ‘一’ Jingkai
Ren ‘eLeVeN’ Yangwei
Hu ‘Kaka’ Liangzhi
Song ‘dark’ Runxi

Ninjas in Pyjamas (place in the Dota Pro Circuit rating — #8 [2470 points])
Win odds: 33.0

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 8

Peter ‘ppd’ Dager and his teammates can surprise the audience at this championship as it happened at the fourth Major championship. The team not inspiring trust from the beginning managed to get to the 5-6 positions, winning over Vici Gaming at the upper bracket. Basing upon the fact that the European qualifier for EPICENTER Major 2019 brought a failure to the team, their gaming shape could much better. However, due to the fact that this tournament is not a part of the DPC series, several participants can get relaxed, so in the end ppd will be able to get a bit higher in the tournament bracket than it had been expected from Ninjas in Pyjamas.

Ninjas in Pyjamas roster:

Marcus ‘Ace’ Hoelgaard
Adrian ‘Fata’ Trinks
Neta ‘33’ Shapira
Martin ‘Saksa’ Sazdov
Peter ‘ppd’ Dager


TNC Predator, Gambit Esports, Forward Gaming and Alliance

Preview of ESL One Birmingham 2019. Photo 9

All these participants have one thing in common. According to the majority of spectators and sportsbook companies, the mentioned teams will be the first to leave the competition, holding the 9-10 or 11-12 places. TNC Predator and Forward Gaming got to Group A where they will fight with Vici Gaming, Team Liquid, Ninjas in Pyjamas, and OG. Meanwhile, Alliance and Gambit got to the opposite group which is really hard and where they will have to play against Team Secret, Evil Geniuses, PSG.LGD, and Keen Gaming. Among all the mentioned opponents only Keen seems to be the weakest but this Chinese team is not going to give up easily. Everybody thinks that these four teams are the weakest at ESL One Birmingham 2019, however we know that they can make a pleasant surprise even though the chance of the event is rather small.