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Year recap: NAVI.GG.BET Dota 2

31 Dec 2018 511
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2018 for NAVI.Dota 2

It's time to take a look at the results of 2018 for yet another ua NAVI.GG.BET lineup, this time — Dota 2. The year was not easy for the team, but in some ways successful.

To hit things off let's recap the overall results. So, in 2018 ua Natus Vincere team attended 9 LANs, which took place in 8 different countries: Ukraine, Russia, Malaysia, Poland, Indonesia, Romania, China, and Sweden. The total amount won by the team was $ 232,500. The most successful championship was MegaFon Winter Clash, where the “yellow-blacks” took the second place and won $ 75,000. It is noteworthy that this tournament was also the last for our boys in the past year.

A total of 11 players played on the team in 2018, besides the standins. As for the coach position, before The International 2018 it was occupied by ua Alexander «XBOCT» Dashkevich, and after him to this day — ua Andrii «Mag» Chipenko.

ua NAVI started 2018 with the GESC: Indonesia Minor qualifiers. That was far from a simple feat: the team won all three matches and got the coveted slot, but the final series was extremely tense. Despite initially losing 1:2 to Team Spirit, our guys still turned the tide and made a comeback victory — 3:2.

However, the first really serious test for the “yellow-blacks” was at the LAN-tournament ESL One Genting 2018: we qualified for it at the end of 2017. Malaysia warmly welcomed our team, which began its performance quite well — with a victory over us Evil Geniuses. Alas, followed by the loss to the champion of The International 2017 us Team Liquidua Natus Vincere fell into the lower bracket of the group. ph Mineski was defeated there  , but in the match for advancing from the group, us Evil Geniuses turned out to be stronger. Result: 7–8 place.

By the end of the event, the first reshuffles began: ru Vladimir «RodjER» Nikogosyan left the team, joining ru Virtus.pro. In return, ua Ilya « Lil» Ilyuk joined the "yellow-blacks". In a few days, another replacement happened: ru Akbar «SoNNeikO» Butaev left the team, and his place was taken by a Serbian player rs Nikola «LeBron» Popović. This was the roster that had to play at the qualifiers and big events.

The first strength test was the qualification for the Dota 2 Asia Championships 2018. After two victorious fights, the “yellow-black” first lost to eu Team Spirit, and then to ru Effect and dropped out from the qualifiers. However, ESL One Katowice 2018 was scheduled to start in 10 days, so they forgot about the failure and began to intensively prepare for the upcoming tournament.

Alas, the trip to Poland ended in a fiasco: two losses and the last place in the overall standings. The Bucharest Major can't be called a good one either.  The guys failed to make it into the playoffs, losing in the decisive match versus ph TNC Pro Team.

Nevertheless, spring turned out to be eventful. ua Natus Vincere participated in three LAN tournaments: GESC: Indonesia, SL Invitational 5 and EPICENTER XL. However, only the first of them turned out to be somewhat successful: our team managed to earn 30 Dota Pro Circuit points, taking the 3rd-4th place. In the other cases, the team ended in the second half of the standings.

Qualifying competitions were not very good either. “Yellow-black” failed to earn a ticket to GESC: Thailand and MDL Changsha Major, but managed to take first place in the ESL One Birmingham 2018 qualifiers (but later withdrew from the tournament). The lack of stability within the team forced us to make some changes. So, after the EPICENTER XL, the support player rs Nikola “LeBron” Popović was replaced by ru Fedor “Velheor” Rusikhin. ua Ilya "Lil" Ilyuk moved to position 5 support.

Unfortunately, the changes did not benefit the team. At the China Dota2 Supermajor, where we were directly invited, the yellow-blacks did not win a single game, and the main tournament of the year, The International 2018, ended for ua Natus Vincere at the stage of open qualifiers: both attempts to make it through have failed. Of course, not a whole a lot of people were satisfied with this results, so soon it was announced that the team was on hold for an indefinite period.

On September 1, there was an announcement, according to which, only ua Vladyslav "Crystallize" would remain from the previous roster. In addition to him, the team would have ru Akbar "SoNNeikO" Butaev, ua Idan "MagicaL" Vardanian and kg Evgenii "Blizzy" Ree. There was only 1 slot left — position 4, and ru Evgenii " Chuvash ” filled that slot after a week-long trial period. The role of the coach was given to ua Andrii "Mag" Chipenko.

This announcement can be called the profound one for ua Natus Vincere, as for the first time in its history, the team was left without one of the most popular players in the world - ua Danil "Dendi" Ishutin. The famous mid is still without a team, but at the beginning of the season-2018/2019 has already managed to play against his former team.

At first, the new composition caused mistrust among the fans, which is not surprising: some of the players did not have great achievements or even any experience of playing at major tournaments. At the same time, discontent intensified after the first qualifiers for The Kuala Lumpur Major, where the guys took the last places.

However, DreamLeague Season 10 qualifiers silenced the spiteful critics. Yellow-black demonstrated a great game, confidently took the first line and won a slot for the championship in Sweden. True, there was a whole month left before the competitions, so ua NAVI accepted the first invitation to play online tournaments in a long time.

Those were Reshuffle Madness and Autumn Brawl, where the strongest teams of the CIS and Europe opposed our guys. The first tournament was quite unfortunate for the guys, but the second championship was a pretty good one for the team. ua NAVI took the third-fourth place there, having beaten eu Team Secret along the way (by the way, ua Dendi was standing in for them). However, the results weren't the most important aspect, since the priority was to build team chemistry, as well as gain experience playing against the strongest teams.

The first truly serious competition for the renewed roster was DreamLeague Season 10 minor, which had quite strong teams, like cn Royal Never Give Up, se The Final Tribe, eu Vega Squadron, my Tigers. It was the last team that caused most of the trouble since our guys fought them twice over the event.

The second match happened to be the grand final, where both teams had the time to play from behind. The teams showed a magnificent and fascinating game, but the rival of the “yellow-blacks” emerged stronger, winning with the score 3:2. Despite the unfortunate defeat, the championship had a positive effect on the guys. They started to believe in their strengths and understood what they needed to work on.

However, the subsequent qualifiers are quite hard to evaluate. The fact is that ua NAVI didn't exit the group at The Chongqing Major closed qualifiers and didn't make it through The Bucharest Minor closed qualifiers, but at the same time claimed a slot at MegaFon Winter Clash, winning in a tough match against zz NoPangolier, winning 3:2 in a tough match. In other words, the “yellow-blacks” missed more important competitions in terms of getting DPC points, but still made it to Moscow for their fans.

TheMegaFon Winter Clash was indeed extremely successful in all respects. The spectators saw a great game by the team, while ua Natus Vincere claimed victories over teams likeru Virtus.pro and cn PSG.LGD. The loss to eu Team Liquid in the finals did not become a disappointment: playing against a team that strong and balanced is a great experience as it is.


Overall, in 2018 ua Natus Vincere went through everything — from crushing defeats to exalting victories. The guys come into 2019 with a clear optimism and the desire to become as strong as possible to give their fans excellent results. We believe that the coming year will be extremely successful for the “yellow-blacks”, and they will be able to raise a lot more trophies! #NAVINATION

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