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The International 2018's Grand Finals – The Comeback is Complete

TI8 GRAND FINALS.jpg

The International 2018’s final day was without a doubt the most exciting one in TI history and finally, the cycle has been broken. A Chinese Dota 2 team was supposed to win this year as is tradition, but not even the great TI cycle, the number 8 (considered very lucky in Chinese culture) or anything else could stop OG from claiming the Aegis of Champions in their miracle run through the tournament.

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At 05:15 this morning, OG lifted the Aegis of Champions and the lion’s share of the biggest prize pool in esports history. With the prize pool now over $25.5 million, OG claimed $11.2 million, which at the current Dollar to Rand conversion rate is a mind-blowing R160 million. Let that just sink in for a moment.

Before the Grand Finals took place, there was one more match that needed to go down and its result crushed the hopes and dreams of many Dota 2 fans.

Geniuses and Juggernauts

Before the Chinese juggernaut PSG.LGD took on OG, one more team stood in their way. Evil Geniuses looked extremely strong taking down the defending champions on day five, but PSG.LGD decimated EG, knocking them out of the tournament in the lower bracket finals.

I know we have a lot of local EG fans, but I have to say that I couldn’t help but smile when I saw them eliminated. Freedom and the Aegis were not secured as the “USA, USA, USA!” chants were finally no more. Even so, EG did play well and a top three finishing with a roster only two months old, but keep in mind OG had to go through even a bigger roster change due to Fly and S4 leaving OG and joining EG in a shocking turn of events only months before The International 2018.

To quote Fly one last time when he was asked why he left OG for EG, his response was this:

The team hasn’t worked for a long time and I can say personally that I lost a lot of motivation. When the whole situation arose where I could join EG, I felt a new surge of motivation where I felt like this is really a team I could win with, as opposed to the previous team where I felt we kind of hit a dead end. In the end, I want to win and I want to do it with teammates I believe in.

PSG.LGD took EG down 2-0 and secured their spot in the Grand Finals, while EG took home just over $2.6 million. Hopefully, the team sticks together and bounces back in the 2018/2019 Pro Circuit as clearly, they do have more than enough potential to take down Majors throughout next season.

A final for the Aegis

The International 2018’s Grand Finals was the first one in five years to go to the fifth and final game and it was, without a doubt the best Grand Finals in The International history. PSG.LGD looked unstoppable heading into the finals and even though OG came from the upper bracket, many still considered them the slight underdogs.

That’s exactly the spot OG does their best in and the first game, they took PSG.LGD down after being behind for most of the game. However, PSG.LGD pushed back hard in two tight games to secure themselves a 2-1 lead in the Grand Finals, only one match away from the Aegis of Champions.

With their backs up against the wall, OG showed yet again why they are the comeback kings, the team that you should never, ever count out until the GG is called. In game 4, OG managed to make a mind-blowing comeback that shook the stadium and the Grand Finals was suddenly all tied up.

In the final game, PSG.LGD again pushed OG on the backfoot and at 20 minutes in, PSG.LGD was about 18-6 kills ahead. The Chinese site then took down some barracks and it looked like OG was done for. However, OG just said “NO!” and never surrendered, clawing their way back. I know we’ve had some fantastic comebacks throughout the tournament from OG already, but this one was without a doubt the greatest as their big game temperament was without equal.

On the brink of elimination, they managed one of the greatest comebacks ever and when PSG.LGD called the GG, the comeback was finally complete and I couldn’t help but have some tears in my eyes.

With all the EG and OG drama and going through the gruelling open qualifiers all the way to the Grand Finals of The International 2018, N0tail stepping up to captain the team and a player, Topson, who came out of nowhere, showcasing his immense skill, it all just came together so well. Ceb, from a couch to a brilliant performance and Jerax with his game-turning plays and Ana coming back to the team, everything standing in the way of OG crumbled to dust.

Their resolve was unmatched and now, their win will forever be etched into esports history. All we can do now is wait for the 2018/2019 Dota 2 Pro Circuit to begin and more fantastic matches to kick off.

We would just like to thank all our readers for the great discussions on social media and following our coverage for The International 2018 and we will continue to bring you all the updates for Dota 2 and the DPC going forward.

What do you think about the miracle run from OG and did you expect them to win the tournament before the start of the final day? Let us know in the comment section below.

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