TNC secures winners bracket slot in Dota 2 Asia Championships

MANILA, Philippines – Philippine Dota’s top contender, TNC Pro Team, is back in the spotlight as they secure one of the top 4 slots in the 2018 Dota 2 Asia Championships playoffs. As one of the top 4 teams after the group stages, the team finds itself in the upper bracket.

There, a series loss will not mean immediate elimination but will only cause a team to fall to the lower bracket, where they will still have a chance to go for the championship win.  

The team, comprised of Marc Fausto, Armel Paul Tabios, Sam Hidalgo, Timothy Randrup, and team captain Carlo Palad, took the long road to secure the slot. At the conclusion of last week’s group stages, the team found themselves with a 4-3 record – just like 4 other teams did. It was a five-way tie, and only the top 2 teams from each of the two groups could advance to the upper bracket.

A tiebreaker round done in single round robin style (each team faces everyone else once) was held, wherein TNC rampaged through the competition, beating all 4 of them. 

TNC announced the news on their Facebook page:

With the run, the team is now on a 5-game winning streak, which includes a victory over China’s Keen Gaming in their last group stage game. In the tiebreaker round, TNC battled and won against China’s best teams Newbee and LGD, US powerhouse Optic Gaming, and Team Liquid, the winner of last year’s The International 2017 – the game’s biggest stage.

With the spirited run, TNC carries some major momentum in these upcoming playoffs, which will resume on April 4, Wednesday against either Team Secret or Vici Gaming. TNC is evenly matched against either, according to their most recent bouts against them prior to these Asia Championships. TNC had a 1-1 record against China’s Vici in January’s Galaxy Battles tournament, and was also 1-1 against Europe’s Team Secret in The International 2017, held in August 2017.

Certainly, TNC’s entry into the top 4 affords them not just a confidence boost – a crucial boost against teams that they haven’t yet dominated – but also some time to rest as the other teams compete for their own upper bracket slot in a separate single-elimination bracket called the “Breakout” round.  

Should TNC win the next round, they will be guaranteed at least a 7th/8th finish good for $35,000. Currently, they are guaranteed $15,000 and at least a 9th-to-12th finish. The team is well in position to top their current highest prize for the 2018 season: $30,000 from finishing 5th-to-8th in March’s Bucharest Major.

With the great group stage showing and their inspiring 5-win stream, they’re showing the most focus and chemistry they’ve had in months. Chances are high that they’ll be able to ride this wave of momentum to the fullest, so they can get as close as they can to the top prize of $370,000 – and earn a lot of respect and pride in the process. –

Gelo Gonzales

Gelo Gonzales is Rappler’s technology editor. He covers consumer electronics, social media, emerging tech, and video games.