Shanghai Major – Group Stage – Day 2 Recap

More outstanding Dota, and disappointment for Chinese teams has been overshadowed by drama surrounding James “2GD” Harding’s firing.

Halfway through Day 2, after an extended delay, Valve replaced the English host, James “2GD” Harding. Despite this, some Twitch stream dropouts, and the outrage that his firing caused, Day 2 was filled with quality Dota matches.

Entering the competition Chinese teams were predicted to be strong contenders, especially on their home turf, however in the first match-up of the day, Fnatic vs Vici Gaming, thing’s didn’t go well for VG. Fnatic (similar to MVP PHoenix) were not highly rated, but brought their top level game to the competition.

After a great start for Fnatic in game 1, VG managed to claw back into the fight, but Fnatic’s push was too strong and they took game 1.

Game 2 was more on Vici Gaming’s terms, where Burning’s morphling was allowed to get farmed and they were able to roll over Fnatic. That was all turned around in game 3 though as Fnatic took the series 2:1 by demolishing Vici in the final game. DJ’s Chen and Mushi’s Sven were both allowed to farm almost uncontested, and Vici Gaming couldn’t avoid fights, or defend Fnatic’s push.

In the other first round Match, Alliance vs Team Spirit, Alliance took an easy 2:0 victory. Teeam Spirit didn’t seem quite prepared for the tournament and offered little to counter Alliance’s growing lead in game 1, but in game 2 the fight was more even until Alliance eventually found the higher ground and quickly ended the game.

Fnatic struggled against their winners bracket match against Alliance, dropping game 1 to the Swedes easily. Game 2 was a much closer batlle, despite a huge early game lead from Alliance, Fnatic held on long enough to win a few fights defending base, and a turn around seemed possible. However Alliance made smart decisions and held out their lead to win top place in Group B, winning 2:0.

group b winners

Things continued to go wrong for Vici Gaming as they never gained traction in either game to lose 2:0 to Team Spirit. Spirit’s outstanding young carryRamzes (16 yo) dominated the first game as Chaos Knight, and impressed in game 2 as Beastmaster.

That boosted Team Spirit into a chance for the winner’s bracket at the main event if they could take down Fnatic.

Game 1 was a hard fought game, with Team Spirit managing to take the game having drafted later game carries, and Fnatic were unable to break the Spirit base before being overwhelmed.

Fnatic came back swinging though and took the next 2 games convincingly, overwhelming the less experienced and younger team to take the match 2:1.

group b losers

Today we can expect more drama, both on and off-screen.

Team OG will face off against Archon. Archon are considered to be one of the worst teams, and OG one of the best in the competition. However if expectations have taught us anything so far in the group stage, it’s not to discount the underdog teams.

LGD Gaming will match up against Team Newbee. Chinese fans will be excited as one Chinese team will be guaranteed to win this match up. This is expected to be a close series bbut LGD are favoured to win.

2GD has also said that he will release a statement explaining the reasons and circumstances surrounding his departure, and we hope that there will be less technical issues than yesterday.