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A new team and a new shot at the ESL One trophy for Fnatic

Hans Oelschlägel's picture
Hans Oelschlägel
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Fnatic are the first team who weren’t directly invited to the event to qualify for ESL One at New York Super Week through the SEA region qualifiers. After a thrilling and hard-fought five-game series, the new-look Fnatic team managed to beat out MVP.Phoenix 3-2 to punch their coveted ticket to New York. In order to come this far, Mushi and Ohaiyo surrounded themselves with new talent in the wake of The International 5, namely Black^, Net and promising Filipino youngster DJ.

After their suboptimal performances at ESL One Frankfurt 2015 and The International 5, it became obvious that the team needed to undergo some drastic changes to keep up with the best teams in the world. The fact that they emerged victorious over MVP.Phoenix in the ESL One at New York Super Week qualifiers already shows their rapid improvement. The Koreans managed to finish top eight at The International 5 after all, and were by no means an easy opponent to get past. However, DJ especially - the youngest and most unproven player on the new Fnatic squad - was able to shine in the offlane during the qualifiers, also thanks to all the attention Mushi attracted in the mid lane.

“Space created” could very well be the motto of the new Fnatic squad. As one of the most accomplished mid players in the scene, Mushi constantly gets pressured and ganked in the mid lane while Fnatic’s other lanes often don’t have to deal with heavily contested matchups. This comes as a huge benefit to DJ and especially Black^, who is known to be one of the most efficient farmers the game has ever seen and who doesn’t even need to fight the enemy team to win a game single handedly. On top of that, Black^ will have the chance to be the first player to lift two ESL One trophies as he was part of last year’s Vici Gaming roster, which won the inaugural ESL One New York tournament.

Position Player Most played heroes (patch 6.84)
Carry Black^   
Mid Mushi   
Offlane DJ   
Support Ohaiyo   
Support Net   

Matchups against other attendees

Even as the SEA region’s strongest team, Fnatic don’t get too many chances to compete against the world’s best, so most of their opponents at ESL One at New York Super Week will not be very familiar with their playstyle and vice versa. Whether or not this works in their favor remains to be seen, but they will need to improve significantly on their past performance at TI5.

Team Secret

  • 1-1 at The International 5
  • 0-2 at Red Bull Battle Grounds
  • 2-1 at StarLadder Season 12

Virtus.Pro

  • 0-1 at The International 5
  • 1-1 at joinDOTA MLG Pro League

How will the revamped Fnatic squad perform at ESL One at New York Super Week? Get your ticket for the Dota 2 festivities at the Madison Square Garden Theater now to find out! You can also stay up to date with the latest news and information by following our dedicated Dota 2 Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Find our other ESL One at New York Super Week team previews below:

Header image courtesy of gosugamers.net