The playoff field for the 2021 Dota 2 ONE Esports Singapore Major was announced by the competition’s organizers on the eve of its commencement.
After a hectic wild-card round and an equally eventful group stage, the number of teams who are still alive in the Dota Pro Circuit’s first Major tournament has whittled to 12, with seven progressing from groups and five entering the event as reigning Upper Division winners from their respective region.
The group of teams reaching playoffs via groups includes, from the order of standings, Thunder Predator, PSG.LGD, Vici Gaming, Quincy Crew, Team Liquid, Team Aster, and OB Esports x Neon.
Of those entering the playoffs after receiving a bye from groups, they are Team Secret, Invictus Gaming, Fnatic, Virtus.pro, and Evil Geniuses.
The playoff bracket, which is slated to last from March 31 to April 4, is displayed below:
All matches in both sides of the bracket, save for the Grand Finals, will be done via a best-of-three series. For the finals, it will culminate as a best-of-five series on April 4.
Upper Bracket Matchups
Thunder Predator, the surprise first-placed team of the group stage from South America, will encounter their next big challenge in the playoffs as they take on Team Secret, the European Upper Division winner and preeminent best Dota 2 team in the world.
Subverting expectations, TP qualified for the upper bracket by finishing with a 5-2-0 record in the group stage, trouncing some of the major region’s best teams while not conceding a defeat in the process. Their form promptly fostered an enamoured crowd of believers–and sceptics–that want them to make a deep run in Singapore. Nevertheless, there are also those who have scoffed at TP’s play with the expectation they will inevitably bow out to the world’s top teams.
Nevertheless, if there’s ever a chance for TP, or any Cinderella team for that matter, to prove their doubters wrong, this would be now. And as the only team representing their region (Upper Division champion Beastcoast withdrew from the Major due to COVID complications), they are aided by the support of its fans who clamour for them to do them proud.
Invictus Gaming and VIci Gaming will play the only all-regional fixture in the first round of the upper bracket. Their previous confrontation in the DPC Chinese Upper Division ended in IG’s favour with them defeating Vici in two games on February 2. Vici holds a familiarity to grabbing success in Singapore, for when the last time a LAN took place on the island (ONE Esports Dota 2 World Pro Invitational), they finished as overall champions.
Evil Geniuses and Fnatic, as champions of their respective Upper Divisions, will face off in the upper bracket for an opportunity to crack the Top 6 in the first Major of the 2021 DPC. One of the players taking part will experience a momentous reunion as EG Position 2 Abed “Abed” Yusop will butt heads with his former team of 2017 to 2019. EG and Fnatic hadn’t met each other in the playoffs of a Major tournament since the Kuala Lumpur Major where the NA team defeated the SEA contingent in the third round series of the lower bracket in two games.
After cleaning house in the CIS Upper Division by going undefeated in its seven games of play, Virtus.Pro enters the Singapore Major as they face China’s PSG.LGD, who reached this point of their high placements in the wild card and group stage. In retrospect, their meeting is the first since The International 9 where PSG routed VP and sent them to the lower bracket on the first day of the main event.
Since that series in Shanghai, both teams have reshuffled their rosters profoundly to which all but one player (Wang “Ame” Chunyu with PSG) remains. Nevertheless, the desire to attain victory no matter the time and place hasn’t wavered for either faction, and that incentive will surely be most prevalent in Singapore.
The winners of these four series will converge in the second round, whereas the losers will drop to the lower bracket where Quincy Crew, Team Aster, Team Liquid, and OB Esports await them.
Lower Bracket Matches
As for which teams will face each other in the start of the lower bracket, which starts on March 31, the matches will proceed as such:
- Loser of VP/PSG.LGD vs Quincy Crew
- Loser of TP/Secret vs Team Aster
- Loser of VG/IG vs Team Liquid
- Loser of EG/Fnatic vs OB Esports x Neon
DPC Point Allocation
Teams eliminated from the Wild Card, Group Stage, and the first round of the lower bracket won’t receive any of the 2,700 allocated DPC points nor a share of the $500,000 total prize pool.
Those that finish in 7th-8th place (i.e. second round of lower bracket) earn 200 DPC points and $12,500. Fifth-sixth place teams (exited in the lower bracket third round) get 300 points and $25,000.
Fourth place onwards to the champion receive accumulating increments of the proceeding prize pool. Fourth gets $50,000 and 350 points, third gets $75,000 and 400 points, runners-up $100,000 and 450 points, and the champion earns $200,000 and 500 points.
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