After a long road of open qualifiers and regional qualifiers, the journey has finally ended with Forward Gaming claiming the last spot to TI9, qualifying to the biggest tournament of the year through North America. Forward Gaming defeated J.Storm in the grand finals of the regional qualifiers to secure their spot in Shanghai. The ironic part? Forward Gaming was the organization that signed J.Storm’s (previously VGJ.Storm) entire roster at the beginning of the season and even though both sides went through a lot of changes through the course of the season, they were pitted against each other at very last game of the TI9 qualifiers.
The series ended 3-1 in favour of Forward Gaming with J.Storm winning the first game and losing the next three. All four games were one sided with the losing side not even managing to get 10 kills in the game.
Game 1: Forward Gaming – 8 : J.Storm (W) – 19
Game 2: Forward Gaming (W) – 33 : J.Storm – 4
Game 3: Forward Gaming (W) – 32 : J.Storm – 4
Game 4: Forward Gaming (W) – 48 : J.Storm – 5
J.Storm had absolutely no chance in games two, three and four as their opponents proved why they are the worthy ones from NA to make it to TI9.
With the NA regional qualifiers for TI9 done, all 18 teams that will participate in this year’s competition have been finalized. There isn’t a Team Serenity story here like last year, but Na’Vi and Royal Never Give Up could be said to be this year’s surprise teams for The International.
With the wrap up of the TI9 qualifiers, there is not a lot of professional Dota 2 to look forward to before the event itself begins on the 15th of August. There is of course, the Summit 10 that will be taking place from the 25th to the 28th of July and will serve as a practice tournament for teams, but that is about it. Other than that, it should be a quiet month for Dota 2; the calm before the storm!