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I was able to talk with Solo, the captain of Virtus.Pro after the TI8 group stages. I asked him about his thoughts across a variety of topics: The formation of VP, what Rodjer brings to the team, thoughts on his coach, his leadership

For my first question, I wanted to go to the beginning. Before VP picked you guys up, they had a difficult time getting the results they wanted. The GM at time went on a rant about the lack of professionalism in the scene. After that he picked you guys up and have been incredibly successful. SO I wanted to ask you how you ended up forming this team?

Well VP gave me an opportunity to build a team as I want. So I could pick players. Me and No-one, we decided together. We got RAMZES, Pasha, and Lil. We built our team since the beginning. It was it was hard. It was a long way.

When I look at your region, it’s hard to get players to work on the same page. As you said it’s a hard path. What do you think was the or the reason you were successful?

First of all we become friends. We practice a lot. We feel each other.​ We are ready to support each other. So it’s not annoying for us to play as five. We’re not tired of each other. I love my team, I’m proud of my players.

Your team your did well at TI7, even though you guys dropped out earlier than you probably wanted to. Is there any kind of lesson you picked up from that tournament? For instance, many teams learn from moments of loss, so what about your team, even given the fact that you’ve changed a player since.

We learned a lot about drafts, about strategy. About group stage, that was a big lesson for us at the first TI. We’ve made a lot of changes for this TI. think we are already better than the previous year.

So let’s talk about that a little bit like what did you think you learned about the draft. You don’t have to go into specifics, perhaps go into what happened throughout the year or what you learned from last year.

The differences is that we plan our draft more structured. We built our draft step by step. We have many heroes to first or second pick. We have better strategy this time.

Let’s talk about strategy because it’s a vague word. It can mean draft, movement, or space. How do you think about strategy?

The other TI was another system. I believe it was if you win 2-0 you get three points, if you play 1-1​ you get one point. This time they changed the system. Our goal was to come to the winner bracket and we did it. We tried not to show a lot of our strategies and leave them to playoffs. We did it.

In both versions of the team like with Lil and Rodjer, I see a very aggressive team that wants a fight. You then use that to create pressure and objectives. Was this something inherent in your players stye or how you see the game? Or a mix of the two?

Depends on meta. In the previous meta, we were playing the aggressive style because it was working good for us. We were winning laning stage, snowball, and objectives. This meta is different. You have to balance your draft and you can’t just play aggressive or win lanes. Lane is not everything. We are trying to upgrade our aggressive style to another one. It’s more difficult now.

Lane is not everything. We are trying to upgrade our aggressive style to another one. It’s more difficult now.”

I wanted to ask you about your leadership because when you look at leaders in various games there’s different types of leaders. Whether that be tactical leader like Bulba, who say takes care of draft. Or a leader who gets people to follow him like KuroKy. What kind of leader are you?

I’m trying to listen to my teammates. I’m not drafting alone, I’m not making plans for the game alone. We discuss everything, we listen to each other, we draft together. We plan our game, we scrim, and we use it in official games. So I believe I’m more like Kuro. I think he listens to his players a lot, but he’s still a good leader.

You have your coach Artstyle and the coach can do a lot of different things. It really depends on the two over the coach is how how does your partnership work with Artstyle in helping the team grow?

When we practice, he’s always with us in the lobby. He will watch our mistakes, write it, then tell us. We discuss drafts as well. He has his own game vision. He’s trying to help us with it. Arstyle is very useful, he does a lot of job.

It’s been a few months since you beat Rodjer. You’ve won a bunch of tournaments and are one of the best teams. ​How has his inclusion changed your team, whether that is in terms of strategy or personnel?

We were watching Rodjer at the last TI. We watched him at Na`Vi. He’s a really good position 4 player. The best for sure at the meta where you have to roam a lot. Now it’s a little bit different pool of heroes because the meta. But still he’s doing very good and he helps our team to play another level of Dota. We can always rely on him.

So outside of yourself. Who do you think is the best leader, excluding yourself?

Probably Kuro, I think. Kuro.

It is because you think you have similar qualities as leaders and players?

I can see how his team trust him, how they respect him, and I know that his understanding is very great. He’s been playing for so many years. So I believe he’s best leader.

I believe he [KuroKy] is the best leader.”

How did you prepare for the playoffs after the group stages?

As I said, we tried not to play with the heroes we practiced for this TI. Our only goal was to go to a bracket and we did it.

Current Playoff Bracket:

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