With less than 24 hours left before the roster lock takes effect, teams around the world are rapidly forming and confirming their lineups for the Manila Major. The upcoming lock will also be in effect for The International 2016, which means that teams must stick with their confirmed lineups if they would like to compete at TI6.
Most notably, the rumoured new Evil Geniuses lineup which includes Kurtis “Aui_2000” Ling, Syed Sumail “Suma1L” Hassan, Sam “BuLba” Sosale, Clinton “Fear” Loomis, and captain Peter “Ppd” Dager was formally announced earlier today. Aui and BuLba will be replacing Artour “Arteezy” Babaev and Saahil “UNiVeRsE” Arora respectively. This marks the first time Aui will be playing the 1 position since the old PotM Bottom/Team Dignitas days, where he was teamed up with North American mainstays such as Jing “Sneyking” Jun Wu and Ioannis “Fogged” Loucas.
Still in the North American side of things, Digital Chaos is back with an entirely new squad, just one day after their supposed disbandment. It turns out that the organization itself wasn’t dissolving, but rather just the team they had prior. This time, SUNSfan’s team will include Aliwi “w33” Omar, Roman “Resolut1on” Fominok, David “Moo” Hull, Martin “Saksa” Sazdov, and Rasmus “MiSeRy” Filipsen — to form a group of players from wildly varying backgrounds and home countries.
The Vegetables Esports Club, a team formed entirely by some of our favorite casters, also confirmed their roster. Ben “Merlini” Wu, Austin “Capitalist” Walsh, Jacob “Maelk” Toft-Andersen, and Kevin “Purge” Godec make their return to the competitive scene, but this time with William “Blitz” Lee instead of Monib “Monib” Baray.
Although the original Digital Chaos roster never really found success on the same level as, say, EG or CompLexity Gaming, this new lineup could show promise considering that w33 and MiSeRy have championship pedigree to back them up.
Moving over to Europe, it was announced that Virtus.pro will be running two squads in this roster lock, named Virtus.pro and Polarity. Polarity will run with Pavel “9pasha” Khvastunov (formerly from Vega Squadron), Andrey “Afoninje” Afonin (formerly from HellRaisers), Alexander “DkPhobos” Kucheria, Ilya “Lil” Ilyuk, and a pub star named Evgeniy “Jenya” Kuznetsov. Interestingly, the team does not have the Virtus.pro branding anywhere on its logo nor is it called “Virtus.pro Polarity”.
VP’s main squad will run with Ilya “ALOHADANCE” Korobkin, Sergey “G” Bragin, Maxim “yoky-” Kim, Alexander “NoFear” Churochkin, and Artem “fng” Barshak. Airat “Silent” Gaziev will be the designated substitute for VP.
As for China (which is in dire need of a large-scale shuffle and new blood in the scene), plenty of teams have confirmed their lineups. Newbee will be keeping three players from the previous lock on board, while bringing in Damien “kpii” Chok (who most notably played for MVP Phoenix last year) and Hu “Kaka” Liangzhi (EHOME’s former 4 support player and Earth Spirit expert). CDEC Youth received Chen “Xz” Zezhi and a new player known as “Victoria”, while the main CDEC team will be running with Wang “Rabbit” Zhang, Xie “Super” Junhao, and Yao “Yao” Zhengzheng in addition to Fu “Q” Bin and Liu “garder” Xinzhou. CDEC’s star player Sun “Agressif” Zheng moved over to the LGD Gaming main team last week.
Perhaps the most exciting roster confirmation in the Southeast Asian scene is the formation of White Fries Gaming. This team confirmed its lineup today and it will be composed of Gong “ZSMJ” Jian, Li “Chisbug” Chen, Pan “yChen” Shuaifang, Fan “ayo” Tianyou, and the one and only Benedict Lim “hyhy” Han Yong. This marks hyhy’s formal return to the competitive Dota 2 scene after a prolonged absence. He most recently played for a team called KingSurf, but his membership on that team lasted just over a month before he returned to his hiatus. White Fries Gaming will be competing in the SEA region despite being made up of mostly Chinese players.
The current Team Taring squad also received a sponsorship from Orange eSports — the same organization that took third place at TI3. What this might mean for the Malaysian team has yet to be seen, but they are likely happy to be sponsored by one of the biggest organizations in SEA.
The rest of the shuffle will finish up tomorrow before the roster lock deadline. More news to come in that time, so stay tuned to us for the latest!
Images from: Wykrhm “Wyk” Reddy’s Facebook page