Telkom Digital Gaming League (DGL) | DotA2 Community Shield Grand Final Preview

Telkom Digital Gaming League (DGL) | DotA2 Community Shield

10-12 April 2017 | The Run Up To The Grand Final

The last few matches leading up to the Grand Final of the Telkom Digital Gaming League (DGL) DotA2 Community Shield have been more than a little crazy. It’s been a pretty interesting ride, with it’s fair share of outrageous plays and surprising turns, to get us to the Grand Final being played tonight at 20h00. The two teams in the Grand Final are Veneration Esports and Mythic Gaming. These are also the two teams that have earned one of two invites to the Telkom DGL DotA2 Masters LAN Cup. But before we have a look at these two teams, we need to take a second to appreciate the run up to this epic clash. Remember, tonights fixture is being streamed through the usual official DGL channel on YouTube, so be sure to join the Stream live for these final matches (remember, there is no in game commentary). A quick shout out to all the very hard working casters who have worked on this tournament thus far; JubbaSuccubus, Ridditz, and LightRay Casting!

The series between Veneration Esports (VnR) and Mythic Gaming (Mythic) clearly favoured the Masters MGO. They’d been playing pretty well throughout the tournament and hadn’t really looked tested yet. Mythic Gaming, on the other hand, had managed to best their opponents in scrappy 2 – 1 series each time. The differences between the two teams seemed pretty obvious. Veneration Esports did whatever they wanted to do, and it just worked. Against everyone. Mythic, on the other hand, looked dangerous when they got the heroes they wanted. But when they didn’t, every one of them looked significantly less comfortable. This series was definitely more about Mythic Gaming outplaying VnR (Game 1), while VnR outdrafted Mythic (Game 2 & 3). While they ultimately couldn’t capitalize on their Game 1 start/lead, Mythic has done what no one expected them to do (or anyone, for that matter). They had shown the rest of the teams that VnR bleeds, just like the rest of us do. Mythic drop to the Lower Bracket Finals with only one life remaining.

Going into this series, Pulse Gaming Reborn (PLT Reborn) must have been the significantly more confident of the two teams. Why? Because PLT Reborn had already beaten Sinister5 All Stars (Sin5 All Stars) in this tournament. It was a pretty one sided stomp affair in the Upper Bracket, where PLT Reborn walked away with a fairly convincing 2 – 1 victory over Sin5 All Stars. This fixture, then, was the chance for F3arBender and his team to turn it all around with a huge victory over their opposition. This is exactly what happened, with Sin5 All Stars securing a monumental 2 – 0 clean sweep against PLT Reborn off the back of some solid F3arBender magic from mid lane (in both games). It’s interesting to note that Sin5 completely banned out the Disruptor against PLT Reborn in both games (a sure sign how much they think that hero counts in the way PLT Reborn play). Sadly at this point we say goodbye to PLT Reborn as they are eliminated, earning a respectable 4th place at the Telkom DGL DotA2 Community Shield. GGWP guys.

The Lower Bracket Finals between Mythic and Sin5 All Stars was going to be a huge match for a few reasons. Firstly, these two teams have moved up from 2nd Div to Prem pretty much together. You could almost say these teams have a fairly fierce rivalry all year (along with significant respect for each other). In the fixtures they’ve played officially thus far, Sin5 has emerged victorious on more than one occasion. However Mythic Gaming have been putting in some stellar performances of late against vastly talented teams. On paper, Sin5 had the history, Mythic had the magic. If Mythic could move past some of their weaknesses teams had already begun to exploit, they had the skill and teamwork to win it. If Sin5 could continue to farm the map as efficiently as they usually do and get farm on key heroes, they’d be able to win it as well. It really would come down to who could play their game, on their own terms.

The answer to the above question is that Mythic Gaming emerged victorious, earning their DGL Masters DotA2 LAN Cup seed after a clinical 2 – 0 series in which they appeared to be in control from start to finish in both games. Sin5 appeared to be caught completely by surprise in the drafts, with Mythic completely abandoning their usual style altogether. Thus from the earliest stages Sin5 struggled to really respond to any of the early aggression and rotations against Mythic. Sin5, despite less than desireable compositions, never gave up and fought to the very end. Both teams clearly put everything into this Community Shield (and their competitive DotA2 in general this year) and should both be applauded for getting this far. Wp Sin5 and Mythic.

Grand Final | Preview

  • Veneration Esports vs Mythic Gaming

Mythic have earned another shot at VnR, even though the only reward is a higher seed (and avoiding a Round 1 WRG match at the Masters LAN) and bragging rights. VnR have looked solid the entire tournament, and haven’t looked vulnerable against any team. But they dropped a game against Mythic in the Upper Bracket Final, where Mythic really stepped up and played exceptionally. In Game 2 and 3 VnR identified the Mythic strengths and removed them entirely, at which point Mythic struggled to execute their gameplan. In both those games VnR were also significantly more efficient across the entire map, with Mythic unable to keep up.

 

Closing Thoughts…

Up until this point, Mythic Gaming have been the only team in the Telkom DGL DotA2 Community Shield to take a game against Veneration Esports. However, it appears that VnR quickly figured Mythic out and then gave them the treatment. Will it happen again in the Grand Final, or will Mythic have a surprise up their sleeves?

We’ve stuck to our guns in terms of our original Telkom DGL DotA2 Community Shield predictions. With the tournament almost over, we’re starting to see just how wrong our predictions were! Have a look for yourselves:

  • Most likely to succeed? Flipsid3 Tactics South Africa. (They’re in the Grand Final so we’re not far off regardless of the result.)
  • Unlikely outsiders? Mythic Gaming. (Unlikely? Check. Outsiders? Check. Took a game off the MGod? Check. And in the Grand Final!)
  • Most likely to emulate the RSA cricket team? Pulse Gaming Reborn. (We’re appropriately bleak. I mean, we were correct. But bleak about it nonetheless.)
  • Fan favorite? Damage Control. (The fans have been muted ever since DC exited the tournament.)
  • Prom King/Queen? Constant. (We called this one. 100% nailed it.) 
  • First to capture all three starter Pokemon? Ventus Gaming. (Sometimes life gives you Pidgeys. Unless you’re Ventus. Then that’s all you get.)
  • The [un]Official Telkom DGL DotA2 Community Shield 1 tagline? “Lose twice and you’re done!” (We all lost the moment Veneration Esports upgraded their lineup.)

TL;DR Veneration Esports vs Mythic Gaming in the Grand Final of the Telkom DGL DotA2 Community Shield. We predict significant amounts of the most awesome plays! JK we’re biased. Don’t trust us!

About @SargonDotA2

Chris "@SargonDotA2" House started writing about competitive local esports in 2016, focused primarily on DotA2 since he played competitively around that time as well. Since then we keep him locked up, churning out DotA2 articles as often as we can make him do it. @SargonDotA2 is sometimes referred to as the Batpanda...