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The latest chapter of the storied rivalry between two-time defending world champions OG and North American juggernauts Evil Geniuses (EG) kicked off day three of The International 10 (TI10) Group Stage.
While OG absolutely dominated game one, EG were able to pull off an impressive comeback in game two to force the series to a 1-1 draw. Former EG midlaner and now OG carry player, Sumail "SumaiL" Hassan, played excellently throughout the entire series while his ex-teammate, Artour "Arteezy" Babaev, led the way for the North American team in game two.
Game one ended up being the second-fastest game of TI10 thus far, as OG forced the GG call from EG after just 21 minutes of action.
Despite having the weaker laning line-up on paper, the two-time defending champions somehow got off to a dominant early game and proceeded to snowball from there. SumaiL on Juggernaut led the way for OG with a clean seven kills and three assists out of his team's 16 total kills.
EG looked to bounce back in game two behind Arteezy's Ursa, with Daryl "iceiceice" Koh on Lycan tasked with buffing his carry in teamfights with his hero's Aghanim's Scepter. Meanwhile, Abed "Abed" Yusop on Ember Spirit, Andreas "Cr1t-" Nielsen on a support Monkey King, and Tal "Fly" Aizik on Silencer manned the flanks.
On the other side of the field, OG were running with a very unusual line-up that featured a mid Gyrocopter for Topias "Topson" Taavitsainen and an offlane Io for Sébastien "Ceb" Debs.
While SumaiL on Faceless Void, Martin "Saksa" Sazdov, and Johan "N0tail" Sundstein on Treant Protector were playing relatively normal heroes, OG's line-up had some serious synergy issues.
The two-time defending champions quickly hushed all doubts as they got off to a dominant start. With Ceb's Io receiving early farm as a core, he was able to quickly buy Holy Locket and Mekansm to sustain OG as they went on the offensive.
And, with Topson's mid Gyrocopter dealing the damage early on, SumaiL was given enough space to catch up from a rough laning phase to eventually dominate the midgame fights with some insane Chronospheres.
Despite getting rolled over by OG for much of the game, EG were still able to keep their base relatively intact and stall long enough for Arteezy to come online. With iceiceice's Lycan getting Aghanim's Scepter to give a huge buff to Arteezy's already fearsome Ursa, EG were able to finally punish their opponent's aggression and swing the momentum in their favour.
The synergy issues with OG's line-up popped up again at the worst time for them, as they didn't have enough damage to deal with EG even as SumaiL continued to land some great Chronospheres.
In the end, EG were able to take game two in just under 40 minutes, with Arteezy notching up 14 kills and nine assists against five deaths.
Both OG and EG are in good position to finish TI10's Group Stage in the Top 4 of Group A, which would give both of them an upper bracket berth in the Main Event.
OG have one more match to play in day three against another North American team in Undying, while EG will be taking on Thunder Predator from South America and VP from Eastern Europe.
TI10's Group Stage features the 18 participating teams split into two groups of nine teams each. The teams will be looking to finish in the Top 4 of their groups in order to secure an upper bracket berth in the Main Event. Meanwhile, the fifth to sixth-placed teams will have to start the Main Event from the lower bracket while the bottom team of each group will be eliminated early.
TI10 is this year's iteration of Dota 2's annual world championship tournament. The event features 18 of the best Dota 2 teams in the world battling from 7 to 17 October in Bucharest, Romania for the right to claim the lion's share of a massive US$40 million prize pool as well as the coveted Aegis of Champions.
For everything you need to know about TI10, check here.
OG Dota 2 roster:
Sumail "SumaiL" Hassan
Topias "Topson" Taavitsainen
Sébastien "Ceb" Debs
Martin "Saksa" Sazdov
Johan "N0tail" Sundstein
Evil Geniuses Dota 2 roster:
Artour "Arteezy" Babaev
Abed "Abed" Yusop
Daryl "iceiceice" Koh
Andreas "Cr1t-" Nielsen
Tal "Fly" Aizik
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