Welcome to ESL One Fall: Bootcamp Edition, where recruits need to get themselves into fighting shape and prove they’ve got what it takes to survive the battlefield of The International. Seasoned veterans will take on young whippersnappers taking their first shot at TI in the last cross-region tournament before the Bucharest showdown. With our ESL One Summer winners T1 trying to defend their title from internationally dominating PSG.LDG, and VP and Alliance out to show they can hold their own in a cross-regional test of skills, the tournament is sure to have plenty of obstacles to put each team through their paces.
A team that has been able to dominate the last two DPC seasons, Virtus Pro have been undefeated in the EEU league, but failed to find much success on LAN. The squad were only able to win one series across both Majors, knocking Quincy Crew out of the Singapore Major before being ejected by the South American underdogs Thunder Predator. As a very fresh-faced team, this is one of two rosters with no TI experience at the tournament, making it even more important for the youngsters to prove they’re up for the challenge.
Our reigning ESL One champions have been gaining momentum throughout the season, pulling out incredible performances to battle with the best and come out victorious. A poor performance in the wildcards at the Singapore Major lit a fire within them, with the squad coming out swinging at the Animajor to take the 3rd spot, before making an impressive comeback from 2-1 down in the ESL One Summer finals to beat VP and take the title. Are T1 going to be an unstoppable force, or could the South American Dota style bring them to a screeching halt?
The Thunder Predator squad stole hearts at the Singapore Major after a surprising 12-2 group stage result turned them into everyone’s favourite underdog. Heading back home with 5-6th place, and a number of new fans, the team turned their sights to the Animajor, but were disappointingly unable to qualify. A recreation of the squad’s Singapore success at ESL One will go a long way to boosting their confidence ahead of TI.
As one of the top competitors in the EEU region, Team Spirit have been looking for opportunities to step out from the shadow of VP and show off what they can do. An impressive run at the Animajor and domination in lower tier competitions has proven the boys are here to win, but the squad haven’t yet been able to secure a win in top-tier Dota. Does Spirit have what it takes to keep up with the best of the best in the run-up to TI?
A force to be reckoned with, Tundra had a decent run through the DPC seasons which saw the squad enter two fierce tiebreakers, battling against OG and Liquid for a spot at the Singapore Major at the end of season one, before fighting for survival in the upper division against OG and Brame. After failing to make it to either of this year’s majors, Tundra’s first chance to show off what they’re made of in an international arena at ESL One Summer saw them crash out in 9-12th place. Can the team who nearly took OG’s spot at TI away gain the tactical advantage at ESL One?
It’s been an interesting year for Creepwave, with a number of roster changes finally leading three of the original team back to the squad. Without a spot in next season’s DPC league secured, the squad will be out to cause a few upsets and show they’re not a team to be taken lightly.
Two very strong DPC seasons from Alliance have given them everything they need to make it to TI, but so far the team have struggled to find any success in the international competitions.
As the only team to attend both majors and fail to win a single series, the squad has a lot to prove when going up against teams from outside Europe. A strong showing in ESL One Summer saw them walk away with 3rd place, being knocked out by eventual winners T1. Can Alliance prove they’re fighting fit and ready to battle with the other regions?
Despite being one of the pinnacle teams in South American Dota, beastcoast have had a difficult run this year on the international stage. The squad were unable to compete at the Singapore Major due to Covid-related issues, and came last in the group stage at the Animajor after a lackluster performance. This is the team’s last chance to prove they haven’t lost their touch and can still take on the international competition before TI. Can the beastcoast boys get back in formation and surpass their TI9 form?
There’ll be no saving strats in the Liquid team room, as this will be the last showing before the boys prepare for a long few months without any major competitions. Yet another team that performed reasonably well in the DPC leagues before having a rocky time on the international stage, Liquid will be looking to prove they’re still a worthy opponent who can’t be underestimated.
After a thoroughly average performance in the DPC seasons, SG-esports were not one of the favourites to make it to TI, making it all the more surprising when the squad beat the likes of NoPing and Infamous to take the Open Qualifier slot for South America. This will be their first chance to go head-to-head with the best teams the international scene has to offer, and will show whether the squad are ready for the trials TI will have to throw at them. Will the international rookies be able to give the competition a run for their money?
After a turbulent year, bouncing between the upper and lower division, Team Empire are finally on a well-deserved up. The team will be returning to the upper division of the EEU DPC league next season, and narrowly lost out on a spot at TI. From failing to qualify to ESL One Summer, to taking the top spot at open qualifiers, the squad have come a long way, and are out to show they can battle with the best.