Team Secret wins the Chongqing Major; secures a spot at TI9

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The Chongqing Major has come to an end and Team Secret are the winners of the second Dota Pro Circuit Major. Team Secret faced Virtus Pro in a repeat of the Kuala Lumpur Major Grand finals. The team led by Puppey won the Grand finals after an interesting series including innovative drafts and playstyles.

With this victory, Team Secret is a confirmed mathematical entry to The International 2019. TI9 will take place in Shanghai during August 2019. Team Secret takes home the prize money of $350,000 and a total of 4950 Dota Pro Circuit points. We present a short review of the Games as they took place.

Game 1: Puppey’s Draft asserts its dominance

Image Credits: Starladder
A very fast paced game saw team Secret Pull ahead in Game 1.

Coming into the first game, MidOne was confident that they will not have a repeat of the Kuala Lumpur Major. Virtus Pro won the Kuala Lumpur Major after a fantastic 3-2 win over Team Secret in the Grand finals. However, Clement “Puppey” Ivanov had a strat-book ready for this Grand finals. Team Secret wanted revenge on Virtus Pro and they did not disappoint fans with their hero picks. The draft of the first game was innovative and gives Secret the chance to dictate the pace of the game.

Team Secret took a 2-1-2 Lane matchup as Phantom Lancer went on the top lane up against BeastMasters. He had Yapz0r on the Shadow Shaman along with him and he was up against the BeastMasters. They were able to take down 9Pasha’s BeastMaster multiple times, allowing Nisha to free farm and get really fast items. At one point in time, Nisha was 2000 Net worth higher than the second best hero in the game. However, they did not lose the bot lane either. Undying and Timbersaw are two extremely tanky heroes and they were able to outlast the damage from the Virtus Pro roster.


Team secret understood the advantage that they have very early. With no counters to the Timbersaw [ after Secret banned Outworld Destroyer], they were unstoppable in their first game. Timbersaw also built a Holy Locket on the hero with more sustain for Physical damage. When Team Secret pushed mid with the Rhasta wards, there was very little that Virtus Pro could do. They were planning for the late game, building items that would pay off 10 minutes later. However, Team Secret understood the opening, their timing and forced VP to play the game at their own pace.

Game 2: Team Secret end Game 2 in 17 minutes

Image Credits: Starladder
Tobi Wan had great fun casting the exciting 17-minute Game 2

The second Game has to be one of the most exciting games in 2019. It will remain etched in history as one of the most interesting drafts and perfect execution as well. The game started with Puppey drafting a 5-core lineup.

The analysts were surely surprised by this draft and they were unsure what the strategy was. However, Team Secret had the perfect execution with this lineup. Every person on the team knew their role and they had great synergy with each other.

The Team Secret Lineup included heroes such as Centaur, Sven, Luna, Outworld Devourer and Drow Ranger. With +6 attributes on level 1, Sven had 73 damage on the bottom lane. The Lunar Blessing buffs the primary attributes of all heroes in range. The Sven had more than 900 HP at Level 2 and was simply a huge pool of HP in the lane.

Image Credits: Starladder
Team Secret Player: Yeik “MidOne” Nai Zheng

The early game was very back and forth between the two teams. There was no clear advantage except in the bot lane which Team secret won with ease. Zai even died twice in the early game to the opponent Doom Ranger. However, Team Secret decided to constantly take fights and they started taking the advantage in the game very soon. After they took the Roshan due to a double damage rune on Nisha and they moved past mid. At 15 minutes, Team Secret was already knocking on the racks of Virtus Pro. They then moved to the top lane and continued the very early game pressure on their opponents. During the last team fight, OD had a BKB and he was able to negate any damage from the Pugna Nether Ward. Team Secret was able to put up a dominant performance at the Chongqing Major and was primed to make it 3-0 at this stage.

Game 3: Virtus Pro make a comeback.

The third game saw Team Secret continue to apply the early game pressure on Virtus Pro. They had a plan and as long as it was working, Team Secret did not feel the need to change their playstyle. Nisha played the Visage and once he hit Level 6, there was little that Virtus Pro could do to contain the team fight capability for Team Secret. They also had MidOne on the Outworld Destroyer. However, Virtus Pro picked up the Phantom Lancer [ on Ramzes666] against the lack of AOE damage from Team Secret.

Despite Team Secret being the first team to take a set of racks, it always felt that they were up against a timer. The Virtus Pro lineup scaled better into the late game and they wanted to delay the Team secret push as much as possible. The team fights were back and forth and Team Secret often came out on top. However, once Virtus Pro won the fight for the top racks [ with a few buybacks]; Phantom Lancer was simply unstoppable. He got around 5200 gold from the team fight and he was definitely a force to reckon with. As the Phantom Lancer got his Heart, there was little that Team Secret could do. He would go in and out of team fights; regenerate to full Health and go back in. Team Secret was strongest around the 25-minute mark. Unfortunately for them, the game progressed to around 40 minutes by when PL was just too strong for them.

Virtus Pro won Game 3, sparking hopes of a comeback and a potential Game 5.  

Game 4: A different Playstyle: Slow & Methodical

Image Credits: Team Secret.
Puppey decided to play Virtus Pro’s pace for the final game. And they still managed to win over VP.

After all the hype of the first three games, we were used to seeing an action-packed Game. For the first three games, Team Secret had proven that they were bound to a clock and they reached their peak performance around the 15-23 minute mark.

Puppey decided to take it slow in this game and he was able to display the class and finesse on Team Secret’s roster. Virtus Pro, on their part, expected Team Secret to go for a fast game and picked up the Juggernaut in an attempt to match their pace. Team Secret went with the OutWorld Destroyer and the Phantom Assasin as they wanted to end the series and claim the Major Trophy.

Team Secret’s movements ensured that they were able to out-position Virtus Pro. They would avoid the Doom at all costs and be able to disengage and then immediately re-engage in team fights. With excellent IO plays coming from YapZor, it was really difficult to find any kills for Virtus Pro. Ultimately the items became bigger and scaled better into the late game for Team Secret. They ultimately took down Virtus Pro in consecutive team fights, firmly establishing them as the best team in Dota 2 right now. With a runners-up finish at the previous Kuala Lumpur Major and their victory at this major, Team Secret are confirmed for TI9.

Final Standings

Image Credits: Cyborgmatt
The venue was sold out for the final day,


Here is a list of the final standings for the teams. Their DPC points earned and the prize money from the Chongqing Major 2019.

  1. Team Secret wins $350,000 and earns 4,950 DPC points. 
  2. Virtus Pro wins $170,000 and gets 3,000 DPC points. 
  3. Evil Genius wins $100,000 and earns 2,100 DPC points.
  4. PSG.LGD wins $80,000 and earns 1,350 DPC points. 
  • 5-6th place:  Ehome and Fnatic [ $60,000 and 900 DPC points ].
  • 7-8th place: Vici Gaming & Team Liquid. [ $40,000 and 450 DPC points ].
  • 9-12th Place: Chaos, Thunder Predator, J.Storm, TNC Predator. [ $15,000 and 150 DPC points ].
  • 13-16th Place: Alliance, The Pango, Forward Gaming, Team Aster. [ $10,000 and 75 DPC points ].

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