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The final day of the ESL One Dota 2 Stockholm Major on Sunday (22 May) kicked off with a showdown between Western European juggernauts OG and Tundra Esports in the lower bracket finals.
OG soundly swept their regional rivals, 2-0, to secure a spot in the Major grand finals against North American powerhouse TSM FTX.
OG were on fire to start the series, as they took their first win in a 27-minute stomp and with a 31-12 kill lead.
The team's carry player, Artem "Yuragi" Golubiev, paced his team's 19-kill advantage with a dominant 15-kill, one-death showing on Monkey King.
Stand-in support player Sébastien "Ceb" Debs also had another stand-out performance on his signature Windranger pick, extending his winning streak on games in the Major with the hero to 10 games.
OG smelled blood in the water in game two, as they routed Tundra in 35 minutes of action to secure the 2-0 series sweep.
Midlaner Bozhidar "bzm" Bogdanov on Puck and offlaner Ammar "ATF" Al-Assaf on Bloodseeker both notched 10 kills with just one death apiece to pace their team's 33-15 kill lead.
With their victory, OG have secured at least a Top 2 finish in the Stockholm Major and at least US$100,000 and 610 Dota Pro Circuit (DPC) points in winnings.
This will be the first Major grand finals for OG since the Kiev Major in 2017, when the team was still comprised of Johan "N0tail" Sundstein, Anathan "ana" Pham, Gustav "s4" Magnusson, Jesse "JerAx" Vainikka, and Tal "Fly" Aizik.
This is the organisation's fifth Major grand finals as well, with their previous four finals appearances all resulting in Major championships.
OG will now be looking to become the first-ever Dota 2 organisation to claim five Major championships as they challenge TSM for the Stockholm Major title.
Meanwhile, Tundra Esports bow out of the tournament with an admirable third place finish and with US$75,000 and 530 DPC points in consolation.
The Stockholm Major grand finals will be a best-of-five series, with the victors claiming the championship as well as the grand prize of US$200,000 and 680 DPC points.
Here's a breakdown of OG's victory over Tundra Esports in the lower bracket finals:
Tundra started off their game one draft with an offlane Visage for Neta "33" Shapira and a support Doom for Martin "Saksa" Sazdov. It wasn't a particularly strong offlane duo for Tundra but the two heroes hit a big power spike when they reach level six.
Tundra made up for their weak offlane with a strong safe lane combo featuring Oliver "skiter" Lepko's Juggernaut and Jingjun "Sneyking" Wu's Lich. Midlaner Leon "Nine" Kirilin played Invoker, a hero who has been ignored at the Major so far.
It was a different lineup for OG, as they focused heavily on winning the laning stage. A support Viper was picked for Tommy "Taiga" Le, which worked fantastically with Yuragi's Monkey King. Bozhidar "bzm" Bogdanov provided the squad with the necessary lockdown on his Puck.
A surprising move by OG is to switch the roles of their two supports. Taiga played as the position five support in both games while Ceb played as a position four. In game one of the series, Ceb picked Windranger, a hero he is currently 11-0 in the tournament. Ammar "ATF" Al-Assaf rounded up the draft with Timbersaw.
Despite a stronger laning lineup for OG, the team wasn't able to get an advantage early on. Tundra was prepared for the aggression and repaid OG for every kill they got.
Then everything changed when Tundra overextended and tried to bring down Ceb in the bottom lane. Ceb survived on a sliver of health and took down the carry of Tundra along with Saksa.
Despite Ceb's big play, it was still an even game for the two squads. While Tundra suffered slightly in the lanes, they were able to make up for it by using Doom's Devour to cut the networth deficit.
While Tundra could keep pace with OG's farm, they couldn't keep up with their map movements. Thanks to having Puck, Windranger, and Monkey King, OG's mobile lineup was able to move from lane to lane to secure kills. This was readily apparent 16 minutes into the game, when OG brought down four heroes while losing nothing themselves.
After securing the map for themselves, OG only gave up three deaths before forcing the GG call in 27 minutes. Yuragi had an absolutely astounding performance as he nabbed 15 kills for himself. Ceb was also a contender for game MVP thanks to his incredible play early in the game that got the snowball rolling for OG.
In game two, OG started off the draft by picking Chaos Knight, the most contested carry at the Major and a powerful laning hero. Bzm stuck with Puck while ATF took Bloodseeker for the first time in his pro career. Ceb continued playing as the position four in game two, this time on Monkey King.
Realizing that they needed stronger lanes in game two, Tundra opened their draft with a Pugna for Sneyking. Pugna is currently the most contested support in the tournament. Skiter then took Troll Warlord while Nine was in charge of making space on Pangolier.
33 played the offlane Doom and Saksa rounded up the draft with Hoodwink. Tundra had a decent draft in game two yet their heroes lacked the stuns necessary to control OG's elusive heroes, especially Puck.
Game two followed the same script as the opening game of the series. Neither squad managed to pull ahead in the laning stage until Ceb made a huge play at the 10-minute mark, bringing down Skiter while again staying alive on a sliver of HP.
In another mirror to game one, OG secured a big win for themselves 16 minutes into the game. Tundra lost three heroes and a massive ancient stack, firmly giving OG control of the game.
OG dealt the death blow at the 27-minute mark. As Ceb baited Tundra to chase him, OG managed to bring down 33 and then used their superior chasing abilities to teamwipe Tundra while only losing Taiga.
Tundra simply had no way of locking down OG's heroes and tapped out after 35 minutes. OG's drafting and Ceb's incredible performance in both games secured the team a spot in the Stockholm Major grand finals.
Artiem "Yuragi" Golubiev
Bozhidar "bzm" Bogdanov
Ammar "ATF" Al-Assaf
Tommy "Taige" Le
Sébastien "Ceb" Debs (stand-in)
Johan "N0tail" Sundstein (stand-in coach)
Tundra Esports roster:
Oliver "skiter" Lepko
Leon "Nine" Kirilin
Neta "33" Shapira
Martin "Saksa" Sazdov
Jingjun "Sneyking" Wu
Kurtis "Aui_2000" Ling (coach)
Otomo is a long-time gaming enthusiast and caster. He has been playing games since he was 10 and is the biggest Dota 2 fan.