The first season of the 2021 Dota Pro Circuit's (DPC) Southeast Asian regional league has concluded, with Fnatic, Neon Esports, and T1 representing the region in the upcoming ONE Esports Singapore Major.
Fnatic have now reasserted themselves as the top dogs of Southeast Asia, topping the league with six wins and a 13-4 game record to secure a direct seed to the Major playoffs. Despite a surprising loss to BOOM Esports in Week 3, they scored big wins over T1 in Week 1, Neon Esports in Week 5, and TNC Predator in Week 6 to sit comfortably atop the standings.
As the top seed of the regional league's upper division, Fnatic also earned the grand prize of US$30,000 and 500 DPC points to go towards securing a direct invite to The International 10 (TI10) on top of their Major playoffs spot.
Neon Esports were the biggest surprise of the league, as they got off to a hot start and topped the standings by the end of Week 4 with a clean 5-0 match record. However, they lost their chance at getting a direct seed to the Major playoffs after losing their last two matches against Fnatic in Week 5 and T1 in Week 6.
Meanwhile, T1 rode a strong run late into the season to earn their place in Singapore. The team had a middling 2-2 match record by the end of Week 3, losing big matches to rivals Fnatic and TNC Predator. However, T1 went on to win their last three matches of the league against Execration, Vice Esports, and Neon Esports to punch their ticket to the Major.
Both Neon Esports and T1 ended the league's regular season with a 5-2 record and were tied for second place, forcing a best-of-three tiebreaker match on Saturday (27 February).
Neon Esports won the match, 2-1, to secure second place in the league and a spot in the Major group stage while T1 settled for third place and will have to start from the wildcard stage. In addition, Neon Esports earned US$28,000 and 300 DPC points for their second place finish, while T1 got US$27,000 and 200 DPC points.
Unfortunately, two Southeast Asian powerhouses will also be missing out on the Singapore Major: TNC Predator and BOOM Esports.
TNC Predator ends the season in fourth place with a 4-3 record, with those three losses coming from Fnatic, Neon Esports, and Execration. That loss to Execration in Week 1 badly hurt the team's chances of making it to the Major, as it was a match they were heavily favoured to win and would have gotten them in over T1. With that said, TNC Predator still earned US$26,000 and 100 DPC points for their efforts.
BOOM Esports struggled to integrate their new carry player for the season, Andrew "Drew" Halim, who signed with them in early January. With a lacklustre 2-3 record by the end of Week 4, the team was forced to remove Drew from the starting roster and signed Nuengnara "23savage" Teeramahanon as a stand-in for the rest of the season. Despite winning their last two matches with 23savage against Execration and Vice Esports, BOOM Esports still miss out on the Major and fifth in the standings with a 4-3 record. They still get US$25,000 and 50 DPC points in consolation.
Meanwhile, Execration manage to remain in the upper division for next season while 496 Gaming and Vice Esports will unfortunately be relegated to the lower division. The two relegated teams will be replaced by Lilgun and Omega Esports, the two top teams of the lower division for the first season of the league.
Here's a full breakdown of the league's results:
US$30,000, 500 DPC points
(2.) Neon Esports
Major Group Stage
US$28,000, 300 DPC points
US$27,000, 200 DPC points
(4.) TNC Predator
US$26,000, 100 DPC points
(5.) BOOM Esports
US$25,000, 50 DPC points
(7.) 496 Gaming
(8.) Vice Esports
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