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Underdogs shine as Faceless, Team NP come through in crunch time on their way to second day's main event


By Antonio Pascual

PASAY--The first series of the day saw new front-runners NP go up against the heavily favored Invictus Gaming. What looked to be an easy stomp on paper quickly became a lop-sided win for Team NP. NP's recent shuffle pick-ups Aui_2000 and PieLieDie showed just how much difference top-tier supports can be. PieLieDie brought out a position 5 batrider which would have most teams dumbfounded, maximizing the hero without any farm. While Aui_2000 ran both Treant Protector and Brewmaster on a position 4 with such efficiency, reminding us all that this man is indeed a TI champion.

The second series of the day matched, the four-time Major Champions, OG against, the Kings of Southeast Asia, Faceless. IceIceIce, easily a crowd favorite of the tournament, and his band of brothers brought out the pain in a big way. The day started off rough for the Singaporean team as they played convincingly during the early game before crumbling to OG's teamwork late in the first match. The Kings of SEA came up with the most unorthodox pick of the day bringing out an Anti-mage mid. Jabz' early rotations on the clockwork paved the way for what would be an amazing game from Black^. Ironically, OG's run would end with the bitter taste of their own medicine. Faceless won their deciding match with a Naga Siren mid, one of OG's staple heroes. 

Our main event featured the two biggest underdog stories of the tournament, NP versus Faceless. Faceless got off to a quick win thanks to Jabz' high-precision hook's and an amazing game from IceIceIce's Nyx Assassin who synergized well with Black^'s Invoker. Np went back to their unorthodox picks bringing out a FATA Phantom Lancer mid to go along EternalEnvy's Bristleback. It was MSS though who stole the show, completely destroying a tri-lane gank attempt which snowballed them to victory. NP took no chances on their close-out game taking mostly comfort heroes during the draft. Aui_2000's early rotations with the Enchantress dictated the paced of the game which saw NP take a 16 kill lead even before the 20 minute mark on their way to victory. 

NP advances to the loser's bracket finals which will see them go head-to-head against North American powerhouse Evil Geniuses.

Follow him on Twitter: @IGIPASCUAL
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