The culmination of the 2023 professional Dota 2 season is approaching. We’ll be watching the world’s best teams play at The International 2023 in October, but before that, qualifiers for the season’s main tournament will be held in all competitive regions.
Valve has partially changed the format of qualifiers in 2023. Firstly, there will be no Wild Card stage at The International, which was held in 2022, and secondly, the number of slots for the main event of the year has changed. Western Europe and South America have two additional slots, the owners of which will be determined at qualifying, while other regions have one slot each at The International.
Esports analyst Yurij Sheremet revealed which of the teams in The International 2023 Qualifiers are the most likely to claim a place at the main tournament.
Western Europe Qualifier
At the DPC 2023 Western Europe rules the ball. While in the past Eastern Dota 2 was able to compete with the representatives of the “Old World” to a large extent in the form of China, this season Western Europe was rid of any competition.
Gaimin Gladiators, as the main WEU team for the 2023 season, won all 3 Major tournaments in the year, thus repeating the achievement of the OG Golden Squad. In addition to GG, Liquid, who consistently finished in 2nd place at Valve tournaments, became an attribute of Western Europe. And then there was Tundra, OG, Quest.
That’s why we expect the most heresy matches from the qualifications for The International 2023 in Western Europe. The chance to see them is quite big, because among the participants of the qualifiers there are a lot of top teams: Quest Esports, Entity, Nigma Galaxy, Team Secret, OG. They will be accompanied by 8 more teams.
The participants will have to determine 2 teams that will join Gaimin Gladiators, Team Liquid and Tundra Esports in Seattle in the group stage of The International in October. And from the looks of it, Quest Esports and OG have the best chance of getting through.
Quest Esports have shown quite an upgrade in their game since moving to the top division of DPC in the middle of the year. Their peak was the Top 4 of The Bali Major 2023, where they were a serious competitor to grands like GG and Team Liquid. However, the main obstacle on the way to The International 2023 is personnel changes. Before the Riyadh Masters 2023, the headliner ATF left the team, and it is difficult to replace him.
The second obvious contender for passage remains OG. Residents of the top division of Western Europe, they took place at Berlin Major 2023 where they reached the top 5.
From less obvious, but still competitors can be noted Entity, clearly experiencing difficulties in the course of the season 2023, but still have a chance to get to The International
South America Qualifier
The second most important region for Valve in 2023 is South America. It’s hard to explain the region’s two qualifiers for The International 2023.
Beastcoast and Evil Geniuses, the region’s top stars, earned a direct entry to The International 2023 thanks to their consistent performance at Major events and sufficient DPC points, while the fate of the remaining two spots for South America will be determined by the 13 remaining teams.
Among The International 2023 SA Qualifiers, Thunder Awaken stand out the most. The club was constantly on the heels of Beastcoast and Evil Geniuses and ended up with 343 DPC points.
In addition to Thunder Awaken, Infinity can also be highlighted. The Peruvians scored 160 DPC points and clearly don’t want to miss the chance to play in the main arena of the year.
However, South America is famous for its fickleness (Beastcoast aside), so we can expect surprises. They can be delivered by ex-Infinity with LeoStyle at the helm and the Brazilians from Keyd Stars, who won the second division of South America in season 3. All in all, it should be The International heresy.
One of the most competitive regions in 2023 remains China. Although the local teams do poorly on the international stage, close battles are constantly being sharpened within the DPC league. Such will be the case at The International 2023 China Qualifiers, where 15 teams are fighting for 1 slot at The International 2023.
Among the participants there are several top teams at once. These are Team Aster, Azure Ray, Xtreme Gaming and Invictus Gaming. The clear favourite to qualify is Team Aster.
The Chinese Dota Grand visited all the Majors in the 2023 season, finishing Top 8 at Lima and Berlin Major and Top 12 at Bali Major 2023. That was enough to score 486 DPC points, but not enough to qualify directly for The International and now Aster will have to play against their regional counterparts.
The main opponents will be the star-studded Azure Ray squad with Somnus M and fy in the line-up, who appeared on the professional scene ahead of The Bali Major 2023, as well as the equally star-studded Xtreme Gaming.
Eastern Europe Qualifier
The 2023 season was shock therapy for Eastern Europe. It started with a rather pale The Lima Major 2023, but continued with a cheerful Berlin Major 2023 with Top 3 for 9 Pandas and a good The Bali Major 2023, but with Top 6 for the same “Pandas”.
At home, teams from Eastern Europe were constantly competing against each other, which led to BB, Spirit and 9 Pandas exchanging pleasantries with each other. Thanks to this, all Eastern European top clubs went to The International, and the region secured 4 spots at the main tournament of the year for the first time ever. The last slot will be fought for at The International 2023 EEU Qualifiers.
Thirteen teams will take part in the qualifiers. Among the favourites in the race are Vp, One Move, Hydra and NaVi.
The contender for the slot, once again, will be Vp. They haven’t played any tournaments from Valve this year, but have consistently been in the top 4 of DPC seasons, earning 218 DPC points.
Southeast Asia Qualifier
Southeast Asia hasn’t had any impressive results this year, but there are still some landmark achievements. Earlier in the year, Talon Esports finished in the top 3 at Lima Major 2023, which earned them direct entry to The International, but their counterparts were less fortunate.
The International 2023 SEA Qualifiers will feature 15 teams. The prize ѕtunet the only slot for the main tournament of the year.
The list of participants includes names like Execration, Bleed, Blacklist, and SMG. They ѕtuput the main contenders to win.
Execration has the most chances to earn a ticket to Seattle. The team attended all Major andVent seasons and although they didn’t rise above the top 16, they earned 740 DPC points thanks to their regional results. That’s more than any other club in all regions.
However, Bleed and Blacklist have 500 and 360 points respectively, so Execration will not have an easy ride.
North America Qualifier
Last but not least is North America. In the 2023 season, North America will get 3 clubs at the main tournament at once.
Two seats at The International 2023 North America received directly. Shopify Rebellion and TSM became their owners, but the fate of another ticket will be decided at The International 2023 NA Qualifiers.
There will be 14 teams competing for the last slot from North America. However, the winner of the ticket to Seattle will most likely be Stunt Nouns.
Among all participants of The International 2023 NA Qualifiers Nouns are the only ones who have experience of playing on the international stage, and also have a very solid performance for this level for the season. Gunnar’s team earned 493 DPC points for the season, and before the Long Sogneg of the Qualifiers, secured the support of the legendary Peruvian – K1.