Every Team That Qualified for the Singapore Major 2021
The ONE Esports Singapore Major 2021 starts on March 27, but already we know which teams are headed to the event. With most leagues wrapped up by February 28, here’s a list of every team headed to the Major.
Note: This is just a current list, and will be updated as tiebreakers and other regions finish their qualify
China is due to finish its season on March 13, with any tiebreakers to take place the following weekend.
There were two clear front runners for the entire season in CIS. So it’s no massive surprise which two teams headline the CIS regions’ representatives at Singapore.
Playoff Spot: Virtus.pro
Virtus.pro locked in their spot with a flawless run, with their only real challenge coming against second place team Natus Vincere. The former VP.Prodigy lineup are undisputedly the top squad in the region. A step above everyone else, it’ll be incredibly exciting to see this stack unleashed on full international competition. They were able to handle Europe’s best in 2020 non-DPC events. Seeing them face off against China and SEA will be a treat.
Group Stage Spot: Natus Vincere
After spending 2020 as FlyToMoon before being signed to the Na’Vi brand, this talented stack has only improved. Providing almost four weeks of flawless play, Na’Vi were only defeated after an incredible performance from Team Spirit. Still, the rise of this squad from a consistent tier two performer, to a Major contender has been incredible. Their limited international experience may be their downfall though.
Wild Card Spot: AS Monaco Gambit
With big-name sponsors comes big-name responsibility. Luckily for AS Monaco Gambit, they were able to live up to their new title by squeezing past tiebreakers to make it to the Major. The former Live to Win roster were, like Na’Vi, a tier two team prior to this season. 2020 seems to have been a breath of fresh air for CIS Dota. Many older stacks have fallen by the wayside as newer lineups surge to the top.
Europe has been a one-horse race since day one, with Team Secret going almost undefeated in their run. They dropped just three games the entire season,
Playoff Spot: Team Secret
After a dominant 2020, Team Secret proved that they were still on top form by dunking on everyone else in their region. A perfect 7-0 match record with just a trio of lost games meant they’d locked in the top spot as early as Week Four. However, Secret was starved of international opportunities in 2020. Now, unleashed on the rest of the world at Singapore, will Team Secret continue their reign of destruction or wilt and fail?
Group Stage Spot: Alliance
Alliance has struggled. With lineup issues, with chemistry, with drafts that don’t quite make sense. They lost a third of its games with a 12-7 record, and yet you cannot fault their results. When a series is on the line, you can count on at least one of Alliances’ incredible players to pull out a performance that secures a victory. Whether it’s the team’s storied veterans or its more youthful members, the squad can always rely on someone to put the team on their back. Whether this will convert into wins at the Major is yet to be seen.
Wild Card Spot One: Team Nigma
Nigma has finally found their footing and are ready to get back to international competition. Historically, this lineup has done incredibly on LAN. But it’s also been almost a year since their last LAN appearance. Occasionally drafting mistakes, or players falling short of their proven potential trips up Nigma against top-tier opponents. If they’re able to turn up at Singapore, this could be a triumphant return for the stack, whose first season under their new org was badly thrown off course.
Wild Card Spot Two: Team Liquid
Team Liquid battled through a hellacious series of tiebreakers on Sunday, February 28. But ultimately they were able to grab the last possible spot at the major. Of the teams they defeated, OG, and Tundra, the squad looked by far the strongest and most consistent. This hasn’t always been the case during the season. If the squad can keep its momentum heading into Singapore, there’s no ceiling to their performance.
Having been nearly completely isolated from international competition (save a few tournaments with South America), sending strong competitors to the Major is essential for NA. Despite the results sending everyone you’d expect, the season has been a back and forth battle for the top.
Playoff Spot: Evil Geniuses
EG are somehow still the top team in North America. Despite skipping tournaments last year, and losing some of the ones they did participate in against “tier two” opponents, they haven’t missed a beat. Whether this EG can return to its 2020 form (pushing Team Secret to the limit and coming second place at a Major) remains to be seen. However, if there’s any team from NA that can do it, it’s this lineup.
Group Stage Spot: Quincy Crew
Quincy Crew had a dominant 2020, winning almost every tournament they entered during the online era of events. With biggest rivals EG often absent from these events, it couldn’t be said they were the undisputed kings of the region. Instead, despite beating them in the regular season, the team still had to give up the top spot after the best-of-one tiebreaker. If anything these teams are equally matched. That could be a good or bad thing for NA’s international chances
It’s been a two-horse race in South America from the start, but it’s still great to see these teams make the mark. That’s because both of these squads were on the cusp of brilliance before Covid forced events online.
Playoff Spot: beastcoast
An international contender forced into regional competition, beastcoast are headed to the Major with a chip on their shoulder. This is a team that was making headlines in 2019 for taking victories off organizations with ten-times their prestige. Seeing them back at a Major, after months of waiting, is one of the few signs that this new DPC system is working as intended.
Group Stage Spot: Thunder Predator
Thunder Predator began its surge for international recognition just after the global pandemic set in. This meant that instead of seeing a pair of highly competitive SA squads in international competition, we had to worry whether we’d ever get to see Thunder Predator on a LAN stage. Luckily the team has been successful enough to find its way to the top of the regional league. Now it’s time to hope this squad gets a favorable group.
Sometimes it’s easy to forget how many big names and international-level talents are hidden away in the Southeast Asian region. Luckily for us, the DPC has highlighted that this season, with a highly competitive season that came down to the wire. Even if the three representatives only scratch the surface of the talent of this region.
Playoff Spot: Fnatic
After a stellar start to 2020 that saw them pick up a number of titles, there were worries when Fnatic fell off late in the year. Luckily after a number of roster moves late last year, the squad has settled on a lineup that’s a winner. SEA Always has the potential to be a competitor or an international stage, but with minimal jet-lag in Singapore, this feels like a real chance for a Fnatic title.
Group Stage Spot: Neon Esports
Founding an esports team in late 2019 to early 2020 would have been a bitter pill to swallow for most. But Neon Esports were able to thrive in the online era, despite struggling to find a consistent position one carry for much of the year. Then, they were able to translate that success into numerous wins in the regional league, with only T1 to challenge for second place. On its best day, this team takes games of Fnatic. At its worse, it makes 469 Gaming look competitive. Hopefully the former heads to Singapore.
Wild Card Spot: T1
T1’s rocky launch into Dota 2 saw them struggle with team identity, falling flat with Korean players, and finally tilting into being a true SEA power. Arguably this is exactly what the team should have been from the start, with the name and prestige of T1 behind them. But after a rocky start to the season, it was great to see T1 surge in the final weeks and secure this spot, even if a lost tiebreaker game sent them to the wild cards.
The Singapore Major kicks off on March 28th, continuing until the grand finals on April 4. You can catch all the action streaming on ONE Esports’ official Twitch channel.