Natus Vincere recruit new support pubstar illias for Dota 2 roster

Fresh meat from public matchmaking.

dota 2 navi zayac
Image via Natus Vincere

This article is brought to you by StatBanana, the best Dota 2 strategy tool.


Natus Vincere has gone to the Dota 2 pub scene to find its new position five support. Illias “illias” Ganeev, ranked fifth in the European server on the Dota 2 leaderboards, will complete Na’Vi’s roster, the organization announced today.

Na’Vi previously benched Akbar “SoNNeikO” Butaev, its previous position five and captain, due to “unsatisfactory results at [the] MDL Chengdu Major Qualifier.” The Ukrainian organization only managed to win two games at the qualifier, losing even to pub stacks that formed for the event.

Illias is a virtual unknown and will make his competitive debut with Na’Vi. At just 17 years old, he’s one in the long line of pubstars that other CIS organizations have plucked directly from the pipeline this year, like Virtus Pro picking up Egor “epileptick1d” Grigorenko and Vitalie “Save-” Melnic.

It’s unsurprising that so many CIS organizations are trying something new by recruiting young, high-skilled players with no prior professional experience, though. The region had a terrible showing at TI9, with both CIS representatives in the bottom half of the final placings. It’s the same story at the ongoing MDL Chengdu Major, where Gambit Esports and Team Spirit both finished dead last.

Na’Vi remains a legendary name in the Dota 2 scene. The organization had its heyday during the infancy of the professional circuit, winning the first International and ending runners-up for the next two. Recent years have been less kind, however, with Na’Vi most recently finishing top-16 at TI9. The organization likely hopes that its new blood will aid its quest for parity in the 2019-2020 competitive season.