Three days after being removed from Fnatic, the team’s former offlaner Chong Xin “Ohaiyo” Khoo has shared his thoughts on the situation.
According to Ohaiyo, he was told that he would be replaced by former Evil Geniuses offlaner Saahil “UNiVeRsE” Arora a mere hours after the team had successfully qualified for the ESL One Katowice Major. He was also told that UNiVeRsE had arrived in Malaysia a few days before their victory in the qualifier, meaning the decision to replace Ohaiyo had already been taken prior to the team qualifying.
“This is how cruel they are,” the player said in a Facebook post. “no matter the tournament win or lose, I will be replaced. I’m not upset about being replaced, I’m disappointed on being used by my teammates for their own benefit.”
The timing of Ohaiyo’s exit means that the 24-year-old will not be able to sign with a new team as the next free agency period in the Valve Major circuit opens on Feb. 5. As such Ohaiyo will not be able to attend ESL One Genting Minor on Jan. 23, and is unlikely to find a roster to compete with for the ESL One Katowice Major on Feb. 20.
The situation has ignited a discussion about the roster rules within the Dota Pro Circuit, and the fairness of replacing a player who has qualified for an event. “They could just replace me once Universe is here,” Ohaiyo said. “but not after we got the slot to ESL One Katowice. Perhaps they worry about losing the slot to a major event.”
Ohaiyo, who competed on Fnatic for three years, has often been heralded as one of the best players from Malaysia. Competing alongside Chai “Mushi” Yee Fung, he was able to reach the top three at The International 3, and finish in the final four at The International 6.