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The Southeast Asian giants have been felled at their second hurdle of the Dota 2 qualifiers. TNC Predator lost their matchup against Reality Rift in the StarLadder ImbaTV Minor qualifiers earlier today and have been eliminated.
The loss means that the MDL Chengdu Major champions won’t attend the Minor and will also lose out on their sole chance at making the ESL One Los Angeles Major. One slot from the Major is reserved for the winner of the Minor.
TNC relied on one of their most successful strategies in the Morphling-Earthshaker combo for the third game of their series vs. Reality Rift. Despite the nerfs to each hero that had seen both drop heavily down the tier list, TNC remain one of the best teams in the world at using the combo. It wasn’t enough, however. Reality Rift’s Ravdan “Hustla” Narmandakh put in a performance of a lifetime on Skywrath Mage to eliminate the Major champions.
It’s not the end of the world for TNC, however. Their stellar performance in the early part of the season saw them win the first Major, which has likely guaranteed their participation at The International 2020. The SEA team is still sitting pretty on top of the Dota Pro Circuit rankings, but they’ll likely be usurped after the LA Major.
With rival team Vici Gaming also electing to sit out the LA Major, this might be the perfect time for TNC to rest. Practically every top team has followed in OG’s example after their TI8 win and elected to take a break at some point during the season. The opportunity to take the break might see TNC return stronger and better than before.