Participants of The International 10: Virtus.pro
Virtus.pro is one of the strongest leading teams of the CIS region. Even though the team has frequently undergone various reshuffles and changes, VP have won numerous DOTA 2 championships over its history.
History of Virtus.Pro
In November 2020 the organization disbanded its core Dota 2 roster:
- Igor «iLTW» Filatov;
- Vladimir «No[o]ne» Minenko;
- Roman «Resolut1on» Fominok;
- Bakyt «Zayac» Emilzhanov;
- Alexey «Solo» Berezin.
And, unexpectedly, made the academy VP.Prodigy the main roster, which will perform under the Virtus.pro organization tag. These changes were made due to unsuccessful results of VP core team and successful academic squad games.
The academic squad of VP.Prodigy was formed on April 1, 2020, and consisted of former players of the main squad of VP:
In October, the latter two were replaced by Gpk and Ilias.
For 2020 the academy guys managed to win the Epic League and earn $65 000, reach the finals of OGA Dota PIT S3 and WePlay! Pushka League S1. But they were beaten dry in both finals by Team Secret. As of October 2020, the VP roster looked like this:
- Egor «Epileptick1d» Grigorenko;
- Daniil «Gpk» Skutin;
- Dmitry «DM» Dorokhin;
- Vitaly «Save» Melnik;
- Ilyas «Illias» Ganeyev.
The first tournament with a new line-up
The first tournament for the new «bears was a $500 000 EPIC League Season 2 Division 1. In their first group stage match, they faced OG, who they beat without much trouble 2-0 on the maps. VP played 3 more matches against Just Error, mudgolems, and Nigma. In all three matches, they won. The most interesting was the game against the former VP squad, who played under the Just Error tag at the event. It was a principle match for each team, the outcome of which determined the strongest VP lineup. Despite a close 2-1 score in favor of the new VP roster, the old squad looked much worse compared to them.
Then came the matches against ViKin.gg and Team Liquid, in which VP lost by a score of 1-2. As a result, CIS fans saw the long-awaited derby between Virtus.Pro and Natus Vincere. It should be noted that NaVi also had a losing streak of two defeats. The favorite of the CIS derby was the «bears» and as a result, they won the match with a score of 2-1 on the maps.
After the important victory over NaVi, Virtus.pro played two more group stage matches against Team Secret and Alliance, which they won and advanced to the playoffs, where Viruts.pro defeated Team Secret again. The meeting with ViKin.gg also ended with VP's victory.
In the grand final, Virtus.pro faced their first opponent in the championship, OG. After a win-streak of 5 in a row by VP, no analysts doubted their triumph. On the first map, VP defeated OG 47-10. Then OG had two matchups in a row with a score of 31-17 and 20-4. Virtus.pro was able to win back on the fourth map 38:16. In the decisive match, VP was also stronger and won 26:11.
It was a real triumph for the Russian team that in literally one month after changing its status in the organization could win such a prestigious tournament and earn $200 000.
Five days after the end of the EPIC League, the Russian team took part in OGA Dota PIT Season 4: Europe and CIS. In the first playoff match, they faced their «old friends» from OG. This time it was OG who was stronger and won with a 1-2 score. Next, Virtus.pro faced ViKin.gg and again the Russian team was stronger, winning 2-1. That was their last playoff triumph. In their next match against Alliance VP lost 1-2 and left the tournament. OGA Dota PIT Season 4: Europe and CIS was the final tournament for VP in 2020.
Matches in 2021
The first championship in 2021 for the «bears» was Dota Pro Circuit 2021: Season 1 - CIS Division 1. The main favorites of the tournament were Virtus.pro and NaVi, and they were supposed to meet in the final. Virtus.pro played 6 matches before the grand final, in 5 of them they won without hesitation with a score of 2-0. Only Team Spirit fought VP and managed to win the first map. After that, the outcome of the match was the same for «dragons» as for all previous VP opponents. The Russian team took the next two maps with ease.
In the grand final, a true el Classico of the Dota 2 CIS-region world took place - Virtus.pro vs Natus Vincere. Just like in the previous game, VP were the favorites - they won with a score of 2-0 and became the champions. They also secured their place in the top CIS ranking.
ONE Esports Singapore Major 2021
Virtus.pro took part in the ONE Esports Singapore Major 2021, starting straight from the playoff stage.
Their first opponent was PSG.LGD, and Virtus.pro couldn't handle them, losing 0-2. In their second playoff match, they played against the Americans from Quincy Crew, beating them 2-1. The match against Thunder was the last for VP at ONE Esports Singapore Major 2021. The team from Peru effortlessly defeated the Russian team 2-0. It was 24-9 on the first map and 25-10 on the second one.
Dota Pro Circuit 2021: Season 2
Two weeks later, another championship for the CIS region kicked off - Dota Pro Circuit 2021: Season 2 - CIS Division 1. In the first match VP faced AS Monaco Gambit and won with a score of 2-1. Then VP played 4 more matches against PuckChamp, Unique, NaVi, and EXTREMUM, in each of which the «bears» won 2-0.
In the sixth match, VP faced Team Spirit, who had previously played with VP. That time the «dragons» didn't give their opponents a chance to win easily. The situation repeated itself during this meeting - Viruts.pro confidently took the first map and Team Spirit successfully took the second. The Russian «bears» were stronger on the third map.
In the finals, Virtus.pro faced Winstrike. As expected, VP had no problems winning two maps and became the champions of the second Dota Pro Circuit 2021 season for the CIS.
WePlay AniMajor 2021
The WePlay AniMajor 2021 was another proof that it's not always possible for a team that dominates your region to play in other regions as well. At WePlay AniMajor, the «bears» started right from the playoff stage, having played only two matches against Nigma (0-2) and VG (1-2), and lost in both - they were eliminated from the tournament.
It was probably the most disappointing tournament of the entire half-year, but Virtus.pro did not lose heart and was preparing for a new event - ESL One Summer 2021. In the first match, VP won without any problems over OG, with a score of 32-9 and 30-6. In the last match of the playoffs, the Bears played T1, wherein in an emotional confrontation they came out victorious with a score of 2-1 on maps.
In a tight match, they beat Alliance 2-1 on the cards. In the last match of the playoffs, the Bears played T1, wherein an emotional confrontation they came out victorious with a score of 2-1 on cards.
In the grand final, they faced T1 again. The team from South Korea took the first map, VP answered on the second and third, and T1 parried on the fourth. Everything was determined on the last map, where T1 won and became ESL One Summer 2021 champions. Despite the loss and second place, Virtus.pro showed a great game in the playoff stage and played well in the grand final.
Virtus.pro and their chances of winning TI10
For six months, the updated VP roster has proved that they are the top-1 team in the CIS and the main contenders from the region for The International 10. It should be noted that over these six months the VP roster remained the same, except that Egor «Epileptick1d» changed his nickname to «Nightfall» and Ilyas «Illias» on «Kingslayer».
However, if Virtus.pro shows a great game in their home region, they tend to play less well against European teams, often experiencing various problems within the game as well as communication issues.
If we compare VP's former and current rosters, then the latter shows the game at a much higher level.