India will be taking on the leading DOTA 2 teams from Asia in the LAN qualifiers of the World Esports Championships 2023 from July 10 to 13 in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Eight elite DOTA 2 teams will be competing in the Asian qualifiers for the prize pool of USD 12,500 (INR 10.33 lakhs) across two groups from July 10-13.
Team India, led by captain Manav Kunte (mnz), alongside Vishal Vernekar (HBK), Abhishek Yadav (Abhi-), Shahbaz Hussain (PinkMaN), and Krish Gupta (Krish`) will begin its campaign against Mongolia and the Philippines on the opening day before going head-to-head with Kyrgyzstan on Day 2.
Two of India’s esports athletes, Abhinav Tejan (Tekken 7) and Ibrahim Gulrez (eFootball) have already secured their qualification in the World Championships which has a prize pool of $500,000 (INR 4.12 crore).
The WEC 2023 is set to be the largest edition of the tournament with at least 130 countries participating in eFootball, DOTA 2, Tekken7, Mobile Legends, PUBG: Mobile and CS: GO.
“Going into the Asian qualifiers, our goal is crystal clear: to qualify for the 15th World Esports Championships. The journey will be challenging against some of the best DOTA 2 outfits from Asia but we will go out all guns blazing and leave no room for errors,” said captain Kunte.
“We are confident of our talent as a team and apart from our preparations, our team bonding, as well as strategies, will help us come out on top.”
All group stage matches will be contested in the best-of-one format followed by the quarterfinals, semifinals, and grand finals which will be played in the best-of-three format.
The champion in DOTA 2 will be rewarded with USD 7000 in prize money with the second and third-placed teams being awarded USD 3,500 and USD 2,000 respectively.
Having won the National Esports Championships (NESC) 2023, conducted by the Esports Federation of India (ESFI) earlier this year, the team made its way to the Asian qualifiers by beating Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal in the South Asian qualifiers in May.
The squad’s prominent players Vishal and Abhishek were also part of the historic DOTA 2 team that won the bronze medal at the Commonwealth Esports Championships in 2022.
After the DOTA 2 qualifiers, India’s male and female CS: GO teams will also play their Asian qualifiers, with the former in action from July 13-17 while the women will have their qualifiers from July 15-17.
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