TNC Predator exacted the sweetest revenge on its way to winning the first Major of the 2019/20 Dota Pro Circuit Season, the MDL Chengdu Major in China.
The Philippine-based squad of Kim "Gabbi" Villafuerte, Timothy "Tims" Randrip, Armel "Armel" Tabios, Australian Damien "kpii" Chok, and Korean Park "March" Tae-won had to take the longer and harder route to capture the revamped roster's second trophy, following the one from ESL One Hamburg in Germany.
TNC was almost unstoppable to start the tournament, sweeping Group A in the preliminaries and losing just one playoff match to Alliance. After they took care of business against J.Storm (2-0), the Southeast Asian group had the tables turned on them by hometown team Vici Gaming in the Upper Bracket Final (0-2).
TNC had to take down another Chinese squad, Lower Bracket finalist Invictus Gaming, to get another shot at VG in the grand finals — which they did.
Unlike their Upper Bracket meeting, the first two games of the best-of-five championship series between TNC and VG were both clearly in former's favor. The PH group brought back the Morphling and Earthshaker combination from the IG matchup and produced the same results.
Then, it looked like VG was about to pull of the reverse sweep, taking the do-or-die third match and nearly building a 30,000 gold lead in Game 4. But the return of TNC's Morphshaker combo and overall play from MDL Chengdu Major MVP Gabbi proved too much for the opposing team.
TNC didn't only take home USD 300,000 (more than PHP 15 million) and 4,850 DPC points, they also became the first SEA team to come out victorious in a Valve Major.
As of writing, TNC is ranked No. 1 in GosuGamers' Dota 2 World rankings with a 1350 rating, even better than The International defending champs OG (1328).