The International 2012 – Day 5

xFreedom will eat at Subway every meal if you let him.

xFreedom and, possibly, an adoring fan. Also, LGD’s manager.

Hopefully, that little tidbit of information would have distracted you enough to forget that I’m late in posting this update. So let’s jump right into it then!!

Team Zenith with Marc, our staff from Valve.

Team Zenith came into day 5 pretty relaxed, knowing that we have already secured a top 4 finish in the group. The only match that mattered was EG vs CLG, as they would be battling for the last slot in the top 4. Thus, when Zenith arrived at the Valve offices, it was no surprise that both these teams were in the manager’s stream room watching replays.

Hard at work at 8 in the morning.

The games vs aL were over rather quickly; the first of which was a 19-minute win for Zenith, while the second was a failed attempt at an Alchemist strat which resulted in an aL win. The rest of the day was spent lounging around and interacting with the others at the venue, while waiting for iceiceice and xy- to conclude their interviews with Valve.

If you don’t know who Gabe Newell is… you should be ashamed.

The lovely Christina Engel – lady boss of the tournament schedule.

Eventually, Zenith did play EG again. But this time, at the foosball table. I’m embarrassed to say EG shamed Zenith a second time as hyhy failed to make full use of his micro to win Maelk and Pusher (currently EG’s coach).

EG vs Zenith. Don’t bet on Zenith for this one.

Also, Dendi beat me 21-18 at table tennis.

Opa Dendi Ping Pong Gangnam Style!

Me, Na`Vi.Dendi, Darer.Goblin, EG.Bulba.

xy- looking pretty, doing nothing while Dendi owns me at ping pong.

The rest of the day was spent back in the hotel room. Some spent the time watching VODs and replays. Others took advantage of the free time to rest. At 7pm, we all headed over to a player’s dinner at The Harbor Club hosted by Valve.

Zenith looking good in the August Seattle sunshine.

Some people took it too literally when I said ‘dress up a little for the dinner’.

iceiceice all dolled up for the dinner.

Loda got Smile to smile for the camera.

Moving out to the dinner.

It was a pretty neat setting, holding it at the 25th floor of the Symetra building, giving us a majestic view of the nighttime Bellevue skyline. I’m just going to let the pictures do the majority of the talking.

The 25th floor is pretty damned high.

Fat dude points the way! Recognize him?

Outdoor reception BBQ and wine bar on the first floor.

Wine bar – most crowded place at the reception.

Best friends forever.

furryfish* being sandwiched between PGG and Xboct.

Southeast Asia represent!

iceiceice signing an autograph.

Chandeliers, good food, great view and fantastic company.

The Zenith table.

Loda is pretty popular with the guys as well.

Loda looking very pleased with his new The International backpack.

Pajkatt and Kuroky joins in the Asian drinking games!

Instructed by Xboct to put ‘MUSHI IS THE BEST’ in this caption. That’s Winter though….

CLG decides to challenge the Asians at their own drinking games!

Akke needing some help from Loda here.

Loda is thrilled that a Swede is not the loser, for the first time, in the drinking games.

Winter convinces Xboct to join in. Not that he needed much convincing.

Xboct proceeds to own everyone. Russians and their alcohol…

Pajkatt’s the first victim. He realizes after that gulp that it was 90% vodka, 10% cola.

Highlight of the night: Xboct and most of CLG coming over to join Orange and Zenith (and a Chuan) in a Chinese drinking game. Hilarity ensues as Pajkatt, Akke, Loda and Xboct struggle to pronounce Chinese words. It was an fun-filled evening for the players who could, for once in this first week in Seattle, let their hair down and party. It was a well-deserved break for them as well as the Valve staff. Hopefully this would energize everyone and get them all even more hyped up for the playoffs.

Come back in a day or two as our daily blog updates will resume on the first day of the playoffs at Benaroya Hall.



  1. dogmode

    another awesome blog entry! damn! Valve knows how to organize a tournament and they treat players well! so awesome! ^_^ go Zenith! do it for South East Asia!!! ^_^

  2. Dotk

    Awesome coverage and photos. Looks like an amazing time, all dota pros of different teams hangin out and gettin drunk.

  3. MoulQ

    good to know that pusher is eg’s coach now, i was wondering what he was doing there and by the way nice blog keep up the good work !

  4. ArtiXim

    I have to admit that I was an absolute Zenith hater going into TI2 – after day 1 I was reveling in their losses; Somehow I ended up on this blog, and have been reading it since. The brilliant writing, inner perspective of the team workings, and attitude portrayed, have all impressed me to no end. Suddenly I find myself being a Zenith fan all the way from South Africa, and am looking forward to seeing more of the teams exploits every day! Go ZENITH!

  5. Miku^Miku

    Awesome blog! It’s always nice to see players in a more relaxed setting just enjoying themselves and hanging out with other pro players. Keep it up, Zenith fighting!

  6. ArchDC

    Cool blog. What were they playing? 5 10 one-hand between 8 players? Then subsequently 5 10 two hands one-on-one 4 a side? Looks like it, typical Chinese drinking game. =)
    Go Orange! Go Zenith! For MY/SG and SEA!

  7. Sadiq

    ohh looks like xFreedom is quite the ladies man ?? 😀
    Anyway, I come to this blog EVERYDAY. I love the writing and the pics make it even better 🙂

  8. Judy

    Hi there, i read your blog from time to time and i own a similar one and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam responses?
    If so how do you protect against it, any plugin or
    anything you can advise? I get so much lately it’s driving me insane so any assistance is very much appreciated.

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