Order of Day 3’s activities – boot camp, watch Wild Card match, player’s dinner, REST FOR BIG DAY TOMORROW.
It was an early breakfast for Zenith today. Everyone was awake by 6am and having breakfast by 7. Most of the team elected to munch on snacks/fruits in the hotel rooms but iceiceice decided to gorge on bacon and eggs. Since it was the infinitely the better choice (compared to cup noodles), I decided to follow him there.
We had our breakfast with Orange.Neolution and Invasion MUFC. Asian solidarity? Actually it was probably 20% of that, 80% because everyone was still similarly jet lagged. Sleeping at 8pm, waking up at 5am… you get the picture.
Westin had quite a spread for breakfast. Plenty of fruits, a mountain of bacon, a pile of scrambled eggs, a pot of mashed potato. Ars-Art is clearly a fruit person and KyxY likes his eggs scrambled.
Being the responsible team captain, iceiceice made his rounds. We found a disobedient xy who went back to sleep. Wake up, sleepyhead! Boot camp starts in 15 minutes.
Boot camp started at 9am. It was a little rushed today because all teams had only 2 hours. Our opponents for today? The boys from Fnatic! We tried to squeeze in three games but were booted out of the room in the middle of the third to make way for DK. Oops…
Because we had to make way for DK, we headed off for lunch after a short post-match discussion. In a nutshell, they were pretty satisfied with the way they were playing but there was room for improvement for sure. Ironing out the kinks and preventing any unnecessary mistakes in gameplay. After the brief pow-wow, pizza! At another of Zenith’s regular joints – Pagliacci Pizza.
For the first time this week, it started to rain in Bellevue. (Ahh the heavens cry for Quantic.) We trudged back to the hotel to catch the Wild Card match in the lobby, together with everyone else. When we got there it was already packed. But it was quite clear that there was a European camp and an Asian camp. The Russians were happily leading in friendly banter and the Chinese were exceptionally enthusiastic in their reply.
Congratulations to Rattlesnake for a shot at the top prize of USD1.3 million!
Bonus feature! If you thought the Zenith hotel rooms were cool, wait till you see the presidential suite reserved for iG, last year’s champions. Thanks to ChuaN for giving us the grand tour (grand because it lasted a grand total of five minutes). 😀
Last activity of the day was the players’ dinner that Valve kindly hosted for us at a nifty restaurant called El Gaucho. It was a 10-minute walk away from the Westin – and it was a route familiar to all who attended TI2. We walked to the Microsoft building, which was right beside the Valve office, and to the restaurant/bar located at the ground floor of the Microsoft building.
It was a glitzy affair. Valve booked the entire restaurant and closed it off for our exclusive use. It had two levels of dining area, an alfresco dining area plus a fully-decked out bar. Although Zenith’s patronage at the bar on this occasion was limited by the players’ own discipline – we are so not going to wake up and play against mousesports with a hangover. :p
Each team was assigned an individual table but everyone was walking about and mingling with each other. The 1v1 player booths were in a balcony on the second storey overlooking the main dining area. Valve also set up two big screens for everyone present to follow the 1v1 matches.
The DotA 2 team at Valve even went to the effort of creating these brews. Many people would die happy right now. Wait, no. Not when there’s a million bucks up for grabs. Not…. yet.
And how could I end this blog post without a picture of iceiceice going up 1v1 against the Son of Magnus…. using Magnus. The hero in the second mirror match was Axe. I shall not spoil the results for fans who have not watched… it’s an interesting series.
Right about now is when I head to bed because I am ABSOLUTELY KNACKERED. Real hectic day tomorrow but I promise more updates – pictures and videos from Team Zenith! But for now, pardon any spelling or grammatical errors.