Riyadh Masters 2023 play-in stage predictions

Riyadh Masters 2023 is a Dota 2 event of tremendous importance. The community may not feel it because the... Radu M. | 17. July 2023

Riyadh Masters 2023 is a Dota 2 event of tremendous importance. The community may not feel it because the competition doesn’t have a long history like TI. But the teams have surely prepared for it intensely. With $15 million in prize money, this could easily be the highest-paying tournament of the season.

Eight of the 20 participants are currently waiting in the group stage. The other 12 will need to start the race in the play-in stage. Luckily for them, only four will get eliminated at the end of this stage, so it’s relatively easy to advance.

Compare this system to the group stage of many CS:GO events, where you have eight teams fighting for just three playoffs spots.

The play-in stage of Riyadh Masters 2023 is scheduled to start on July 19 and it will only last for two days. That’s because of the format. On day 1, a total of 24 best-of-two matches will be played. With six teams per group, each team needs to compete in just five matches.

The top two teams in each group advance to the group stage. The bottom four get to play one last match that will decide their fate in what is called the Decider. Here, each team in group A is seeded against a team from group B. Needless to say, the better teams are paired with weaker ones. Every elimination match is a best-of-three series.

Group A

Group A of Riyadh Masters’ play-in stage features these six teams:

  • Entity
  • Execration
  • Team Aster
  • Team Liquid
  • TSM
  • Virtus.pro

If everything goes according to plan, Team Liquid and Team Aster will be the winners. The remaining four teams have little hope against their group B opponents, because that group is much tougher than this one. Therefore, everyone will try to secure one of the top two spots and avoid the Decider.

Group B

Here are the six teams that will compete in group B:

  • 9Pandas
  • Beastcoast
  • OG
  • Quest Esports
  • Team Secret
  • Xtreme Gaming

In theory, the weakest teams in this group are Secret and OG. But we need to keep in mind that OG will play with Sebastien “Ceb” Debs as their position 4, which could lead to much better results. Ceb is no longer the player he used to be, but he’s still an exceptional captain and his input will be very valuable.

The strongest teams in this group are Quest Esports and either Xtreme Gaming or 9Pandas.

Header: Saudi Esports Federation