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14 Players who can’t compete in the Singapore Major because of COVID-19

Singapore Major, COVID-19, Players can't play

The Singapore Major marks the return of competitive LANs in Dota 2. However, it’s still not a complete return to normal. For example, the Singapore Major will still not have a live audience in-stadium. Meanwhile, players and sometimes entire teams don’t always get to play in tournaments they qualified for or invited in. Most of the time, the issue revolves around players’ visa requirements. However, the COVID-19 pandemic added an additional hurdle for players competing from abroad. In the Singapore Major, COVID-19 rears its ugly head, preventing a couple of players from competing because of health reasons. Here is a list of affected players who can’t compete in the Singapore Major because of COVID-19.

NEON ESPORTS – NATSUMI CATCHES COVID-19

Neon Esports’ carry John Anthony “Natsumi” Vargas became unfit to travel for catching the coronavirus, the organization announced last Sunday. He will be replaced by Rafael “Rappy” Palo, who will play as the team’s support. Meanwhile, team captain Rolen Andrei Gabriel “skem” Ong moves from the support position to carry for the tournament. Natsumi is considered to be one of the best carries in SEA, so his absence will have a big effect on the tournament. Skem has had success in the past as a carry, too, so it won’t be that big of an adjustment for the team captain.

  1. Rolen Andrei Gabriel “skem” Ong
  2. Erin Jasper “Yopaj” Ferrer
  3. Prieme Ejay “PlayHard” Banquil
  4. Rafael “Rapy” Sicat Palo
  5. Jaunuel “Jaunuel” Arcilla

NATUS VINCERE – ALWAYSWANNAFLY AND ICEBERG CATCHES COVID, THE REST MET TRAVEL ISSUES

Andrii “ALWAYSWANNAFLY” Bondarenko and Bogdan”Iceberg” Vasilenko also caught the coronavirus, preventing them from traveling to Singapore.  The two players were to be replaced by CIS prodigy Roman “RAMZES666” Kushnarev and by the team’s veteran coach Andrey “Mag” Chipenko, the team announced on Saturday. However, as the rest of the team were traveling to Singapore, the team’s flight experienced technical difficulties, preventing them from participating in the tournament. Meanwhile, RAMZES666 arrived safely in Singapore, now currently eligible to play with any team who’ll take him in, if any.

QUINCY CREW REPLACES MSS WITH MILAN

Jack “KBBQ” Chen, Quincy Crew’s manager, announced on Twitter early Tuesday that MiLAN will replace MSS. MiLAN is notable for being the only player who has ever qualified for The International at least twice to never reach the main stage. He’s clearly talented and is part of the 10,000 MMR club. However, MSS will still be missed by his teammates. Quincy Crew had a consistent domination streak in North America with their roster throughout last year. We’ll see how much this sudden change in their lineup will affect their chances in the Singapore Major.

  1. Yawar “YawaR” Hassan
  2. Quinn “Quinn” Callahan
  3. Rodrigo “Lelis” Santos
  4. Milan “MiLAN” Kozomara
  5. Avery “SVG” Silverman

TEAM NIGMA LOSES ITS MIND_CONTROL; RMN- TO STAND-IN

One of the most recent teams to announce a change in their roster for the Singapore Major is Team Nigma. The one-time The International champions will be losing their trusty offlaner, Ivan Borislavov “MinD_ContRoL” Ivanov. Their coach Roman “rmN-” Paley will stand-in. Just like Na’vi’s Mag, this will be the first time rmN- will be competing as a player ever since shifting to the coach position in 2018. Losing a former The International champion from your roster is an incomparable, but not insurmountable loss. We’ll see how Team Nigma copes with this roster change, fighting all the way from the Wild Card Stage of the Singapore Major.

  1. Amer “Miracle-” Al-Barkawi
  2. Aliwi “w33” Omar
  3. Roman “rmN-” Paley
  4. Maroun “GH” Merhej
  5. Kuro “KuroKy” Salehi Takhasomi

T1 LOSES CAPTAIN KUKU, FOREV RETURNS TO FILL THE VOID

This Wednesday, another player caught a “health problem” right before the Singapore Major. T1 didn’t specify if it’s COVID-19 related, and it is possible that the health problem is caused by something else. Basing on one of Kuku’s posts on Facebook, though, it seems likely that the offlaner also caught the virus. We’ve reached out to them to confirm the matter. But one thing is for sure – Carlo “Kuku” Palad will not be able to compete in the Singapore Major. Lee “Forev” Sang-don, himself a former member of T1, will be standing in for the team in the meantime. Losing your captain during your first Major as a team will come as a major blow, but we’re hopeful that T1 will be able to adapt to the times and still play competitively in the Wild Card Stage.

  1. Nuengnara “23savage” Teeramahanon
  2. Karl “Karl” Jayme
  3. Lee “Forev” Sang-don
  4. Kenny “Xepher” Deo
  5. Matthew “Whitemon” Filemon

THE WHOLE TEAM OF BEASTCOAST WON’T COMPETE IN THE SINGAPORE MAJOR

Despite testing negative for the coronavirus, the whole team of beastcoast will no longer be able to compete for the Major. Following WHO protocols, beastcoast had to put their whole team in quarantine after being exposed to the virus. With them out of the picture, we don’t know yet how the Singapore Major will proceed. There might not be enough time to find a replacement team, so it’s also possible that we’ll push through with one less Playoffs-seeded team.

IN SUMMARY: SIX TEAMS, FOURTEEN PLAYERS AFFECTED BY HEALTH ISSUES IN THE SINGAPORE MAJOR

With the Singapore Major starting this weekend, we do hope that all remaining players can remain healthy throughout the tournament. We don’t want anyone else suddenly testing positive within the bubble. The past week has given us a lot of surprises, with two teams dropping out completely. COVID-19 has already prevented five players from four teams from competing. These changes have drastic effects on the landscape of the competitive scene, making our Singapore Major Power Rankings inaccurate at this point.