OG have just formally announced that they’re going to pick up professional Russian Dota 2 player, Igor “iLTW“ Filatov, as their stand-in for the foreseeable future.
The news comes just a day after OG bid farewell to Pers Anders Olsson ‘Pajkatt‘ Lille, who had spent two months on the roster prior to his release.
“We’re glad to welcome Igor ‘iLTW‘ Filatov as our new standin.” OG said in their statement.
iLTW last played for the Russia-based organization, ESPADA. The team initially showed promise when they first formed back in May of 2018. In fact, they went on to win their first tournament together as a team at the Taurora Invitational online tournament. They then went on to take second place at the CIS Regional Qualifiers for The International 2018. However, their success did not carry over to the next season. Despite playing with the same roster, ESPADA would fail to qualify for any notable LAN tournament, nor did they place high in any of the tournaments they played in.
iLTW also played as a stand-in for OG early on in the European Regional Qualifiers for the Chongqing Major. In 4 games with the reigning champions, iLTW posted an average KDA of 7.83 with a 716 GPM and 663 XPM as OG’s hard carry, helping guide the reigning champions to a 3-1 record in his short stint.
What Does iLTW Bring to the Table for OG?
Traditionally, OG has always had more success when playing around a young and explosive core player. First, there was Amer ‘Miracle-‘ Al-Barkawi, who OG won two Majors with. He was followed by Anathan ‘ana‘ Pham, who also helped OG win two more Majors, as well as a TI, along with Topias ‘Topson‘ Taavitsaine.
iLTW could be next.
The solo middle player has long been regarded as one of the most mechanically skilled players to hail out of the CIS region. At 19-year-olds, he is also young enough to fit OG’s usual MO.
While iLTW has yet to truly breakout as an individual talent, he has shown flashes of his potential many times throughout the years. In fact, he was able to prove his place on Team Russia when they won WESG 2017 back in March 2018. Although Team Russia, composed of Virtus.Pro members sans Vladimir ‘No[o]ne‘ Minenko, usually played more around Roman ‘RAMZES666‘ Kushnarev, the 19-year-old never really looked out of place. In 16 games, iLTW did his best impression of No[o]ne and posted a 6.33 average KDA, which was second on Team Russia, and among the highest across the entire tournament.
Having said that, the question now is, how long is this going to last? Is the set-up more of a tryout that could potentially lead to a permanent position? Or are OG already eyeing a permanent replacement?
Either way, with only a few days to go before the Bucharest Minor, we’ll know soon enough just how well OG are going to play with iLTW standing in.