Several reliable sources have all but confirmed that The International 5 winner and former Evil Geniuses player Saahil ‘UNiVeRsE‘ Arora is set to join the Fnatic Dota 2 roster. If the rumors are indeed true, then Fnatic is also set to bid farewell to their longtime player Khoo ‘Ohaiyo‘ Chong Xin.
A Sudden and Unexpected Roster Change
Dimitri ‘GodBlessMali‘ Vallete first teased the possible incoming roster change in a series of tweets earlier today. What soon followed were a myriad of status updates and tweets from various sources, including Mineski’s offlaner Daryl ‘iceiceice‘ Koh, who took to Twitter after hearing news of the sad fate of his close friend.
— iceiceice (@iceiceicedota) January 12, 2018
Ohaiyo is the longest serving member of the Fnatic Dota 2 roster. He has played with the team since they first made the transition to Southeast Asia back in June of 2015.
After a last-place finish at the biggest Dota 2 event of the year, the organisation saw fit to change their Fnatic Dota 2 roster. They had called over reinforcements from the west, namely the polarizing Jacky ‘EternalEnVy‘ Mao. However, after a rather uneventful start to the season, Fnatic decided to change their roster once again; they brought in Abed Azel ‘Abed‘ Yusop to man their middle lane and welcomed back their former support player Adam Erwann Shah ‘343‘ bin Akhtar Hussein to coach the team.
WE DID IT! It's time for a lie down after that one. 😱 GG, @TNCProTeam.
See you at Poland's first ever major! 🇵🇱 https://t.co/hLK6mbsJHL
— FNATIC (@FNATIC) January 12, 2018
All seemed good after the recent roster change; Fnatic had started to secure Qualifier spots in Southeast Asia and even placed 2nd at the recently-concluded The Summit 8 Minor. Fnatic were even fresh off of securing a spot at the ESL One Katowice Major when the rumors started popping up.
For this to happen to Ohaiyo so suddenly makes it feel like there’s much more to this roster change than meets the eye.
What Will Universe Bring to the Fnatic Dota 2 Roster?
End of an era: @UniverseDota leaves @EvilGeniuses as one of only 8 players to compete in 1000 pro #Dota2 games with a single franchise. His 63.05% win rate with the team (669-392) is surpassed only by s4 (556-322 with [A]) and Fenrir (566-317 with VG). https://t.co/bXUwUf4SV5
— Nahaz (@NahazDota) December 20, 2017
UNiVeRsE is a veteran of the Dota 2 scene who has appeared in each of the seven The International tournaments. The TI5 winner brings a wealth of experience to a Fnatic Dota 2 team that feels like one big win away from a breakthrough.
Stylistically, the 28-year-old should fit right in with the rest of the roster, even if his playstyle is the exact opposite of Ohaiyo’s. Though both are phenomenal offlaners with proven track records, UNiVeRsE’s style of play is more reserved. He tends to focus more on farming before making plays for his team. Meanwhile, Ohaiyo is unpredictable. He prefers to roam and create space for his team, spending very little of his time farming.
Reddit right now. pic.twitter.com/ynwoVbIv2Z
— Beyond the Summit (@BeyondTheSummit) January 12, 2018
Fnatic have yet to officially confirm the rumors. However, this roster change feels like a sure thing already. Especially after hawk-eyed fans spotted UNiVeRsE playing on his smurf account playing in Southeast Asia’s servers.
After nearly 24 hours after the rumors initially broke out, Fnatic have officially confirmed that the roster shuffle were indeed true.
In a post titled, “We Bid Farewell to Ohaiyo and Welcome UNiVeRsE”, the international, multi-title organization said goodbye to the most tenured member of the Fnatic Dota 2 roster while also welcoming their latest member.
DOTA | Today we welcome @UniverseDota as our new Offlaner!
— FNATIC (@FNATIC) January 13, 2018
Fnatic’s newest lineup will make their official LAN debut at the ESL One Genting Minor on January 23-28.
What do you think of UNiVeRsE’s fit in Fnatic’s lineup? Do you think he’ll be the key to helping Fnatic topple Mineski’s dominance of SEA this 2017-18 season? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments down below.