Natus Vincere put up one heck of a fight in their home country, but one of the hottest teams since the Chinese shuffle, Vici Gaming Reborn, emerged victorious after a lengthy and action packed 3-1 series that saw them win the tournament.
The Na`Vi snowball got underway early in the first game, but Vici Gaming Reborn countered it with strong teamfighting of their own which made for a very back and forth game. There were a few missed Chronospheres and other errant spells here and there, but the final minutes made it one of the most exciting games of the tournament.
Na`Vi took the series lead and VG.R didn't look happy about it, looking frustrated with the game.
VG.R pulled themselves together as Game 2 began. The Chinese squad went blow for blow with Na`Vi in the early game, matching the CIS squad's aggression.
A pick off on Dendi's Invoker around the 39 minute mark led to two downed sets of barracks in Na`Vi's base, and after picking up an Aegis for Mikasa's Windranger, VG.R went for the finishing blow.
With the series tied up at 1-1, things were very even early on but Game 3 saw VG.R slowly pull ahead with favorable trades and Track gold thanks to fy's masterful Bounty Hunter play. As the game reached the 40 minute mark, Na`Vi's play was starting to look messy. After a great Sonic Wave from Mikasa and a full five-man wipe, they called GG.
In Game 4, Na`Vi looked like they were on the ropes after VG.R took total map control with an Aghanim's Scepter and Gem of True Sight on Yang's Night Stalker. Na`Vi wiped VG.R as they threatened high ground in the bottom lane and suddenly things were much more even.
Na`Vi went for a flashy play to try and finish the game, but it went horribly wrong. Ditya Ra had an Aegis on his Gyrocopter, so he bought a Divine Rapier and the high ground push began. VG.R Nether Swapped and kited Gyro, took down the Aegis, didn't let him use Satanic to heal and took the Rapier for END's Juggernaut.
A long range swap from ddc's Vengeful Spirit took out Ditya Ra in front of Na`Vi's base at the 54 minute mark, no buy back available. Na`Vi threw everything they had into a defense but VG.R took Mega creeps and the Tier 4 towers before Gyro even re-spawned.
Not willing to give up, Na`Vi took a few kills as VG.R backed out, but they were defending Mega creeps having taken no Tier 3 towers of their own. VG.R went for a final Roshan before smoking into NaVi's base. A swap on Dendi was the beginning of the end and before long Na`Vi had called GG.
With that, Vici Gaming Reborn took victory in the first StarLadder i-League Invitational.
Annabelle "Abelle" Fischer is a writer for theScore esports with a love for Dota 2, birds and cheese. You can follow her on Twitter.