The Lima Major 2023 has finally come to an end and has seen North American team Gaimin Gladiators lifting the first Dota 2 trophy of the year.
Lima Major 2023 winner
Gaimin Gladiators emerged victorious through a decisive 3-0 win over Team Liquid in the Grand Final, which took place at 20:40 GMT on March 5. It marked the end of a perfect run for Gaimin Gladiators, who had dominated the tournament ever since it began on February 22.
Despite Team Liquid putting up a solid defence in game one, the match ultimately proved to be a somewhat one-sided affair, with Gaimin Gladiators closing out game two in just 21 minutes. Team Liquid pushed hard in game three, but ultimately they proved unable to get their footing in the face of Gaimin's onslaught.
Expectations were already running high for Gaimin Gladiators at Lima, as they started the Major with a second-place result at the WEU DPC Tour, coming in just behind Team Liquid. They quickly lived up to those expectations through a fantastic performance through the Group Stage, ending as the highest-seeded team in Group A, with a record of four wins, three draws, and one loss.
And Gaimin didn't slow down at all once they reached the Playoffs, completing a perfect win-streak across the Upper Bracket, defeating both Team Aster and Entity with 2-0 victories, before handing Team Liquid two back-to-back defeats in the Upper Bracket Final and Grand Final.
Of course, the same could be said for Team Liquid too - who not only claimed first place at the end of the WEU DPC Tour, but delighted fans with an incredible Group Stage record of six wins, two draws and zero losses. Alongside Gaimin Gladiators, Liquid were one of the clear favourites throughout the Major, and their seemingly inevitable showdown was highly anticipated from the start.
And while Team Liquid had a similarly strong run through the Playoffs, claiming 2-0 victories over both Talon Esports and Shopify Rebellion - but their win streak hit a snag just before their Upper Bracket Final match against Gaimin Gladiators.
Liquid's hopes of lifting the Lima trophy were put into doubt after their support player Samuel "Boxi" Svahn was forced to step down from the Major due to a medical emergency. Boxi's spot on the team was filled instead by Mathis "Jabbz" Friesel.
Team Liquid coach William "Blitz" Lee revealed the situation on Twitter, adding that "I hope that the community understands that Boxis health is most important to us, and to not speculate and simply send him love and support."
Despite the behind-the-scenes struggles for Team Liquid, Gaimin Gladiators' victory marks the end of a fantastic Major - the first-ever to take place on South American soil. The focus now moves on to the Spring Tour, with the Division 1 Regional League due to run from March 13 to April 2.
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