Redeye: 'Incredible honour' to host The International as TI8 talent is announced

It doesn’t get much bigger than The International when it comes to esports, or sports generally. The biggest prize pool, the largest audience, and all run by the greatest developer esports has, Valve. This year, the festivities take place in Canada, and Luckbox Ambassador Paul ‘Redeye’ Chaloner is going the be the ringleader, master of ceremonies, or main desk host, to give it the Latin name.

Obviously everyone here is delighted for Redeye, and we caught up with the man himself to see how the news is settling in. There are few bigger compliments a host can receive than the main TI gig, and for a man who has contributed so much to the Dota2 community over the course of his career, it means that much more to be invited back to the event he hosted in 2015 and 2016.

What does it mean to you to be named as a host of TI?

It's an incredible honour to be asked to host the richest esports event in the world and after missing out last year and putting in a lot of work on my hosting, my game knowledge and even more preparation throughout the season, it's very gratifying to find that paid off.

I'm grateful to Valve for giving me the opportunity to host my third TI.

I think you've said previously that TI6 was your favourite event to work - what makes TI so special?

TI is special, end of story. It's special for the fans who attend, those who watch it online, the players, the managers, the teams, the production staff and of course the talent and everyone in between all those.

It's hard to pinpoint exactly why, I think it’s a mixture of things, the size of the event, the fact it’s the end of the Dota season where a year of your life has been spent working hard, praying and hoping you get to go and the ultimate fight for the Aegis.

The money is great for players, of course, but ask most of them and it’s about the glory, proving you are the best in the world when it most matters and making history.

What are you looking forward to most about it?

Tough question! EVERYTHING!

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Alongside Redeye will be three other main hosts, namely Alex ‘Machine’ Richardson, Jorien ‘Sheever’ van der Heijden and William ‘Chobra’ Cho, as well as a swathe of top tier commentators, content creators and analysts set to work the event. Owen ‘ODPixel’ Davies and Tobi ‘Tobiwan’ Dawson are among the commentators invited to Canada, while Jake ‘SirActionSlacks’ Kanner and Ted ‘Pyrion Flax’ Forsyth will be providing extra content to supplement the gameplay.

Among the English language analysts you can also find some big names, with exs-Mad Lads man Troels 'syndereN' Lyngholt NielsenOn alongside the likes of Henrik 'AdmiralBulldog' Ahnbergthe and William 'Blitz' Lee. One the Russian stream, Ivan ‘Faker’ Demkin and Dmitry ‘CrystalMay’ Korchevinin will share main hosting duties, with Alexander 'XBOCT' Dashkevich among the analysts, while the Chinese viewers can enjoy the dulcet tones of Du ‘78’ Junnan and Zhang ‘BBC’ Hongsheng.

The main event begins on the 20th of August, with the Group Stages due to take place from the 15th to the 18th of the month. The final six days will see sixteen of the world’s best teams battle it out for the lions share of the $20m+ prize pool, with all but the first lower bracket game being at least a best of three affair to ensure the best teams progress at every opportunity.