The first three regions to undergo the TI9 closed qualifiers were the SEA, CIS and South American regions. They were held between July 7 - 10 and saw some high octane action to claim the sole spot given to each region.
Each closed qualifier saw eight teams pitted in a group and after the round robin stage, the top 4 teams advanced to the playoffs with double elimination.
With the two most dominant SEA teams, Fnatic and TNC, securing a direct invite, the closed qualifiers saw six of the eight teams coming from the open qualifiers.
The group stage saw some surprises with BOOM ID getting eliminated and Team Jinesbrus, a stack of 3 players from the ex MVP and Gunnar, going to the playoffs as the first seed.
Once the playoffs started, it was Mineski who cruised through to claim their spot at the TI after beating Team Jinesbrus 3-2 in the finals.
Mineski will look to perform well in the TI after having a very damp season and will look to do better than their SEA rivals who managed to snag direct invites.
Most analysts and fans had assumed that Gambit would take the spot after missing out on the direct invite by few points and after their stellar performance at the EPICENTER Major.
But the CIS region showed why it is so highly rated as Gambit were eliminated in the group stage which was dominated by Vega Squadron who went to the playoffs with a flawless 7-0 win loss record.
But the more well established teams stepped up to the fore and saw NAVi take the spot after going through the lower brackets and winning over Winstrike 3-0 in the Grand Finals. This will be NAVi's first TI without their star player Dendi and they will look to prove a point to the world that they back.
South America recap
This was the only region which did not have a team to get a direct invite. There was some intense action for the chance to represent the region after the exit of Chaos.
While many people expected a dark horse to appear, there was no such story as the established teams and veterans comfortably made it through to the playoffs with Team Infamous clean sweeping Pain Gaming 3-0 to book their ticket to Shanghai.
The last three regions to conduct the qualifiers will be China, Europe and North America, held between July 11 to 14.
The TI will be the first to be held in China and will be conducted in the Mercedes-Benz Arena in Shanghai. The tournament will be held from 15-24 August with a prizepool of more than $26.5 million.Published 11 Jul 2019, 08:52 IST