With the end in sight, Day 3 of the Dota 2 Kiev Major main event saw the remaining teams fighting for the four semifinals slots, with a victory guaranteeing $250,000 and a chance at a direct invitation to The International 2017. After a Day 2 full of surprises and upsets, Day 3 was back to business as usual, with all of the favored teams advancing.
Invictus Gaming vs. Team Liquid
After regaining its composure on Day 2, Team Liquid hoped to build on its momentum by toppling a Dota 2 titan. Team Liquid was treated to a rude awakening as Invictus Gaming took a quick Game 1 victory. Refusing to go quietly, Team Liquid put on a show as off-laner Ivan "MinD_ContRoL" Ivanov led his team to an impressive victory over Invictus Gaming despite the lineup featuring the legendary Xu "BurNIng" Zhilei Anti-Mage. Liquid never got off the ground in Game 3, though, struggling from start to finish as Invictus Gaming avoided an upset.
OG vs. Team Faceless
After cruel fate pitted Team Faceless and TNC Pro Team against each other on the first day of competition, the Southeast Asia region's woes were amplified as Team Faceless squared off against the Master of the Majors, OG. Team Faceless claimed victory at a blistering pace in Game 1 behind mid-laner Anucha "JabZ' Jirawong's un-killable Morphling. Not to be outdone, OG turned the tables on Team Faceless in the next two games led by its own mid-laner, Anathan "Ana" Pham. Ana had 37 kills and only three deaths over the final two games as OG kept its hopes of a fourth Major victory alive.
Virtus.pro vs. Vici Gaming J
Carrying the hopes of Kiev on its shoulders, Virtus.pro emerged victorious over Vici Gaming J in an exciting best-of-three series. VGJ went up first in a tight Game 1 that struck fear into the heart of the crowd, as Vitrus.pro was defeated after having drafted a lineup stocked with comfort picks. After a quick regroup, Virtus.pro came roaring to life and thrashed VGJ in a sub 30-minute rout.
In the decisive Game 3, Virtus.pro found itself in trouble early, but off-laner Pavel "9pasha" Khvastunov turned losing fights into full team wipes in favor of Virtus.pro time and time again. Given the breathing room it needed, Virtus.pro goaded VGJ into an overly aggressive style of play, and the Chinese underdogs lost any chance of victory.
Evil Geniuses vs. SG e-sports
After its surprise upset of Team Secret on Day 2, SG e-sports found itself face to face with its regional sparring partner, Evil Geniuses. Having won the hearts of the crowd and the analysts alike, SG e-sports had many predicting another upset in favor of the Brazilian squad.
Evil Geniuses proved victorious in a grueling hour-long Game 1 that it struggled to close out despite always holding the lead. With fatigue beginning to set in, Evil Geniuses was overzealous in its attempts to end the series quickly in Game 2. Breakdowns in communication and several misplays by Evil Geniuses, and the incredible Enigma plays of Otavio "tavo" Gabriel, allowed SG e-sports to even the series.
Game 3 was an all-out, back-and-forth brawl with five lead changes, massive gold swings and no clear victor until the very end. Spurned by the previous loss, Evil Geniuses did its best to mimic Virtus.pro's earlier performance and turned fights on their heads. Huge teamfight spells and precision from Evil Geniuses helped it hang on to advance to the semifinals.