Sumail and Team Secret have no expectations in long road to The International 11


Syed Sumail ‘Sumail’ Hassan might be the king of Dota 2, but he’s got modest expectations for Team Secret, admitting they’ve got none and just want to play and see what happens as the long road to The International 11 begins.

After a disappointing run with OG at The International 10 that saw the roster disband and go their separate ways, Sumail joined Team Secret to have another crack at lifting the Aegis under Puppey’s leadership.

He’s been thrown into plenty of dynamic squads and forced to adapt to numerous leadership styles. Despite being on some of the game’s most decorated rosters — namely Evil Geniuses, OG, and Team Secret — he has had to deal with a barrage of voices.

PPD, Cr1t, Fly, and N0tail — all of these names have different leadership styles.

sumail-dota-2-interview-team-secretTeam Secret
Sumail moved from OG to Team Secret in November 2021.

PPD’s strength was his steadfast leadership and drafting ability. Fly was good at these things too. However, his biggest asset was encouraging players to maintain healthy lifestyles throughout the season.

N0tail ticked those boxes as well, but one thing he did better than the rest was making it all about the team. Of course, that wouldn’t have been possible without Ceb, who played a big role in leading the team, too.

Now, he’s playing under Puppey, who is one of the most prolific captains in Dota 2’s history. Sumail told Dexerto the biggest difference in Puppey’s leadership style is how he encourages individual players to shine.

“There are differences with the team’s leadership,” he said. “It’s focused more on how the individual is doing, whereas with OG, it was about the team.”

Time will tell which approach brings out the best in Sumail.

Sumail and OG fell short of the mark at TI 10 after losing to eventual winners Team Spirit.

Sumail’s stint with Secret has started reasonably well. They barely missed out on qualifying for the DPC Regional Finals. However, it hasn’t weighed them down heading into the GAMERS GALAXY: Invitational Series Dubai 2022.

“Our team is reborn,” he said about it being the perfect platform for a fresh start. As for what their goal in the tournament is, he revealed the team has no expectations. “We just want to play Dota and see what happens!”

It also coincides with the release of a new patch, which means it’s a fresh start for everyone else, too. Some heroes and items were nerfed while others were buffed. However, Sumail doesn’t think it’ll change the meta much.

“I think the mid heroes are similar, meta-wise. Some are a bit worse and a bit better, but I don’t think it’s changed too much.”

Sumail is keen for a fresh start with Team Secret, revealing the team has no expectations.

He was also disappointed with the lack of significant changes in the patch and revealed two things he wanted to see: “I would’ve liked to have had water runes removed and some map changes, but neither of those happened.”

In fact, he thinks the addition of water runes, among other things, have made the mid-lane less enjoyable. The role has changed for sure, maybe for the worse! I think it used to be a bit better than it is now.”

However, as the long run to TI now awaits the King of the Mid Lane, he’s hoping he can add one more Aegis into his cabinet alongside the slightly dusty one following his TI5 win in 2015 with Evil Geniuses.