As one of the most aggressive carry players out there, Natus Vincere’s Alexander “XBOCT” Dashkevich has been known to single-handedly win or lose games for his team. He started his professional career playing DotA in 2009 and joined Na’Vi a year later. Natus Vincere is the only team Alexander has been on in his entire Dota 2 career. That is an impressive accomplishment in itself and speaks volumes about Alexander’s faithfulness and tenacity.
Never has the Russian language sounded sweeter than when Alexander “XBOCT” Dashkevich’s mother, Natalia, called him “malen’kiy Sasha” (little boy Sasha) in his TI5 player profile. She characterizes him as a “cute, wonderful boy, naturally gifted with a calculated mind”.
Vivacious and humorous, XBOCT is the very life and soul of Natus Vincere.
“There are millions of funny memories and stories about Sasha. He’ll go YOLO and make the team even more crazy. That’s really important to have in a teammate. (…) He’ll scream at the enemy, he’ll say something really funny that other people are going to start laughing at. He’s my bro, so whatever. I know his character, I know how he will act in situations – in the game and outside of the game, making people around him happier,” Danil “Dendi” Ishutin – Alexander’s long-time comrade and friend – testifies.
Dendi is not the only one feeling this way. XBOCT’s girlfriend, Anastasiia Bondarenko, talks about “the energy of his ambitions and the power of his personality”.
Soon after Natus Vincere was put together, they were invited to the first International, in 2011, and managed to seize the first ever TI championship title. XBOCT recalls sending his mother a text message, to let her know he won the coveted Aegis trophy and the biggest prize money ever awarded to a Dota team at that time.
I sent my mom a text message. Something like: ‘Hey, I won 200,000 dollars!’
Running full steam ahead, Na’Vi plowed through The International 2 to the grand finals once again, this time taking the runners-up slot behind Invictus Gaming. Then, for a third year in a row, at The International 3, they ran through their competition and headed into the grand finals once more.
The next season, a sub-par performance at StarLadder would be the start of a bad streak of similar results leading up to, and including, The International 4, where the team took a disappointing eighth place.
Everything went wrong and we didn’t want to play together. I tried to hide it as much as possible. Some days we were fine, but some days it wasn’t good. We all understood that something was wrong.
Due to their numerous recent roster changes and inconsistent performances, Na’Vi did not receive a direct invite to The International 5. Instead, they were invited to compete in the European qualifiers, where they displayed much of their original skill, as they staged an epic comeback in the group stages. They eventually won the qualifiers and earned their spot at TI5.
It feels almost unreal to hear Alexander “XBOCT” Dashkevich refer to his team – champions and second-time runners-up at The International – as one of TI5’s underdogs.
We feel like we are underdogs, but we feel good about that and we’re gonna fight till the end.
Watch Alexander “XBOCT” Dashkevich’s TI5 player profile:
Read an in-depth profile about Natus Vincere – Na’Vi in better shape, look to make comeback at TI5