Two time TI-winner Anathan “ana” Pham has probably the most interesting yearly Dota 2 routine compared to other pros. Instead of grinding through the Dota Pro Circuit through a competitive year, the legendary OG player only returns to pro play as The International draws near, and that might be the case again in 2023.
The beloved carry player was recently spotted practicing offlane heroes in his ranked matches, averaging an impressive 61.8 percent win rate since May 21.
Ana’s return was also brought to Max “qojqva” Bröcker’s attention during a livestream, in which he brushed it off, saying ana could be going online just to play Auto Chess. But when he went over ana’s recent matches, qojqva was impressed by the number of games that the two-timer played so far.
While ana’s timely return may not have surprised his dedicated fans, the fact that he was playing in the offlane instead of the carry role might have done the trick. Ana has been honing his skills with popular offlane heroes like Magnus, who has been highly contested in the summer season of the DPC.
In the 2022 season, ana made a last-minute return to Dota 2 and joined T1 in preparation for The International 11 qualifiers alongside Topias “Topson” Taavitsainen. We’re still a few months away from the next TI, so ana’s newfound love for the offlane could be a sign of an earlier return at the Bali Major.
Multiple offlaners are looking at a difficult visa process ahead of the Bali Major, located in Indonesia. Neta “33” Shapira of Tundra Esports and Dmitry “DM” Dorokhin of OG might miss out on the event, and one of these speculated teams may have contacted ana in case one of their players were unable to travel to LAN.