T1 signs Gabbi as carry, quashes ana comeback rumors

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After weeks of rumors, T1 has finally announced the signing of star carry Kim “Gabbi” Villafuerte.

Following an abundance of rumors, T1’s safelane carry vacancy has finally been filled. Dota 2 veteran Gabbi is the squad’s newest late-game threat. The new squad will debut at the Southeast Asia regional finals starting February 11. While this is great news for Gabbi fans, those who prefer Anathan “ana” Pham may be disappointed to learn that he did not fill the position. This doesn’t mean that ana won’t make a comeback, just that it won’t be on T1.

T1 announced the acquisition on Twitter. In addition to solidifying Gabbi as the team’s carry, the statement also confirmed that Nuengnara “23savage” Teeramahanon will not appear at the Regional Finals. T1 performed well in its regional league, earning third place after tiebreakers with a 5-2 match record.

New T1 Dota 2 roster featuring Gabbi

With the addition of its newest carry, the T1 Dota 2 roster now looks like this:

  • Kim “Gabbi” Villafuerte
  • Karl “Karl” Baldovino
  • Carlo “Kuku” Palad
  • Kenny “Xepher” Deo
  • Matthew “Whitemon” Filemon
  • Park “March” Tae-won (Coach)

Gabbi is one of the most experienced carry players in Southeast Asia with more than five years of competitive experience. He most recently played for Talon Esports with acclaimed support Tal “Fly” Aizik. Gabbi is most famous for his highly successful tenure with TNC Predator. Gabbi earned his biggest payday ever by taking ninth place at The International 2019, taking home a combined $686,602.

Was ana’s return on T1 a false rumor?

While Gabbi snatched up the prestigious safelane role on T1, there were heavy rumors that ana was originally considered for the spot. During a recent stream from T1 captain Carlo “Kuku” Palad, ana was shown playing with the team in scrims against other Southeast Asian squads. This led to attention-grabbing rumors that ana would become a permanent member.

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But as Gabbi’s signing shows, T1 ultimately chose to part ways with ana. The most likely case is that the team tried out multiple carries for the role including both ana and Gabbi. One scrim does not necessarily guarantee a contract.

It’s also possible that ana and T1 failed to reach an agreement or that the players simply felt that Gabbi was a better fit. Either way, this doesn’t rule out a potential comeback in the future. If anything, the fact that ana was playing in organized scrims shows that he’s interested in returning to pro Dota 2. Expect to see more news on the popular player after the DPC Regional Finals later this month.