Dota 2 Roster News: Azure Ray Brings Back Ori and Faith_bian

A surprise return. Azure Ray

When Dota 2 team Azure Ray announced last week that it was making changes to the roster, there were those who were surprised. After all, the team placed 4th during The International 2023 and was even declared the champion of ESL One Kuala Lumpur 2023. What's even surprising is when they announced their new roster. That's because the team is bringing back Zeng "Ori" Jiaoyang and Zhang "Faith_bian" Ruida to the competitive scene.

Back in November, the team made a roster change and even brought in a new coach. Then towards the end of December, the players who were brought in made the decision to leave the team. In a post, the team said that this was a result of " long-term communication and negotiation." This resulted in Lou "Lou" Zhen and Jiang An being the only ones left on the roster. However, Azure Ray did reveal that negotiation for the three players to replace those who left were already completed.

A Second Aegis

Despite having a long history in the Dota 2 competitive scene, Faith_bian isn't the type to go on different teams. From 2014 to 2022, he was part of four teams which were Speed Gaming (2014), Wings Gaming (2014 to 2017), EHOME (2017 to 2020) and PSG.LGD (2020 to 2022). It was after The International 2022 when his contract with PSG.LGD expired and announced that he would be retiring from the pro scene.

In a post, Azure Ray revealed that Faith_bian had difficulty making a decision. While he did love to play and compete, it appeared that "he had already stabilized his life." However, it seems that he was moved by the enthusiasm, as well as the sincerity, of everyone in the team. With a TI win already under his belt, it would be exciting to see his journey in getting a second one.

Back on the Scene

Much like Faith_bian, Ori also had a long career in Dota 2. Her started way back in 2016 with DUOBAO. Then in 2017 he signed up with Vici Gaming where he would stay until 2021. It was then that he signed up with Team Aster. Despite good results, Ori made the decision to retire after The International 2022. There were a lot of talks, but one of the reports was that his parents wanted he to have a different career. Not surprising considering that not only did his finish law but even pass the Legal Licensing Exam in China.

What made him decide to return to the competitive scene? Not much was revealed except Azure Ray saying that part of his contract involved respecting his personal wishes. Regardless of the reason, it would be exciting to see him back in competition especially with his deep hero pool.

Teams in China hasn't been performing and dominating compared to the past. Hopefully these two are going to change it and shake things up. What about you? Excited to see these two play again?

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