Russian president Vladimir Putin personally congratulated the members of Team Spirit after they won The International 10, and DOTA 2 fans were quick to meme the leader’s praise.
After playing group stage matches from a literal kitchen, Team Spirit went on to secure one of the largest prizes in esports history ($18,208,300) and become the first Russian team to take The International title home.
It was a massive accomplishment, so much so that the President of Russia himself sent his “dear friends” a personal message on the underdog championship run.
Putin congratulates Team Spirit
“Dear friends! I congratulate you on your well-deserved victory at The International 2021 Dota 2 World Championship,” the letter reads. “For the first time in history, the Russian team of Team Spirit club won these prestigious competitions. Well done!”
Based on the second paragraph it almost seems that Putin, or whoever wrote this letter for him, at least watched some of the tournament, including the Grand Final.
- Read More: Top 20 highest earning Dota 2 Pro Players
“On the way to the final you demonstrated bright leadership qualities and cohesion, and in the decisive match, which became a real test of skill and character, managed to concentrate and at the most crucial moment intercept the initiative from strong rivals,” it continued.
“In fact, they have proved that our eSportsmen are always results-oriented and able to conquer any peaks. I wish you new success and all the best – Vladimir Putin.”
Dota 2 fans react to Putin’s letter
The Vladmirs offering pic.twitter.com/d0SEPuwuJh
— Ekmi Gasari (@ekmigasari) October 18, 2021
Team spirit: let’s divide the money
— hans (@LawlietHanzer) October 18, 2021
— rizky d. (@_rzkyd) October 18, 2021
Many players joked that this was “The Vladimir’s offering,” referring to an item available for sale in the in-game Dota 2 shop. Others seemed amazed a major world leader would acknowledge esports at all.
Of course, there were plenty of tax jokes as well, with one player joking he actually meant “CONGRATZ GUYS! NOW IS TIME FOR TAXES!”