Just a few years ago in 2017, Saieful "Fbz" Ilham was just a teenager in the Indonesian province of Makkasar, playing out of internet cafes. When Southeast Asia was not the region it is today, Fbz was committed to being a pro player by any means necessary. How did this Indonesian phenom make it into The International just a few years later? This is the story of Fbz. 

The humble beginnings

Fbz started out as just like any other kid, a casual gamer who played with his brothers. He was eventually introduced to Dota and is now one of the best offlaners in the world. 

Fbz started his career on a small Indonesian team known as Pandora Gaming. They played small, local Indonesian tournaments to start his career. It wasn't long before he caught the attention of BOOM Esports in 2018 and was added to BOOM ID. He played with soem great Indonesian players during his early days on BOOM such as Muhammad "inYourdreaM" Rizky and Rafli "Mikoto" Rahman. The teams would play in several open qualifiers to try and make bigger tournaments such as Bucharest Minor and the Chongqing major. 

The offlaner joined BOOM Esports because it was the number one professional team in Indonesia back then. Since started his journey as a pro player, Fbz’s perspective has changed from his casual gaming days. 

“Now that I am a professional player, the job comes with a responsibility of getting better every day and pushing myself in competition.” Fbz said. 

BOOM Esports’ recent rise to the top 

Fbz made it clear that getting to this point was not easy. BOOM Esports was not as succcessful till the latter part of 2021. He credits his brothers as important people in his life who always kept him going. Whether it was paying for his computer at the internet cafe, or emotional support, his family has always been there for him. 

It took until a new roster in mid-2021 helped BOOM Esports soar to the top of Southeast Asia. The team barely made any big tournaments before this point, but Fbz’s loyalty had paid off. With the new roster, BOOM Esports ran roughshod through the entire Southeast Asian Division. They finished first twice in the 2022 season, and were able to make it to several international tournaments such as GAMERS GALAXY: Dubai Invitational 2022 and the Arlington Major. Their top eight finish at the Arlington Major is what allowed BOOM Esports to find their place in The International 2022. 

“The bootcamp for The International has been really intense.” Fbz said. “We are working very hard and every scrim game feels like it is an actual TI game.” 

Fbz is one of Boom Esports’ best players, and one of the strongest offlaners coming into The International. His Mars is well known and has struck fear into the hearts of many international teams. He will now have a chance to showcase his skills at the highest level.