Interview with Na`Vi.G2A.Edward
In his latest interveiw with cybersport.ru, Natus Vincere G2A CS:GO player Ioann "Edward" Suharev spoke about the team's performance at ELEAGUE Major 2017 and on the group D at the upcoming DreamHack Las Vegas, shared his opinion on the change in competitive map pool and the best team in the world, as well as revealed his current relations with his former teammate Zeus. We've translated the interview for our English-speaking fans.
— Most leagues have invites for their LAN final, but not ESL Pro League. It has the online game. What do you think about this format?
— It's ok. I understand that tournament organizers need regular matches for popularity and increase of the audience. However, as a player, I don't feel comfortable playing from my home, when everyone has different conditions. Moreover, you need to play important matches that might decide your slot in LAN under such circumstances. This is not a practicing league for us. We set only the most ambitious goals. Our current task is to advance from the group. There will be quite a different tournament at LAN, which will be a separate task.
— What is the reason of your defeat to Astralis at The ELEAGUE Major 2017?
— We got up on the wrong side of bed and made childish mistakes. We were very afraid to make a mistake and lost our confidence in ourselves. We played very constrained both psychologically and emotionally.
— You finished group stage 3-0 and then had a 2-day break. Did it influence your performance in the quarterfinal?
— When you constantly play tense matches, you get warmed up, so one more game is no stress to you. You'll take it for granted and show your ultimate perfromance regardless of the ingame situation. That's exactly what we lacked. Another reason of our defeat is that we hadn't participated in any tournament in December prior to the major, instead we'd only practiced. I can't say we lost because of vacations, but we could've spent them more productively and be more prepared to the game.
— The tournament had Swiss system. What do you think about it?
— I liked it very much. You've just made me remember that we participated in Swiss format events twice and both times we advanced to playoff with 3-0 scores from group stage. I think the system is fair. All the teams, even the qeakest ones, come to a tournament knowing they'll play three matches for sure. The powerful teams will play with equal rivals all the time. Everything is fair here.
— The major finalists were Virtus.pro and Astralis. Are they the best teams in the world?
— I think the competition is so high that you can name a team the best only after it wins the tournament. Every team can beat every other team. Surely Virtus.pro and Astralis have advantage over the other teams in psychology and self confidence, however when it comes to performance quality, many teams are as good as them. No one knows what to expect from the next tournament.
— Though they played with a stand-in, SK Gaming made it to the semifinal? Did they surprise you?
— I respect this team very much, as well as the people who play there. There was a significant moment when, after losing to Virtus.pro, they went to the stage and expressed their gratitude to Fox for playing several tournaments with them. This is the act of true champions. They had 2 very close matches with VP and could win them.
SK Gaming thanks fox for his play
— What can you say about French teams? Can we expect the domination of a French "dream team"?
— I think G2 Esports can show good results. I don't know who is their IGL, but with proper leadership and game setting they will succeed, since every player of the team has a very good individual skill. They have one of the world's best snipers and good aimers. They need working and practicing.
I feel that the French have about 10 people who reshuffle on a regular basis. They'd play a year or two together and then reshuffle regardless of the results.
— We've seen another reshuffle in Swedish teams.
— This is very rare when a team returns to its previous roster. You need to know and understand why they reshuffled before to understand what is going on now. The Alliance once gathered together. They even seemed to show good performance, but it didn't last long. I don't know what to expect from fnatic. I think much has changed since they played together for the last time. They've missed a lot. Counter-Strike is changing and the level of performance of every team on the scene is growing. Those who are catching up need to work hard.
— Two CIS teams, FlipSid3 Tactics and HellRaisers, failed at the major with similar results - 0-3.
— They weren't expected to break through, though had improved their shape before the major. Many people thought they'd advance from the group. As concerns FlipSid3, though they had won DreamHack, everyone understood that the competition at that tournament wasn't big. So no surpise they didn't make it to the playoff.
— There was a CIS team Gambit Esports that advanced to the playoff. Zeus demonstrates his leadership qualities and the recent results of the team proved that. What can you tell us about this team?
— I agree with you. Zeus knows how to win and the players gained confidence in themselves. They do well and are on a roll. Now everything depends on them. If they work hard, they'll become a tier one team. Even now they can be considered a team that can defeat almost any rival in the world, that's what we call tier one.
Zeus at the ELEAGUE Major 2017
— Back to Zeus theme. In Daniil's profile for the Major, he said he'd been shocked learning you've replaced him with s1mple. Is he offended by you? Do you still communicate?
— I'd say "No". But it's not about me, it's about him. I still communicate with him just as we did when we played in one team. Nothing changed here. I don't want to recall and tell the story of Zeus. This is personal and intimate. We've communicated well all the time. However, we see each other rarely. It's not that we are very close friends.
— Valve changed the rules on coaches. Did it impact your play significantly?
— Initially, it was very hard, since starix acted as a captain. He was the sixth player who didn't play, but stood behind our backs and coordinated the whole team. However, Denis now took the role of the captain, coordinator and leader of the team. In my opinion he does well. He needs time to grow and develop, he learns a lot.
— You are the "oldest" player in the team and now the only representative of the "golden roster" of Natus Vincere G2A. How do you manage the characters of your younger teammates? Can you calm down s1mple? Or is it starix and Ugin who do it?
— This is the exclusive task of Ugin, our sports psychologist, our mental coach. He talks to us, calms down if we are stressed, etc. This is his task and, except for him, nobody can fully cope with this task.
— Recently s1mple said on a stream that he'll be the main AWPer. However, GuardiaN still plays with AWP.
— I don't know why he said that. We didn't discuss it in the team. He sometimes likes to say things so that his viewers and subscribers discuss them.
— Dust 2 was taken for rework. Does the map requires changes?
— In my opinion, none of the maps requires significant rework. None of the teams plays ideally on any map. It's just that Dust 2 is the oldest map. I know that Valve pays attention to matchmaking statistics: how many times people played a map. Maybe, dust 2 is played less frequently now. The popularity of the map has dropped down, it hasn't been changed for a while, so it will be reworked.
— What do you think of Inferno? Have you guys begun practicing it?
— The team began practicing it last Tuesday. However, previously each of us had played it individually in mixes, FPL, etc. My first impression so far - little has changed. The banana has been altered significantly, the timings, rotations and strategies will change. However, it's early to think about it. We have little experience on this map.
— Why did Na`Vi players decide to ignor WESG?
— Sasha and I decided to refuse in order to focus on team practices, since we have a new roster. We needed to gain shape and make progress. WESG simply didn't fit our schedule. Otherwise, I would've been glad to participate, if I had had more time.
— Your next tournament is DreamHack Masters Las Vegas 2017. Do you think you're lucky with the group?
— I can say that our group isn't strong. However, as I've mentioned before, the current level of performance of the teams is really high. Every team can beat every other team. So the rivals shouldn't be underestimated.
— You've been on pro scene for quite a while. What is your motivation to play on? Where do you find resources?
— I simply love this game. I like playing very much and to improve all the time. I have initial desire to be the best in everything I do. It's just that the first thing I loved was playing Counter-Strike.
— You've been in 50 countries so far. Which city would you like to live in, and what place would you like to visit again?
— I don't want to move anywhere. Frankly speaking, I enjoyed visiting Russia a lot: Yekaterinburg (located on the border between Europe and Asia - translator's note), Irkutsk and Krasnoyarsk (cities in Siberia - translator's note). They are remote cities, beautiful ones. I liked the pople there and their attitude. New York is a very beautiful city, unusual one. However, I wouldn't go abroad to live there upon my will.
— Recently Alexander Kohanovskyy resigned the position of CEO. Did he participate in the life of your team?
— He hadn't engaged much in the life of the team. He had worked more on financial aspects or made important decisions of the organization. He did come a couple of times to the most important tournaments and supported us, but that was it.
— Do you read eSports media?
— I haven't read much lately. I seldom read some articles on HLTV.org. I sometimes visit cybersports.ru. I like the content you make. That's it. Sometimes I read Twitter.
— What do you think of gossips and the players' personal life made public by media?
— This is gossip, yellow press. I don't take it seriously. At least I don't take seriously most texts, since these are gossip or personal opinion. This is it. Maybe that is the reason I seldom read it.
— What do you think of the players' posts on social networking websites turned into "newsmakers"?
— Personally I don't have active social [networking] life. My page serves more for my personal goals, tasks, communication with my friends and posting things I like. It is not related to eSports. However, I understand how the world works. If you are a popular person, everyone wants to learn about you as much as possible. The players should create their pages and post information about themselves on a permanent basis. All you need to do is to sort it.