draken: doplan had an offer from NiP
After Epsilon's heartbreaking loss to GODSENT in the upper bracket semi-final of the PGL EU Minor, we talked to William "draken" Sundin to hear his thoughts on the match and his teammates.
The Swedish matchup went the whole distance, with a 16-14 on Train followed by overtimes on Cache and Mirage. With the more experienced team in GODSENT winning the series in the end, Epsilon find themselves in the lower bracket of the EU Minor playoffs after winning their group over ENCE and Heroic.
Coming into the event, you had a last-minute roster move, we can talk about how that went down first. disco doplan was actually here (in Bucharest) but he left and you picked up kalle. Can you talk me through the process of letting him go and getting a replacement?
We let doplan go because fnatic wanted him and he got a spot directly at the Major. So he felt it as well, of course he should take this opportunity, fnatic has been the best team in the world for a long time. Not now though, but they have that established era so to speak.
When at first fnatic wanted doplan some players knew it, other players didn’t know, so it was a bit shaky. We had the DreamHack qualifier versus Kinguin, we lost in two overtimes there as well. It was a bit shaky in the team and we felt that something was wrong. Then we just said - of course you should go, and we let him go.
It was six hours before our flight here, we called kalle like “dude can you come play?” and he showed up the night before. We haven’t practiced once with him. So it was a big step for us to come first in the group but we will see what happens.
So the move from fnatic was known for some time? Did that influence ESWC? Was it known before that?
It was known before that, as you know, doplan had an offer from NiP as well, and since then he got let down by them. At ESWC, something was wrong and fnatic were not sure really - so the deal was on and off. So doplan was really bad mentally - he was let down first by NiP, then fnatic.
So it was really shaky at ESWC and then the DreamHack Winter qualifier before we came here. For us as well, we thought it would be better to bring in a guy that really wants to [be here]. We had two options: we play with doplan here and he leaves after the Minor or we bring in a new guy that really wants to [be here]. Doplan is still a very good friend of us and he is a really, really good player - and we thought we should bring in something fresh and hungry that we could work on after the Minor as well.
So how did you decide on kalle and how did you adapt to playing with him in the team?
We decided, as I said, like six hours before the flight. I said like: “Guys, shouldn’t we just call kalle?”. There is no one else in the Swedish scene I think, and he is Norwegian but I don’t think there is anyone in Norway either who could replace doplan. But kalle - he has experience, he played with BARBARR in 1.6 as well, he is a nice guy we all know but me, REZ or freddieb have never played with him.
Did he just go into disco doplan’s roles and positions or?
It was a bit of both. On some maps he took doplan’s spots but on others we adapted a bit. But he works very well with the team.
Going on to this tournament, you won your group, did you actually expect you would do so well in the groups?
We still felt comfortable even though doplan got picked up because he wasn’t really the star player anymore, he was of course a big impact player but me, freddieb, REZ, BARBARR - everyone - we knew that we are better than every team here. We shoot harder, we have better aim, skillwise, than any team here. It’s just that they have some more experience and are more established team-wise.
Talking about experience, today you were going up against GODSENT - they are not actually that much older than you, but they have a lot more experience - triple major winners - was that a factor in the game? Not saying you were afraid, but have you overestimated them?
I don’t think so. We never beat them before, and now we managed to do it. We just thought on Mirage that we had the game. We had the 13-2 lead and then we just lost it. It wasn’t really the players of GODSENT it was more the score. You know, when you have a 13-2 and the score goes to 13-8, 13-9, they get 10 rounds in a row and then we get one, they get one and then we are money screwed. I wouldn’t say we were afraid of them but we know they are really good players.
You are still in the lower bracket now so the next match is either against Space Soldiers or HellRaisers. Any thoughts on the opposition, who would you rather play?
I don’t think it will matter who we will play, I think we will 2-0 both of them, maybe 2-1 but I’m really confident we will still go to the next step.
Professeur writes for HLTV.org and can be found on Twitter.