Richard "shox" Papillon talked to us about G2's victory over fnatic on the first day of the ELEAGUE Major, gave us his thoughts on the Swiss format, and shed some light on his team's preparation prior to the event.
At the start of your match against fnatic it was a back-and-forth battle, what do you remember from the first few rounds that made it so close?
It was really close, actually, we managed to take the pistol, they eco'd us and so on, it was a battle for the money, which they won at the end so we had to eco. But overall, I was not afraid at all.
After winning the pistol and exchanging a couple of rounds, at 10-10 you took over and closed it out, what gave you the edge in the end?
I don't remember this specific round, to be honest, but the only thing I know was that in the first gunround, even if they won the round they only saved like three weapons, so I knew if we got the next round we would have the money on our side and the side would be easier. The only thing I was trying to think about was that we needed that round, and we did it, after that we just managed to play the anti-eco properly and didn't lose too much economy. Everything went well, all the calls and plays and RpK did a beastly T side.
How long before the Major did you start your preparation and how many hours did you put in each day?
We started to play on the 3rd of January and we played about five maps a day, five days a week, plus one or two hours of deathmatch individually. Talking about the tactics and the team overall, I really tried to make it simple and going back to our old style when we won ECS and stuff. We have two or three tactics per map to be sure everything is clear and simple, we don't need to run elaborate tactics, because we aren't a team that is good in this. We need to just let our skill speak for us, so we really worked on this and actually it's starting pretty well.
A lot of the teams had a lot of practice prior to the Major, something we haven't seen in quite a long time with how many events there were at the end of 2016. Was there any team that was especially good in practice, who was on form?
We don't win all our practice matches of course, but we haven't been raped by anyone and we also didn't play all the teams that are here. But I will say, honestly, FaZe is a really good opponent here, they did a good bootcamp and all the players were satisfied about it. We played them on the first day of the bootcamp and maybe the last day of it and you could see they were really stepping up during that week. I think they can do pretty well here.
You've played the Swiss format a few times before, what do you make of it for the Major?
I think it's a really good system because of two things. First of all, for the spectators and the viewers, it's way more entertaining to see a lot of matches like this, and you have a lot of scenarios which can happen and you never know who is going to pass, so it's really good. Talking about the players and the team, it's harder now if you're the favorite, you have less of an advantage. I think that's good, because at the previous Majors when you were a Challenger playing against Legends, you had a disadvantage in the vetoes. You can also end up in a harder group, like a group of death, so it's kinda random. With this format, the teams coming from Challengers have a better chance to go to playoffs.