We talked to Kirill "ANGE1" Karasiow following HellRaisers' successful campaign in ESL Pro League Season 6 Finals group stage, where the mixture placed second and secured a spot in the quarter-finals.
You got off to a really poor start in the tournament with 0-11 against Luminosity on Cache, what was the problem there?
It was the first big tournament for three of us and I had some problems with my PC, which was my own fault, it was some video settings on maximum quality and I didn't fix it, I realized it late so I played really badly.
It was the first map of the tournament, I'm really glad we managed to come back from 0-11, it helped us a lot in terms of confidence in the next games. To be honest, they were playing really well, and now I think it was a mistake to play Cache with them, because we weren't expecting them to perform this well. We decided to play their best map because Cache is good for us as well, but for now, we all see the results of the guys, they were pretty good and it was a mistake in the veto.
Going into the following matches on Inferno, both very comfortable against fnatic and Liquid, who like to play it a lot, are you just well-versed on the map?
We should play some maps well, right, we're coming to a big LAN and it looks like our Inferno is in a good shape right now. I think pistols worked out, we won four pistols on the two Infernos, so we could just snowball teams. Our positions as T and CT fit well, that's why we were confident.
What was it like playing against Astralis in a match that ended up pushing you to the playoffs, overall it was a very close clash with a lot of close rounds...
Oh, it was really hard, there were fights every round, starting with the pistol, the clutch from ISSAA helped us start well as CT. We expected a close game, I'm really happy we managed to win it, it's a pity that Astralis played with a stand-in. I would prefer to play the full lineup of Astralis to test ourselves, because we're mostly here to test ourselves and to show the quality of our game against big names.
Your last match with FaZe didn't work out, a slow start on Overpass before you caught up, did you take your foot off the pedal?
It felt like we were relaxed already, when we won against Astralis, it was our main goal for this tournament. We succeeded with our main goal and everyone was a bit relaxed so we didn't get into the game from the beginning and FaZe just punished us, it was a really rough start for us, we didn't do shit.
They had all the economy with probably 16k at 6-0, so it was really hard, but it's really good that we managed to do one more comeback from 0-9 to 6-9, it shows that we can play. If we weren't so relaxed, I think it would have been another game. I hope we meet FaZe in the playoffs.
Talking about the playoffs, like you said at the beginning you have three players that haven't really been to a big tournament like this before, haven't played on a stage like this. Is that going to affect the new guys who perhaps don't have the experience to deal with the pressure?
To be honest, all of our guys are really confident. I was surprised that ISSAA and w0xic don't get affected by anything like LAN, it doesn't affect them that much. But of course anything can happen and we will see the results only after showing up on a big stage.
Do they take the pressure more as motivation, then?
Yes, that's what I like about our guys the most, they aren't scared. Whether it's a tough enemy or a crowd cheering for us or for someone else, it motivates them more, they want to prove themselves, I like this kind of character in our guys.