After Vega Squadron shocked FaZe in the second round of the Swiss format, we interviewed the team's in-game leader, Dmitriy "jR" Chervak, to find out how the team had prepared for the match and why their aggression can be hard to counter.
Vega Squadron have once again surprised a big name at the Main Qualifier, after having done so to NiP over a year ago prior to 2017's ELEAGUE Major, this time defeating FaZe on Inferno with a dominant 16-6 scoreline.
After the match — with the help of manager Alex "Lk_" Lemeshev — Dmitriy "jR" Chervak gave us an interview in which he discussed the team's playstyle, the preparation Vega had put in ahead of the match, and going into the third round with a 2-0 score.
First of all, I have to ask about what it was like to pull off such a massive upset against FaZe, and in such a way as well.
In this studio, we know how it feels, we beat NiP here a little over a year ago and that was a dominant score as well. As for the FaZe game, we came in totally prepared, we predicted the map that we were going to play, we were ready for the match tactically and mentally. We went in focused and when you get prepared for the game, I wouldn't say it is easier, but you just know what to do, there are no surprises.
Tell me about that preparation - was the aggression that you showed on both sides something you had planned all along, something that you knew would work?
We were just looking through some of their demos. As for the aggression, we were just trying to play as simple and almost the same way as when we play practices so that we don't make things complicated. Some teams actually hate practicing against us, because sometimes we play aggressively, teams shit on us for that. But as for that match, we just looked through the demos and saw that this aggression could pay off, and it did.
Who is the one making the plan for a match like this?
How it works now is that I first discuss it with Fierce, the coach, we go through some replays, watch the gameplan of the opponent and think what we can do. Then we call in the guys and we do a meeting to discuss the things that could work, we bring up the ideas, the guys can either approve of them or give their own ideas. Then it's good to go. When we had no coach, I looked through some replays at first and I wouldn't even say anything to my teammates, I just called in-game and didn't even say why I was doing that. I didn't do it in a complicated way.
You mentioned other teams being angry about your playstyle, what is it that makes it so hard to comprehend, to counter?
Why it looks complicated for other teams to counter is because by pushing them or attacking early, we just ruin their gameplan or their round plan. When your player gets killed in the first 15 seconds, it's quite hard to do the round that you wanted in the freezetime for example.
Why sometimes we're doing so is because we've been playing together for a really long time and we feel comfortable when we're playing the clutch situations. If it's not 5v5, it's maybe easier for us to play against the opponent in this stage of the round.
How are you feeling now going into the third round, does it matter at all who you meet out of the options you have?
Coming into the third day with a 2-0 score is easier psychologically rather than coming into the third day with a 0-2 score. Having a 2-0 lead can make us play more free, I wouldn't say we can make mistakes, but it's easier to play mentally. You only have to win one game and you've got three chances. It doesn't matter who we face, out of all the 16 teams that are playing in the first stage, it doesn't matter because there are no weak teams.