mertz: "I'm very free on both CT and T side"
We interviewed one of North's newest players, Daniel "mertz" Mertz, after his team's win over Heroic to find out how the Danish squad has progressed since cs_summit 2 and how they've been doing so far at IEM Katowice.
We got a hold of Daniel "mertz" Mertz after the Danes took their revenge on Heroic, who eliminated Mathias "MSL" Lauridsen & co. at cs_summit 2 earlier this month, and talked to him about how the AWPer and the team have adapted to each other since their debut.
You already debuted at summit, but we know you didn't have much practice before that event, how have you meshed with the new lineup since then, with about three more weeks of practice behind you?
First off, we really just tried to practice as much as we could, also up to summit, we haven't really had any time off. For me, personally, it's a big step up from the academy team, I have to get used to playing against all the good guys in Counter-Strike. I'm finally starting to feel a little bit more comfortable.
What have been the biggest challenges for you that come with that?
Obviously, these teams are going to anti-strat, that's not really a big part of the lower scene in Counter-Strike. I don't know what to say, they use their brain a lot more, they're just a lot smarter.
Does it play a part in your aggression? As someone who is known to be very aggressive, do you now hold back more, does MSL's system affect that?
Well, I'm actually very free on both CT and T side, usually I just ask "Can I do this? Can I do that?" and either they say "no" or they say "yes, go for it". We have this time to try to figure out what we're going to do with my aggression and all that, and I have to figure out how much they want me to go aggressive. It's just a big part of the puzzle that we need to fix before we get really good.
Here, aside from the FaZe loss which was quite one-sided, you have looked pretty comfortable. Can you tell me about your showing here in Poland so far, going into the last match of groups?
First off, we met NiP, we expected to win, we had a good understanding of the veto, so we were ready for the maps that we were going to play against these teams and so far we've been spot on in every one. With NiP, we didn't really have a big problem, early in the game we had a good lead and we just never got uncomfortable.
Against FaZe it was a whole other story, they're the best team in the world right now, so of course we're going to be a little bit more frightened. I think first off we made the mistake that we didn't play our game, we played their game, and that's why we think we lost that game. There was a lot of miscommunication and stuff that happens because we're a new team, still.
Against Heroic, we're not that comfortable on Mirage yet, we're getting to know how we want to play, but Inferno is a whole another story, we have practiced it enough to know how we're going to play.
There was a lot of screaming between you and Heroic, did the match have an extra flare to it given that you have this rivalry with them?
We lost to them at summit and in the IEM qualifier, so we just really wanted to win. We don't want to be the third-best team in Denmark, we want to be the best team in Denmark. To do that we have to beat Heroic and Astralis and that's been the obstacle so far, Heroic first and then Astralis.
Is there any preference from your side as to who you want to play in your last match here in groups, between G2 and NiP? Would NiP be more comfortable seeing as you already beat them once before?
Yeah, yeah, personally I would like to play NiP again. We feel like we can play against them in our game. We haven't practiced or played against G2 yet, so that would be a tougher opponent. With the team's history, they haven't gotten very good results against G2, so I'm hoping for NiP.