Aleksib: "We mix it up a lot, especially on LAN, and it does feel like some teams are trying to anti-strat us"

We talked to Aleksi "Aleksib" Virolainen during the media day at BLAST Pro Series in Madrid ahead of ENCE's first matches at the tournament in Spain.

ENCE are one of the invited teams for BLAST Pro Series Madrid, making this the second time the Finnish team have been invited to one of RFRSH's tournaments after a third-place finish at BLAST Pro Series São Paulo, where they were nearly able to make the grand final.

Aleksib believes his team's communication is the key to their success

In the interview, Aleksib talks about the importance of communication, remaining as a top 5 team in the ranking, being invited to BLAST Pro Series Madrid, having teams watch them and how they play, and having a Finnish player like Miikka "suNny" Kemppi currently on the market.

You've been a top 5 team for a couple of months now, do you think you can keep it up?

I think so, definitely. We haven't been to a LAN for a month, and at first we didn't know we'd be coming here and were waiting for cs_summit, so when we got invited here it was really good for us because there had been a big break. It's good that we play here because we can keep our level up when we go into summit, without too much of a break.

I think we can keep the spot if we play really well as a team, which most of the time comes down to our communication. We're all Finnish and we have small communications that open up opportunities for all of our players and most of the time, when we lose, it doesn't end up being that we played poorly or that our tactics are bad, it's usually down to the clutches or the 2vs2 situations, and we usually shine when we communicate well and play the rounds out.

As you said, it's been a while since you've been on LAN. How have you used this time?

We've been practicing a lot. We had some online games, and people have seen that we've been playing kind of bad online. We started our MDL season 0-2, but we're focusing 100% on the LAN matches. We don't want to show what we have before a big LAN because that weakens the strategy we've been practicing. We've been trying to play well online, but I think on LAN we're just so much better as a team because we get to use our different tactics.

Where do you think your ceiling as a team is, especially when compared to the elite teams in the world?

I think it's up to us to show in the upcoming tournaments, but I think there's Na`Vi to beat, and I think we're very capable if we just play our game. Astralis are a level higher than everyone else, although they will especially have to show it at this tournament, but we can be top 3. Liquid and Astralis are hard opponents, although as we did in the Major we can beat Liquid in a BO3, it's not impossible, although I do think we need to level up as a team somehow to consistently beat them.

At the Major, you got that crazy run. Have you noticed it become a bit harder now that teams are studying you more and respecting you more, putting in more energy when facing you...

Yeah, actually, it's pretty funny. We've been playing teams on Train and what I've seen is that they're doing some of the same tactics we do. I'm not taking credit for all of the tactics, I've gotten some from months ago, or even years ago, when I was playing practices. In fact, one of our best tactics was taken from HUNDEN. Or at least I saw them do it in practice, and then I instantly copied it. It's one of our favorite tactics. I'm not going to tell you what it is, but it's great to see because I think it means people are watching our Train, so they are taking us into consideration and taking us seriously.

It's not that difficult for us because our game is not that readable since we play a lot of aggressive rounds in which you can't really read what we're going to do. Maybe you can see some things that happen frequently, but we mix it up a lot, especially on LAN, and it does feel like some teams are trying to anti-strat us.

You've been invited to a BLAST Pro Series before, where you barely missed the final. Is the goal here to make that BO3?

Yes, of course, we always want to win because that's the most important thing and everyone hates losing, we have good maps for the BO1s here, so if we just play our own game, get our communication going, I think we can reach the final. I'm just hoping to beat Astralis because we were so close at the last BLAST Pro Series. We were winning that match by a round, then they stacked B and won that round, and we lost the game 16-14 which really sucked because that would have been the game to give us the boost to make the finals. It's a new LAN now, but I think if we play like last time we can qualify for the finals and have a good BO3.

You're talking a lot about communication, is that giving you trouble? What do you think you can do to make sure everything flows?

Plenty of it comes before the game. In Shanghai we were tired as a team, the players were tired, we were just coming from Brazil and just had a couple of days in Finland, so everyone was jet lagged. I'm not blaming everything on it, but if your game is built around playing really default and around reacting fast, that really affects your game.

If everyone is not completely focused it affects us a lot, so I think that we just need to focus on the mental aspects and on improving our mentality, to not get frustrated if we lose a bad round. I talk about communication a lot because every top team knows how important it is. If you're not shooting that well, and if not everyone is playing their A game, but your communication is on point, it forgives you. You can play situations well enough that even if you don't get the kill, you can still win the round, which is very important in our gameplay and it's something I like to emphasize.

There's this cloud over Finland, which is suNny being on the market. He hasn't said much since going inactive, is it something looming over you guys?

I know that plenty of people in Finland and in the community are talking about who we should drop and if we should bring suNny on, but personally, I don't think about it. I think we can be a consistent top 5 team and break into the top 3 by just playing really good tournaments over and over. We just need to fix small details, we've been a team for over a year now, so we know what our strengths are, we know what our weaknesses are, and it's really easy to try and fix things. We just need to show that we're capable of doing it and improving, which is the most important thing. We need to keep practicing, play more LANs, and see what our results are.

Finland Miikka 'suNny' Kemppi
Miikka 'suNny' Kemppi
Age:
25
Team:
Rating 1.0:
1.08
Maps played:
1043
KPR:
0.75
DPR:
0.69
APR:
0.15
Finland Aleksi 'Aleksib' Virolainen
Aleksi 'Aleksib' Virolainen
Age:
22
Team:
No team
Rating 1.0:
1.01
Maps played:
588
KPR:
0.68
DPR:
0.65
APR:
0.18
#1
s1mple | 
India S1ayR 
ence was one fluke at the major like we had immortals and gambit
2019-05-10 14:59
F5
2019-05-10 14:58
#6
 | 
Sweden Unluko 
F5
2019-05-10 14:59
#11
s1mple | 
India S1ayR 
wtf mens))) i am on my phone ez
2019-05-10 15:00
F5
2019-05-10 17:21
#63
 | 
New Zealand onelover11 
F5
2019-05-10 18:51
#13
 | 
India Noobdian 
F5
2019-05-10 15:00
#23
 | 
Brazil EZ4ENCEDENS 
aahahahah ence is top 1 now because astralis is losingf u just mad coz u shit on street
2019-05-10 15:10
:DDDDDDDDDDD
2019-05-10 15:51
#55
 | 
India KNOX23 
its too hard to make you realise now sad af
2019-05-10 18:17
fac
2019-05-10 16:30
Eat shit indian pig none of them were flukes you been freed from the Brits was a fluke.
2019-05-10 18:18
+1
2019-05-10 20:34
LOL
2019-05-11 03:18
Name and flag checks out
2019-05-11 08:52
Hmm; monk12? You alright boy?
2019-05-11 12:08
That makes a lot of sense.
2019-05-13 10:06
Agree fully to fluke
2019-05-10 18:26
#82
 | 
Germany fjdeN 
And cloud9
2019-05-11 12:15
#2
 | 
Finland Vkims 
Ez
2019-05-10 14:58
he mixes well like mixwell
2019-05-10 14:58
#46
 | 
Europe lalt 
Those two definitely don't mix well, at least from ENCE's POV.
2019-05-10 16:37
#5
 | 
Finland perkelemeister 
ez4ence
2019-05-10 14:59
#7
 | 
India Wise_Indian 
Vary Kul
2019-05-10 14:59
Wow
2019-05-10 14:59
#9
 | 
Finland EdiEz 
EZ4ALEKSIB
2019-05-10 14:59
Handsome guy
2019-05-10 14:59
#12
 | 
India Noobdian 
True
2019-05-10 15:00
#14
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
hahaha watch ence lose all their matches now
2019-05-10 15:02
#15
Germany pmb  
hahahaha no
2019-05-10 15:02
#17
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
hahahah ok boycott blast and dont watch games then, i will laugh as the rating plummets on hltv
2019-05-10 15:02
#39
Germany pmb  
blast is just a random event with some bo1s, cant take that seriously
2019-05-10 15:58
#70
Germany pmb  
lUlULUlUl
2019-05-10 22:09
#71
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
you actually think ence is good yes?
2019-05-10 22:10
#72
Germany pmb  
just as good as any other top 5 team, they all win and lose (besides astralis maybe). you'll have to get over the fact that cs is pretty random, mentality matters most
2019-05-10 22:12
#73
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
what isn't random is the tradition of na'vi losing first game of tourneys, if this game was played tomorrow they would destroy flukence.
2019-05-10 22:13
#74
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
hahahahahahahah
2019-05-10 23:03
#84
Germany pmb  
what about "they win some they lose some" did you not understand?
2019-05-11 14:25
#85
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
hahahahahahaha ence winning??? no, what part of they're a fluke trash team dont you understand
2019-05-11 15:11
#87
Germany pmb  
ok, i guess you are happy envying your fellow country man
2019-05-11 15:16
#88
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
hahahahahahaha what is there to envy in a fluke team?? if not for 1 fluke run in major they would never be here, undeserved.
2019-05-11 15:17
#89
Germany pmb  
getting some big $$ while you act as if they arnt top5 lul
2019-05-11 15:22
#90
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
they aren't top 5, youre delusional if you think they are actually a top 5 team
2019-05-11 15:23
#91
Germany pmb  
who is then
2019-05-11 15:26
#92
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
fnatic is better mibr is better nrg is better nip is better renegades is better
2019-05-11 15:27
#93
Germany pmb  
LOL they all suck ass especially nip and mibr what drugs are you on man
2019-05-11 15:29
#94
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
maybe, but they are still way better than ence
2019-05-11 15:31
#95
Germany pmb  
based on what results
2019-05-11 15:37
#97
Germany pmb  
you have any last words? haha
2019-05-11 23:19
Again this retard :DD btw, Ence will win
2019-05-10 15:30
#37
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
HAHAHAHAHA good one dude, ence are good. but they are overrated as fuck right now and dont deserve their ranking
2019-05-10 15:52
Agreed , top 30 at max
2019-05-10 18:27
Ence won.
2019-05-13 08:04
#99
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
blast events don't matter, blast beat astralis not ence.
2019-05-13 09:03
You are retard. The Final was BO3 and actually Ence beat Astralis 3-0 in that tournament. Dust2/Nuke/Train.
2019-05-13 09:57
#101
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
ah ence fans, they dont realize when something is a blatant fluke. garbage dumpster team
2019-05-13 09:59
#75
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
hahahahaahahaha
2019-05-10 23:03
#32
 | 
Brazil EZ4ENCEDENS 
haha fgt u gay
2019-05-10 15:31
#76
 | 
Finland Autisthicc 
ahahhahahahaha
2019-05-10 23:03
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-10 15:02
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-10 15:03
ALEKSIB top 3 IGL for sure
2019-05-10 15:03
#20
 | 
Poland Astoner55 
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-10 15:03
ez4ence
2019-05-10 15:03
:+ cool
2019-05-10 15:07
#24
 | 
Japan ehegao 
god allu will save you.
2019-05-10 15:10
you suck fluke bots.
2019-05-10 15:13
#30
 | 
Brazil EZ4ENCEDENS 
get rekt when ence destroys enemys ence is offially top 1 after tornament
2019-05-10 15:30
#31
 | 
Brazil EZ4ENCEDENS 
u should lick testicals little kid
2019-05-10 15:31
ENCE, forever saving strats
2019-05-10 15:14
Onlinestars lmao.
2019-05-10 15:59
true
2019-05-10 16:00
ENCE will prove delusional haters wrong once again. They will wreck everybody on LAN. Who gives a single fucking shit about online results in leagues which are filled by a bunch of wanking nerds who walk like ants under carpets on LAN because they are insecure kids. 95% of HLTV newfags have never been to a LAN and act like high-paid analysts. You bunch of losers have no clue to be honest. Respect to Aleksib for staying loyal to his teammates and wanting to improve and adapt with them. Respect to god HUNDEN for giving them youngsters a vision for the game.
2019-05-10 15:26
Hahah good one, almost laughed my self to death
2019-05-10 18:28
#28
 | 
United States Jakepot 
Ez for him
2019-05-10 15:29
Of course they mix it up a lot, since "Aleksib is tactical genius. He is most know of his signature tactic 'going B, but then going A' ".
2019-05-10 15:36
lmao
2019-05-10 15:52
#34
 | 
Pakistan LoOuU2 
Most sexy guy in the pro scene. Dont at at me
2019-05-10 15:41
@you 8/8
2019-05-10 16:04
#38
 | 
Korea ecsta_s1 
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-10 15:56
#43
 | 
Finland zntei 
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-10 16:09
GOHU
2019-05-10 17:25
HUNDEN CSGOD
2019-05-10 16:14
expected from goat hunden
2019-05-10 16:41
#48
 | 
India P1^t0N 
Ez4Ence cooker me dukkar fell well well
2019-05-10 16:53
god hunden even helping others succeed
2019-05-10 16:56
#50
cadiaN | 
Finland 0lter 
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-10 16:57
GOHU
2019-05-10 17:25
cool
2019-05-10 17:21
#60
s1 | 
Armenia gr1nch 
dude is surprized bcuz teams on top lvl are prepared for them and trying to anti-strat?
2019-05-10 18:30
well ofc they're going to do that? got me rolling tbh
2019-05-10 19:02
:) dope interview
2019-05-10 18:37
"In fact, one of our best tactics was taken from HUNDEN" no mention of the finnish counter strike veteran xarte?!?!?!?!?!
2019-05-10 18:47
alright
2019-05-10 19:21
#66
 | 
Germany Bestgerman69 
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-10 20:23
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-10 20:49
god hunden behind every best tactic, expected
2019-05-10 20:52
I met hunden in London during the Faceit Major. He came out of a bush and joined me and my friends on our walk to mcdonalds. Whilst we were walking to the mcd he was bragging about how he taught gla1ve everything he knew. Got a picture with him where he made fun of my fnatic jersey. At mcdonalds he took like 10 packs of ketchup. Nice guy. He was pretty drunk.
2019-05-10 23:35
I bet he taught AleksiB his number one strat going to A but then going to B. HUNDEN is still top 3 IGL for sure.
2019-05-11 03:14
#83
steel | 
Poland Vojtman 
GOD HUNDEN
2019-05-11 13:17
#86
 | 
United States spider_man 
HUNDEN
2019-05-11 15:13
Who is HUNDEN and what is relationship between him and Aleksib?
2019-05-11 21:05
Ence is Goat!
2019-05-13 12:43
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