Astralis confirm JUGi signing
The 23-year-old joins Astralis on a free transfer after being released by North last month, and increases the roster to six players, with Patrick "es3tag" Hansen due to join the team once his Heroic contract runs out, at the end of June.
JUGi has already taken part in a practice session with his new teammates, in which he "adapted and contributed as we expected", according to team coach Danny "zonic" Sørensen. He is no stranger to Astralis' methodology, having played some of his best Counter-Strike under Heroic (average 1.17 rating) when both teams were owned by RFRSH Entertainment.
He struggled to produce the same level of form in his next two teams, OpTic and North, the latter of which moved him to the bench in January to make way for Mathias "MSL" Lauridsen. Now that he is once again working with the same performance team, JUGi is hoping to rediscover his spark and prove his doubters wrong.
"It feels like coming home," JUGi told Astralis' website. "To be honest, I was really nervous, but the second I stepped into the office, everything felt just right. The group has grown a lot, but I know most of the guys around the team, I know the culture and I know what is expected of me - on and off the server. I’ve had some great times here and being able to wear the jersey with the red star on the chest is just… It’s a pressure, it’s humbling and it’s motivating as nothing else!
"I’ve not been as consistent in my performance as I want to be, but I know what I can do under the right conditions and luckily so do Kasper Hvidt and Danny. Also, I will play with a group of incredibly skilled players on a team where the combined performance is always in focus, which is something I’ve missed at times."
Kasper Hvidt, Astralis' Director of Sports, admits that these changes may lead to "fluctuating results" at first, but stresses that the end goal is to build "an even stronger Astralis now and in the many years to come." He also adds that the organisation wants to have two players who can fill every role in the team.
JUGi could make his first official appearance for Astralis in DreamHack Masters Spring, which will kick off in just a week's time. Later this month, the Danish giants, who returned to the No.1 spot in the world rankings last week, will also compete in the BLAST Premier Spring Europe Showdown, in which four spots in the European Finals will be on offer.
Astralis now have:
Danny "zonic" Sørensen (coach)
Patrick "es3tag" Hansen (from July 1)