GuardiaN: "I'm ready to return"
After working on his individual form, the Slovakian AWPer announced his plans to return to competition, adding that he has "unfinished business in Counter-Strike".
Ladislav "GuardiaN" Kovács is one of the most decorated players in CS:GO, having eight MVP medals and six Top 20 placings to his name. The 29-year-old found success with Natus Vincere in 2013-2017, as well as FaZe in 2017-2019, lifting 17 notable LAN trophies in the process - but the Major one is still eluding him.
His return to Natus Vincere at the end of 2019 was short-lived, as the sniper's poor individual form saw him replaced by Ilya "Perfecto" Zalutskiy in just four months. After spending almost a quarter of the year on the sidelines, GuardiaN announced in a column for Dexerto that he is "ready to return to competing in CS:GO at the highest level".
GuardiaN shared that he has been working on his individual game "non-stop", admitting that it was mostly a psychological battle, with the freedom provided by FPL helping him become comfortable with the AWP again. Talking about his current form, he compares it to the "ELEAGUE Boston Major - IEM Katowice 2018 era", two top-tier events GuardiaN finished with a 1.24 and 1.18 rating, respectively.
"After watching the ‘online era’ of Counter-Strike unfold before me, I’m seeing mistakes being made at the highest level. Mistakes that I know I wouldn’t make", GuardiaN wrote. "Saying that, I’m not expecting to come back and be the most consistent fragger on a team. But with the right team, I know that I can fill the void as a top-tier AWPer and grind to become one of the best snipers in CS:GO again."
Playing Counter-Strike every day for the last six months has got GuardiaN to a level "comparable to my peak with FaZe", according to him. The veteran AWPer says he will not jump at the first chance to play again as he is "waiting for the right opportunity to arise."
The Slovakian also addressed his "Major curse" — coming up short in three different grand finals —, and concluded by saying he isn't coming back just to "earn a paycheck", but to deal with his unfinished business. "I'm hungrier than ever; and I feel like with the right team, I can finally claim the elusive Major trophy and it will no longer be a case of 'the one that got away'".