Xyp9x to play with Astralis Talent following Altekz call-up
The news of the two players switching positions comes one week after Astralis missed out on earning a berth to the upcoming BLAST.tv Paris Major, which runs from May 8-21.
The Danish quintet posted a lackluster 1-3 record during their time at the French Major's Europe RMR, suffering an 0-2 defeat to Ninjas in Pyjamas in the elimination game, which will force the roster to watch back-to-back Majors from the sidelines.
Xyp9x has been a part of Astralis since the organization was founded in January 2016, although his overall tenure with the roster dates back to 2014, when he joined the Dignitas banner alongside teammates Nicolai "device" Reedtz and Peter "dupreeh" Rasmussen.
Xyp9x's most fruitful stint came during the aforementioned seven-year partnership with Astralis, whom he helped win four Major championships — three of which were consecutive victories — alongside 15 other Big Event trophies, including IEM Katowice 2017 and 2019.
Regardless, things have slowed down in recent times and Astralis are no longer the world leaders they once were. The Danish troupe have even crashed out of consecutive Major cycles, missing out on the IEM Rio and BLAST.tv Paris Majors.
Too few points on the ESL World Ranking also forced the squad to sit out IEM Katowice, the first Big Event of 2023. Their latest strong showing at a tier-one LAN now dates back to IEM Cologne, in July 2022, where they finished in 3rd-4th place.
Astralis Talent, meanwhile, have been going from strength to strength, picking up victories at domestic events like SDTV Invitational and POWER Ligaen, as well as taking down Copenhagen Flames and GamerLegion en route to a first-place finish at CCT North Europe Series 4.
Astralis will hope that Xyp9x's transfer to the academy roster "for the coming period" will further elevate their developmental team's play, as the 27-year-old will bring with him years' worth of tier-one experience and an abundance of knowledge to pass down to his more inexperienced peers.
"Throughout 2023, Altekz has been performing on a consistent, high level, and he is currently one of the most talented players in his role," commented Kasper Hvidt, Astralis' Director of Sports. "As such, and in continuation of the first team coaches' desire to work with him in the coming period, we have had a good dialogue with Xyp9x, who has agreed to help the talent team."
Xyp9x added his part via a press release on Astralis' website."I am still super disappointed that we missed the qualification for the Major... an organization like Astralis must participate in all Majors and ultimately be able to compete for the title," he said.
"When we miss this opportunity for the second time in a row, it's clear we have to look at all options. I know the game and know how I contribute, but I'm also Astralis to the core and will do what it takes to move us forward.
"People close to me know that I am a team player, and even though I am now taking a break from the A team, I will always be ready to help the organization and the team that I have been a part of since the very beginning.
"There are many talented players on the Talent team, and I look forward to helping them. I hope, of course, that my experience and knowledge from countless large international tournaments can lift the players even [more]."
Astralis will play with the following roster for now:
Whilst Astralis Talent will play with: