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Post i61 Roster Shuffles

by Alex HarrisSeptember 1, 2017
Post i61 Roster Shuffles

Live updates will be posted below, as and when the information within the article becomes outdated, or if any other interesting roster developments take place. All organisations were reached out to for a comment, some chose not to.

Update 18:30 BST, 11th September

Endpoint have announced a major roster overhaul, bringing in Yannick ‘yNc’ Van Boven, Dion ‘FASHR’ Derksen and Tramaine Stan1ey Stanley. There is a massive investment into the team, as they will be contracted until summer 2018 and will have a team house in the UK. Read more here.

CeX gaming have just tweeted that the team’s final player will be Dom ‘dOMM’ Sulcas, following Danceyz and hemzk9 leaving the roster just over a week ago. dOMM was part of the squad who represented Radix during their epic.LAN winning campaign in mid June of this year. With the next epic.LAN, epic.22, coming next month he will be hoping to repeat his success with his new lineup. The team also have the finals of the ESL UK Premiership coming up, next week at EGX, following CeX’s first place finish in the group stages. We reached out to CeX for a comment, which will be included below upon reception.

Finally, London Lynx have completely revamped their CS:GO roster, keeping only their ingame leader Zain ‘TroubleN‘ Panjwani. The players: Jake ‘jadam‘ Adams, Steven ‘Snakey‘ Dang and Ricky ‘MajorLeeMessedUp‘ Wong were all removed from the roster. They are replaced by veteran AWPer Luke ‘fearLess‘ Morris, young guns Nick ‘nK‘ Feeney and Man Ho ‘mrhui‘ Hui and former London Lynx secondary-entry Usman ‘cybah‘ Ashraf. Read more here.

Update 16:00 BST, 8th September

Infused have just announced their new CS:GO roster ahead of Season 2 of the Gfinity Elite Series, with intentions of qualifying for the top 4 spots this time round. New players Zaki ‘Danceyz’ Dance from CeX and George ‘ZED’ Bear, have been brought in to replace the outgoing pair of Ross Trials’ Campbell and former ingame leader of the side James redSNK’ Littlewood. Moving forwards, ZED will be taking on the ingame leading role, with Danceyz taking the AWP away from Aaron Fre1′ Frei, thus leaving him to rifle – his preferred role, according to their coach Neil ‘Neil_M’ Murphy. We reached out, but the organisation declined to comment. Read more here.

Update 8:30 BST, 7th September

Vexed make shock changes, removing sheekey, shaney and JT.

New statement from Stuart McAllister, the owner of NSG, on their recent roster changes.

“Sam aka Diabl0 has decided to step down as a player within NSG. He’s looking at more of a coaching role within the organisation. We’ve sat down and had a conversation as a team and ultimately need someone who is looking long term. The team moral is high and everyone seems to be very motivated.”

Update 00:30 BST, 6th September

The Goose House have now filled their final roster spot with Tom ‘tamsteR’ Barrett, following the removal of Eddie. The experienced player has represented a range of organisations including ProjectX and uFrag Gaming. The organisation gave the following statement:

“After a successful run at Insomnia we were sad to hear that Eddie would be stepping down from the team. He has been an integral part of TGH since the very beginning so we would like to thank him for his time with us and wish him all the best. Now going forward we have picked up the experienced and very talented Tom “Tamster” Barret to the roster. Tamster is a talented player and we are looking forward to seeing him play under The Goose House.”

Update 00:00 BST, 4th September

Method from the Gfinity Elite Series have announced two high profile pick-ups, following the removal of Brandon ‘weber’ Weber and Tramaine ‘stan1ey’ Stanley from their starting roster. They will be replaced by the experienced pair, Joey ‘CRUC1AL’ Steusel and Kia ‘Surreal’ Man. Both players were playing in the North American ESEA Pro League last season, representing Splyce and Complexity Gaming respectively. Not long ago, Method were considered the best side in the UK, but following on from a gradual decline in results, the team eventually chose to make changes. The new additions definitely bring alot of extra firepower to their Gfinity Elite Series campaign and should aid Method in securing a better placing than their lackluster 7th place during season one.

Update 19:00 BST, 2nd September

Nuclear Storm Gaming, a team who finished 13th-16th at i61, have just announced that they are currently looking for one, following Sam ‘diabl0’ Biden transitioning to a coaching role within the team. It has become apparent that this is due to his own personal reasons and we wish him the best of luck in dealing with these. Mitchell ‘Ducky’ Robertson has tweeted that the team are currently trialing potential fifths. A statement from the team is to come.

Original Article

A number of surprising results and the usual post-LAN woes have sent the UK scene into yet another manic shuffling of rosters. With teams such as Impulse Gaming and Barrage not even making it to the top 16 at i61, and the Gfinity Elite Series coming to a close for all of the UK teams, changes were inevitable. Although this article will focus mainly on teams and organisations looking for players, a few notable players who are currently looking for teams will also be included.

CeX have been the team on the tip of everybody’s tongues for the last few months, due to their great teamplay and strong 2nd place finish in UK Masters, as well as 3rd at i61. Just over a month ago, Andrew ‘resu’ Robson was moved to a coaching role in the team, due to poor individual performances, being replaced by Zaki ‘Danceyz’ Dance on the starting roster. However, CeX announced via twitter that both Jonas ‘hemzk9’ Rantamäki and Danceyz will be leaving the team. CeX declined to comment, but pure speculation suggests that both players may be on their way to a team in the Gfinity Elite Series.

IGI Esports greatly surprised the UK scene with a 5th/6th place finish at i61. The team had been slowly grinding since the previous iSeries and hadn’t changed roster in nearly 6 months. However, despite their strong finish, the team folded due to personal commitments of various players. Man-Ho ‘MRHUI’ Hui and Nick ‘NK’ Feeney both gave big individual performances at i61 and are LFT, alongside their former teammates Ryan ‘REDGARZ’ Edgar and Ryan ‘DOX’ Young. Meanwhile, Tayler ‘TAYLERDOODLE’ O’Boyle has decided to explore coaching opportunities. However, the organisation is keen to bounce back and pick up a roster of a similar caliber. Here is what James ‘CooKie’ Cook, the owner of IGI Esports, had to say about the future of IGI eSports within Counter Strike:

“The type of team we want [to pick up] has to be able to achieve similar goals [to] our i61 squad, if not surpass those goals. [Their] mentality is also key, the willingness to improve as a team and get along. Stability is essential in any team and if that’s not there then it’s a difficult task to achieve the goals put in front of you.”

London Lynx recently picked up the young talent Jake ‘jadam’ Adams and looked ready to take a high placing at iSeries, however finished the event placing lower than their previous insomnia appearance. In the following days Usman ‘cybahh’ Ashraf chose to step down from the roster. The organisation has since asked for players and coaches interested in joining the team to contact them. Cybahh is actively looking for a new team. Andrew ‘andyy’ Smith, the founder of London LYNX had the following to say:

“With the news that cybah recently stepped down from our csgo team, we’re looking to replace him with another experienced individual. This player should ideally be a entry fragger, with the ability to be aggressive and confident against the top of the UK CSGO scene. We’re willing to fund this individual on the same levels we do with the rest of the team. For more details, please DM directly at our twitter @London_LYNX

Another team coming off of the back of a highly successful i61 campaign are The Goose House. The team formerly coached by Luke ‘fearLess’ Morris, have been steadily rising the ranks within the UK scene. Despite a close loss to IGI Esports in the upper bracket, they beat both Impulse Gaming and Nuclear Storm Gaming in the lower bracket to finish the event at 7th/8th. Unfortunately, due to university commitments, Eddie ‘Eddie’ Fraser has stepped down from the roster after representing the team for over a year and a half. The team are currently looking for one player.

The Gfinity Elite Series team Reason Gaming who would have hoped for a better placing, finishing the tournament dead last. The ingame leader for the side, Bradley ‘HoodluM’ Ratcliff, consistently lacked confidence and chose to leave the team at the end of the season. The team began to play with Ben ‘r0m’ Smith as a direct replacement, while competing in other tournaments, such as UK Masters. However, after a trial period of a few weeks, the team decided he didn’t provide the same level of tactical prowess inside of the server, as he did outside of it. Also, Scott ‘kARMApangya’ Campbell has stepped down from the starting roster and will be a substitute. When asked about the roster changes, the owner of Reason Gaming, Adam ‘Blanks’ Heath, said:

“Brad worked magic with the team and although it may not reflect in our Elite Series results, looking at our UK Premiership and UK Masters seasons you can see the impact he had. As for Scott, although he’s not leaving us completely … he adopts a place on the subs bench, it will be a shame to not have him in the starting lineup.”

Endpoint have seen a flurry of disjointed roster changes, leaving only Max ‘MiGHTYMAX’ Heath, their highest rated player (1.04 HLTV rating 2.0), on the roster. This is also likely due to their disappointing 6th place finish at the Gfinity Elite Series, winning only one week out of seven. A distinct lack of rumours seem to be surrounding the future of the team and Endpoint management are yet to comment on the situation.

Finally, a few highly esteemed players of the the UK scene are currently looking for teams. To begin with, the ex-Endpoint players: James ‘Kryptix’ Affleck, Ian ‘Immi’ Harding and Charlie ‘pickles’ Pickles, are all currently looking for team. It is unknown where these players are set to go. Also, Brandon ‘weber’ Weber is no longer part of the Method team, quite possibly as a result of their 7th place finish at Gfinity. However, the most exciting news is the return of the aforementioned ex-coach of The Goose House, fearLess, to being a player. fearLess was the primary AWPer of the old EZSKINS line up and with it folding, took a step away from competitive play due to commitments outside of gaming.

These roster changes are anything but the end of what is likely to be a turbulent fortnight for UK Counter Strike. However, with the roster lock for the second season of the Gfinity Elite Series set for the 17th of September, rosters should start to slowly cement themselves, especially among the upper echelons of the scene. Thank you to everyone who gave comments and tip-offs surrounding the future rosters and updates will be posted below.

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About The Author
Alex Harris

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