“Three wins in as many matches, it’s a perfect start to the season for Vitality in the LEC : does that correspond to what you do in training?
I didn’t expect us to start so well. The results in scrims weren’t bad, rather irregular. Our opponents this opening week were teams within our reach, but I expected us to win one, maybe two games, because it was difficult to anticipate how we were going to perform. Especially with two players who have very rarely played on stage. In the end, they were amazing.
Everything was not perfect, against Fnatic in particular: did this snatch success give you confidence for the following matches?
I’m not sure, precisely because it was difficult. We had a hard draft to run, we knew it. But we still showed a lot of discipline and that’s probably the reason why it’s not yet that in training. In scrims, we are too aggressive. In official matches, we were able to remain methodical, agreeing to let goals slip away when arguing about them could make us lose the game instantly, for example. We waited for errors. However, it showed us that we could play well on stage.
Are you trying too hard to test your limits by scrims ?
It’s part of training, but it can be bad not to be serious enough, not to rework the fundamentals like resets, impose a rhythm… If you don’t respect that, you can get punished in an official match where a mistake can cost you the game.
We hear a lot about Yang-Bo “Bo” Zhou, your Chinese jungler, very good at the start: what do you think of him, personally?
He is incredible. Technically of course but he is also very intelligent. Sometimes he’s a little too aggressive, but he’s so good at communicating what we have to do around the objectives: if we have to back down, engage the opposing team… Of course the communication is still quite simple, short, precise, so that we can understand each other, but he and Photon (Gyu-tae Kyeong, the South Korean top laner, also a newcomer this season) learn quickly.
We have plenty of room for improvement in this regard, even if things are already going well. Bo talks a lot, always asks what is expected of him, if we need help… He’s almost a rookie, everyone talks about him, yet he has the discipline not to get carried away by this craze. He is not telling us: I want to carry, I want to carry ” endlessly. He’s very mature and that’s encouraging.
“Bo is not infallible, it’s not the resurrection of Christ, but he is very strong and I hope he will continue this momentum with us”.
Does it impress you?
Obviously. I don’t think I’ve ever played with someone as talented as Bo. And he hasn’t finished surprising. He is not infallible, it is not the resurrection of Christ, but he is very strong and I hope he will continue in this way with us.
I come back to the communication between you: to make yourself understood, do you use keywords for example?…
Specific expressions are used: base », « preparation of the dragon », « take the vision », « come with me “… When Bo and Photon need information, it’s the same: ” where is the jungler », « I fight on top “, for example. We understand each other well and things are getting better and better. Even if with Perkz (Luka Perkovic, mid laner and captain) and neon (Matus Jakubcik, adc), we know that we should not use words that are too complicated for them and their current English. But if that’s the case, when it happens to us, they immediately ask for the meaning and remember it for the next time. Those are ” fast learners “.
And you, how do you feel in this new environment?
I like it! Perkz is a very funny person, I get on well with Neon, Bo, Photon, the technical staff too… We sometimes tilt in training of course, but it’s not difficult to calm down. The balance is good, so far so good.
You came to play around Bo, at the center of the project: how is it going for you on this level? We know that you are a support that likes to accompany its jungler…
At the moment it’s not the easiest, there are a lot of remote supports in the meta and usually they stay glued to their adcs. I’m still learning to play around Bo, it’s obviously harder when he takes Sejuani since you can’t move around the map as a duo to destroy everything. But he likes to play aggressive champions and it allows me to take Leona, Nautilus, to help him settle in the game, take the objectives… Our synergy is not yet perfectly developed, we still have to learn each other, but it’s getting better every day. He plays well, but he also listens, he knows how to say no to things he doesn’t like… It’s important (smile).
There is reason to be optimistic for Vitality after these first three days…
Certainly. We didn’t play perfectly this weekend and Monday, but with two Asian players new to Europe and struggling to communicate well, it’s a good start. It will be necessary to confirm against the best teams on paper, G2, KOI, but I think we will have a chance against them. This Vitality still has a lot of room for improvement, too…”