fnatic became the final team to make it to the Legends Stage after defeating 9z with a 2-0 scoreline. Their path to the Legends Stage started convincingly with two wins against Cloud9 and OG before the European combine struggled in the BO3 games, losing to MOUZ and Outsiders to join the 2-2 pool.
After making the most of their final chance against 9z, HLTV.org spoke with Major debutant Dion “FASHR” Derksen to touch on his feelings after playing in front of a crowd for the first time. “The first day we came here, they were already going crazy in the first game,” he told HLTV. “It was my first time playing for a crowd and it felt amazing, I want to do it more!”
FASHR enjoyed his first experience of playing on stage
The rifler spoke on his inconsistent individual form and the measures he is taking to become a more stable player, while also touching on the team’s expectations in the Legends Stage.
“We showed at Pro League that we could play well against top five teams and we showed it at the RMR,” said the 26-year-old. “If the draw is a bit in our favor, we could make it to the quarters, but we have to see where we go.”
Read the full interview below:
It’s your first Major and you made it through to the Legends Stage. I bet you’re feeling pretty good right now!
Yeah, I’m feeling amazing. My first Major, in Brazil, and then making it to the Legends Stage? It feels really amazing.
You mention being in Brazil. What’s it like for you to be here, in this atmosphere?
The first day we came here, they were already going crazy in the first game. I’m a big football supporter, so I know about the crowds there, in Brazil this is like another level. It gives us really a lot of energy, especially when they’re cheering for you. You can’t really hear it on stage, but you can still hear it, if you know what I mean. It was my first time playing for a crowd and it felt amazing, I want to do it more!
Let’s jump into the matches a bit and what you’ve done here so far. You had a really strong start, won the two best-of-ones, but then lost two best-of-threes. What was that little extra you were missing in the first BO3s?
Against MOUZ, the 2-0 game, we really had an off day. Nobody was feeling that great, we were all tired and the jet lag was kicking in a bit. The communication was just not there, team play was not there, everything that could go wrong went wrong. We played Inferno really well, actually, so it was kind of weird because we had two bad maps and a really good one — the best of the tournament for us, so far. So yeah, we just had to reset after the game.
Then we played the 2-1 game against Outsiders. We picked Overpass and were really confident on it, but then we lost 0-15. It was a bit like with MOUZ, the energy wasn’t really there, the communication wasn’t there, the team play. After that we had a meeting and we said ‘if we want to make it to the Legends Stage we need to step up now,’ and I think we did against 9z.
We went through the games and thought like, ‘OK, there’s a gap here, a gap there,’ but in the game it just didn’t happen. Jame was destroying us
Outsiders aren’t particularly known for Overpass, but they’re picking it now and playing it well. What was your preparation going into it?
We felt like we had a really good T-side on Overpass because if you see Pro League, we played it a lot and always got like seven or eight rounds. We went through the games and thought like, ‘OK, there’s a gap here, a gap there,’ but in the game it just didn’t happen. Jame was destroying us. It’s good, so that we can work on it for the Legends Stage because we thought our Overpass was decent. But yeah, they just played really well, nothing else to say.
How about the game against 9z, it was the final chance to make it out of the Challengers Stage alive. They were not one of the favorites here, so were you confident that this was the day you were going to make it?
Yeah, I think we were pretty confident against them. When we went over the anti-strat against them I felt like we had a good understand of where the gaps would be, where they would play, how they play together, and I think that it especially showed on the CT side of the Mirage game.
Nuke was a bit rough because we went 3-0 and were like ‘OK, we’ll get seven or eight T-side rounds,’ but then it was a 5-10 half and I was so happy with five rounds in the end. We won 16-14, so those five rounds helped. We were a bit surprised, I think, because the energy and the team play from Mirage wasn’t there again on Nuke. So we were like, ‘ah, what’s happening?’ I’m happy we were able to perform on the CT side and close out the game.
I’m not there yet, I want to improve more, and time will tell if I can do it
Going back to the RMR, you talked about adapting to the team, having to learn new roles and play a different way than you used to. Where are you at now, are you finding your place?
In the two weeks after the RMR I watched a lot of my demos because I just didn’t feel like the energy and the play I brought were good enough. The coach is helping me a lot with it, giving me straightforward constructive criticism which I take in very well. I just work as hard as I can and make sure my aim is on point so that I can get out of certain situations.
I had some sloppy maps at the Major, but also some great ones and I’m showing the potential I have. Especially on Mirage, a map I was struggling a lot on, and I think against 9z I showed that I’m improving. I’m not there yet, I want to improve more, and time will tell if I can do it.
You reached your first goal, what are your expectations now going into the Legends Stage? It’ll be a whole new level now with the best teams in the world, what do you want to get out of it?
The experience of playing in front of the crowd, and we should aim at least to reach the quarters. We showed at Pro League that we could play well against top five teams and we showed it at the RMR. We should have won against FaZe, in my opinion, we lost in overtime and played some really good teams. This stage, as well, we played four top 15 teams, so basically we played a Legends Stage already.
If the draw is a bit in our favor, we could make it to the quarters, but we have to see where we go. We have the benefit of playing the Challengers Stage, we played five games already and are warmed up. We’re used to the setup, the crowd, and I think it could give us the advantage in the early games.
You’re opening against NIP. How do you feel about that initial match-up?
We beat them 2-0 at Pro League, but that was without Aleksib. They looked really strong at the RMR with Aleksib, so let’s see how they improve during their time at the Major. I think we’ll put in all of the work needed to beat them again. That would be a nice 1-0 start again, it’s a best-of-one so it could go our way if we win both pistols.
On a fun note, your .cfg was trending because of some unusual binds. How come you have such particular binds?
I’m playing games since I’m three years old and my dad had these settings. When you start playing on your dad’s lap you just copy what he has because he tells you ‘this is to move forward, this is to jump.’ You don’t know any better until you start playing with other players and they’re like, ‘what the hell are you doing? you’re supposed to walk with WASD.’ I never learned that, so I didn’t know any better!
So it was like from the old days, from when your dad played…
Yeah, inverted mouse and everything! I don’t know any better, so I’m used to these settings.
You don’t know any better until you start playing with other players and they’re like, ‘what the hell are you doing? you’re supposed to walk with WASD’
You’ve had a pretty hard road to the Legends Stage, three of the five teams you played made it along with you and two were eliminated in the last day. What’s the mood regarding the journey you’ve had here so far?
The mood in general is great, even though we lost to MOUZ and Outsiders we had some very good talks after the games. We’re five individuals that are pretty mature, we can tell each other ‘I think you should have done this or that,’ not in an offensive way but everyone is really great at taking criticism and that’s how you improve. The mood in general is pretty chill and we’re confident.