The Astralis CS:GO team will have to use their coach Danny ‘zonic’ Sørensen for their first match at IEM Oakland due to health issues for their star player Nicolai ‘device’ Reedtz.
The Danish team has been drawn in Group A at the $300,000 event and will face the Swedes of NiP in their first match of the tournament.
The ELEAGUE Major: Atlanta 2017 champions will be looking to get back to their winning ways, having not won a tournament since since the IEM XI World Championship in March.
However, their chances have taken a significant knock with the announcement of device missing at least one match due to sickness.
The team’s AWPer and star player is arguably the most important factor in their success and his absence will undoubtedly hit them hard.
The undisclosed illness has prevented the 22 year old from travelling to the tournament, meaning that zonic will have to fill in for him the first match. However, the organization says that device should be back in time for the Cloud9 game as long as there are no delays.
If there are no delays, devve will be ready to play in time for the second game vs. @Cloud9.
— Astralis (@astralisgg) November 14, 2017
Zonic was one of the most successful Danish Counter-Strike 1.6 players in history. The 31 year old won a number of big international tournaments including WCG 2008 and WEM 2008.
He retired from competitive Counter-Strike in 2012 but returned to the professional scene as a CS:GO coach in 2015.
He has helped the Astralis players to a number of international tournament wins, and even stepped in as a player for the ESL One: Cologne 2016 Major when another player, Peter ‘dupreeh’ Rothmann fell ill.
He helped the team achieve legend status with a 5th-8th finish but has not played the game actively since.
This will be the veteran’s first game of Counter-Strike on LAN at the professional level since July 2017, and he will be facing two of his biggest Counter-Strike: 1.6 rivals in fellow veterans Patrik ‘f0rest’ Lindberg and Christopher ‘GeT_RiGhT’ Alesund.