At last we bring to your attention the long-expected interview with the most famous Counter Strike player of the Russian team EYEsports and the national team of Russia. As you have guessed, today the hero of our program is a cheerful and positive Alexander "xek" Zubkov, who answered all important questions that have worried the local population for many months.
LumeNation: Tell me, for which team do you play and how long have you been playing for it?
xek: Hello! Now I am playing for EYEsports within a year. Before I played also with the same people about 2 years ago, but under different names of teams (only one or two gamers were changed, and once I was changed).
At the end of December of the last year two players Xenitron and Dingo left EYEsports in Virtus.pro. What do you think about it?
So, they chose the team with the best conditions at that moment, including the fact, that we played with the last champions very badly; we didn’t have motivation to train and to win. May be, every player made the same.
How successfully did Flatra и Edik enter the team after Vanya and Denis had left?
The situation was a little opposite. Flatra and edik were first to contact with eyesports managers and began to form the team. After ex they took me and redman. Everybody entered the team well, as we have known, and played with each other for a long time.
You performed at the qualifying round Asus Winter 2009 not very well, took the second place and lost at the Final to the forZe. What happened at this game, as I remember you have gone easily till the Final?
Financial resources don’t allow us to gather in the club and that’s why we play together at home. Ex had internet problems (there is little ping at evenings) almost all the time we were training. Because of it we didn’t manage to play with European teams properly, we had either not to play at all or play with Russian players. Naturally in the evening of qualifying rounds online exe’s internet flopped, he played the first two cards with a large ping (100-120), and then we played the third card with replacement, because his ping went up till 150 and it was impossible to play.
Recently the new tournament DTS-Cup 2009 had been announced with prize money of 26000$. Did you hear about it, and what plans do you have for this tournament? I also want to know about plans of your team for the coming tournament KODE5 2009?
Probably we’ll go, if managers find money for the journey or the team doesn’t break up or somebody is fired. It also concerns KODE5.
Let’s talk about you. Sasha, tell me, what are you doing apart from e-sports? Study, some other hobbies? Do you have probably another job?
I’am the third-year student of Russian University of Peoples’ Friendship at the engineering faculty. I don’t like to study very much, though some subjects are rather interesting. I like to go to the cinema, sometimes I just walk with my friends. This summer I found time to go skating and to play hockey.
Does e-sports interferes with your private life? And how do your close people treat your hobby?
Earlier it interfered with my plans, when everybody had much more wish and motivation to play and train, but now it’s difficult as earlier to gather from 4 p.m and play pcv till 11 p.m., train and invent something new. Now I like more only championships and winning at them, than the game itself. My close people treat my hobby badly, as it is considered to be foolish and useless. I think the same, in principle, because in Russia you cannot earn stable money. I play only, because I like it.
Do you define some definite goals before yourself? Do you have dreams, connected, for example, with the champion's title at WCG or ESWC?
Yeah, it would be cool to win WCG and ESWC, and I can do it in principle, if I exert myself in game for 100%, but now I have big problems with it.
Tell me, what role do you play in the team?
So, I ran into the arcade and died, then sat at positions and died also. :) Sometimes I take AWP and then died, but a little rarely.
But, if I had luck, I kill in the arcade and even when I sit at positions. And then we usually win the championship. :)
As for you, do you prefer to play offline or online? What advantages and disadvantages can you note in two completely different places?
Who knows, how I play, will definitely say, that I play offline worse than online. I have one terribly awful reason for this. Because of that I don’t have very good eyesight, actually since my childhood and since the time I have begun to play, I had to sit very closely to the monitor, that’s why specific style of sitting by the computer has been made: I move the keyboard closely to the monitor and put hands completely on the table.
Everything had been all right probably till 2006, I played online excellently and I feel at home there, and so happened on LAN, there was no difference for me, besides that it is more quite to play at home than at the championship.
I played even not badly at many Asus tournaments, that were held in ideal and comfortable for me club flashback :), there were comfortable tables and crt monitors.
But then may be in 2007 liquid crystal monitors were installed in clubs, and they were not only appropriate for games, but also they spoil eyesight very much. But the majority of clubs saw advantages, saying, that they occupy less place than CRT monitors and they were in a hurry to place them in the club together with too little tables in order to place as much as possible computers (the striking example is 4game club).
Small tables, where it’s hard to keep hands, and awful liquid crystal monitors with huge stand, to which I can not move the keyboard up, affect my game very much. Since then I have shown the normal level only online, but I haven’t invented yet the way how to sit comfortably for 100% in the 4game. Mainly, it is my fault, probably with liquid crystal monitors arrival I should someway change my sitting habit, learn to hold my hands suspended, but it will take, may be, months to change the way I have played during many years, but I don’t have time, as championships are held one by one almost every month.
Many African runners have run barefooted until now, it’s late evidently to lose the habit and begin to wear shoes, as contests are held permanently, and the force of habit has effect within many years, though these runners are likely to run better in shoes.
I have only to enjoy non-prochampionships in click-net club, where there are such large tables and normal monitors as there had been in flash-back club some time ago, and the scene in 4game, you should show something in order to get to this scene.
As for me, it is the only reason for my such bad performances within 1,5-2 years, it makes me sick, when I play LAN not like as online and I don’t make frags that I must do.
I want to say also about chits online: I used some bad programs only 3 or 4 times in my life, and it was may be 3-4 years ago, if not more. I used them, because somebody played unfairly against me and I didn’t want to put up with it.
Out of these 3-4 times I was caught two times, because I don’t know how to hide it. Even somewhere chit-movies were made, and that’s why my reputation was spoiled in the circle of Swedes, because I was playing against them.
I want to ask you a question as the player of our National team. Tell me, how do the games for the National team and the games for your own team differ from each other?
So, I can compare this game in mix and in the team. In the team you are responsible before your teammates, I have the feeling that you are a team and not everything depends only on you that you should play together and so on.
In the mix you can play as you want, nothing keeps you, and it’s easier for you to play here, you can show everything you (not your team) are capable for. In this respect it’s difficult for aggressive players to play in the team, because if you one or several times go into the arcade and die, you will hold the bag to your teammates, they become angry and tell you that you shouldn’t die and etc. As a result I should often hear and adjust to, and finally there is no sense in my aggressive style, and I have to play in such a way, to which I am not accustomed to. Actually, it’s the reason for my bad play in the team. I can play well without running into the arcade. The main reason for my bad play in the team is disclosed in the question, I have mentioned above, taking into account that I play for the team only LAN.
The majority of players are thought to play not seriously for the National team. How can you comment the situation?
When you play against weak players it’s difficult for all players to treat the game seriously. In this case you play more relaxed.
And this year the captain is redman, last year LeX was a captain, who, you might say, actually treats everything seriously, and he makes everybody treat the game seriously unlike redman.
Let’s return to your game with forZe. You lost the game against them in the Final of qualifying rounds online, but won at LAN. What is the reason for it? Probably, you didn’t aspire to disclose all your cards in the first game and saved them for the final part of the game. Or is there another reason for it?
So, I wrote about the Final in the question above, and I can say about the play LAN, that we lacked some tactical actions during the game to win the first card and not to strain ourselves till the next two cards. We just couldn’t understand that we should play a little bit different on the train, and we tried constantly primitively to use our poor range of tactics, going out into the open bombplant and trying to shoot 2 AWP to the distance of Kalashnikov.
After EYEsports won the game with forZe, you had got into the team k23, with which you lost two cards with funny score. What happened to you then and what were you short of?
Mainly, I was short of strength, our game with forZe lasted, probable, about 5-6 hours in connection with large delays and computer problems. May be, if we had won on two cards, not three ones, we would have had more strength. Personally, I didn’t kill in side and back no more in the game with k23 at 12 o’clock at night.
What is happening now in the team after not very successful performance at Asus Winter 2009?
Nothing is happening now, only one day has gone since then, probably somebody will be fired as always or somebody will forget about his career in CS.
How can you comment the fact, that actually all favorites of this tournament, including EYEsports, didn’t manage to enter the semifinal and many teams were disqualified out of its earlier stage?
I have no idea, this Asus turned out to be very strange, though it is the upper net, where PinCho was, and it is much easier the lower one, all the same there are many unexpected results even there. May be, it’s more difficult to play for big names at new Windows Vista, I don’t know.
How, where and according to which schedule do usually train?
At home, 3-4 times a week, since 7 till 11 o’clock p.m., if somebody’s internet doesn’t flop and everybody can play.
Do your usual trainings differ from preparation for the definite tournament? May be, you toughen the schedule before the important event?
Yes, before Asus we trained a little bit more, and we spent even two days before the championship in 4game, that we hadn’t done for a long period of time. But in connection with training we didn’t rack our brains much over the cardtactics, we play, mainly, PCW with different teams.
Did you sometimes feel that you want to give up everything on a nice day and to busy yourself with something else?
While I am learning now, I doubt, whether I can find time for something else, probably when I finish my study, this wish will appear.
Can the financing of EYEsports afford your trips to the foreign events?
No. Today is the world financial crisis.
Sasha, thank you for your interview. I wish you and your team a lot of success, and in the end do you want to say your last word or give somebody your regards?
Thanks for the interview. I want to give my regards to mom and dad.