On Friday, May 3rd, Elevate shocked many when they won their match-up against Midnight at CWL London. Doubters pointed to the fact that the team’s two French players, Breszy and Wailers don’t speak English as a first language. I talked to the team’s coach, Ricky Atura to get an inside look at how the team has prepared with short notice, a fresh team, and a language barrier.
Q: How has the transition been for the team after having been acquired from Excelerate not too long ago?
Ricky: The transition was smoother than expected. We honestly doubted Breszy would be able to pick up on English as fast as he did. Surprisingly enough it only took about a week of practice and after that, the communication, the flow of the map, everything was the same as if we just picked up another North American player
Q: How has the team dealt with the language difference? Has it affected preparations?
Ricky: This whole transition wasn’t as bad mainly due to Wailers knowing English very well and being able to translate and help Breszy on anything he couldn’t understand already which set us up to just focus on our gameplay.
Q: How important is it that the French guys are living in America for all of this?
Ricky: Living in the U.S. is a huge thing for Wailers and Breszy mainly due to connection issues they would face playing on a consistent 200+ ping, especially in a game like this is practically unplayable. Secondly, the time zones are so different this past week we’ve been finishing scrims at 11pm/12am EST and for Paul in France that’s 5am/6am. I respect him for all the effort he put in. He didn’t complain once, no matter how late we played. He just wanted to improve and make us the best team we can be.
Q: From a coaching perspective, what are some keys to success at CWL London?
Ricky: I believe the main keys to success should always be a positive mindset and 2nd Drive. We’re a new team and everybody’s been doubting us. There shouldn’t be any fear this event, just play at the level we know we’re capable of. Everybody has a “win now, we should never lose” mentality in scrims when in reality losing is the next best thing you can do to fix the mistakes you’ve been making to play at your best come event time.
Q: What are some of your goals going forward?
Ricky: We want to win an event and to make the Pro League Playoffs after a 1-6 start to the year, that’d be a crazy comeback story.
Stay tuned to watch Elevate continue their run at CWL London. Never count those boys from the EU out. They’re ready to play.