Vitality announced on Twitter on Tuesday that its CS:GO squad’s in-game leader will not be present for the upcoming BLAST Premier Spring Groups. Depending on the situation, apEX might be absent from future CS:GO tournaments as well.
The Tweet furnished that Dan “apEX” Madesclaire is on temporary leave due to personal reasons. Nabil “Nivera” Benrlitom, who Team Vitality acquired in October 2020 as their sixth player, is replacing apEX for the time being.
Vitality’s coach Rémy “XTQZZZ” Quoniam released a statement addressing the combined pressures of the last few months, the global pandemic, the team’s challenges, and issues in apEX’s personal life contributing to the need for him to go on a break.The coach also mentioned “collective difficulties within the team [which] are currently impacting performance”. This was said in spite of Vitality snatching a podium finish at the BLAST Premier: Global Final 2020.
“In order to ensure our duty as a club and as a coach to protect our athletes, I have made the decision to give apEX some breathing space during the entire BLAST Premier Spring”. XTQZZZ went on to say that apEX’s break may be extended as necessary “to respect his well-being” and to “ensure that he comes back refreshed and in full control of his craft”. Vitality’s coach emphasized the essentiality of apEX’s role in leading the team, and that the team hopes to see him back “at his best as soon as possible.”
XTQZZZ further assured Vitality’s fans that despite the news, the team will continue to fight tirelessly, saying, “We will also continue to innovate and work to find solutions to enable our athletes to evolve in an optimal physical and mental environment that is more conducive to maximum performance.”
The coach’s statement also mentioned “unjustified accusations,” which potentially allude to the Esports Integrity Commission (ESIC) slapping Team Vitality with a $10,000 fine due to stream-sniping and also the accusation that Vitality was abusing the coaching bug, although they were cleared on those charges by the ESIC.
After a 2-0 loss to Complexity a couple of days back, Team Vitality battled against Evil Geniuses for the 10th-12th spot in the BLAST Premier Spring Groups 2021. Vitality lost 2-1 to EG and placed 11th in the Spring Groups. Its next confrontation without its captain will be in the IEL Katowice 2021.
Current Team Vitality CS:GO roster:
Mathieu “ZywOo” Herbaut
Cédric “RpK” Guipouy
Richard “shox” Papillon
Kévin “misutaaa” Rabier
Nabil “Nivera” Benrlitom