Tom B. August 23, 2019
Finnish Counter-Strike:Global Offensive team ENCE has signed former mousesports rifle player Miikka "suNny" Kemppi to the team.
SuNny stepped down from mousesports in March and will replace Aleksi "Aleksib" Virolainen after the Berlin Starladder Major. This will be suNny’s second time representing ENCE, as in 2013 he was also a member of the team. In 2018 suNny would be named 16th best player in the world having won a trophy at ESL One New York in addition to seeing success at other events.
Aleksib confirmed via a post on Twitlonger that he has been removed from the active roster. In his statement he revealed the move had come as a shock, though he also thanked the organization for their support.
“I've been benched from ENCE. This came out of the blue for me, and at first it hurt. Now, I just have to deal with it,” Aleksib said.” “I want to thank the whole team and ENCE's management for the last 17 months. I'll remember the laughs and good times.”
Aleksib has been a key member of ENCE’s successes such as their second-place finish at the IEM Katowice Major, and it comes as a surprise to many that ENCE is making such a dramatic change now.
Aleksib expressed his thanks also to his fans and reassured them that he intends to carry on playing and is open to offers from new teams.
“Huge thanks to all the fans for the ongoing support. Your encouragement has been important to me,” Aleksib said. “As for my future, I'm eager to continue playing. I've learned a lot, which I want to put in use for whatever comes next.”
ENCE has qualified for the Legends stage of the 2019 Berlin Starladder Major and will begin their tournament run on August 28. The team is currently ranked fourth in the HLTV rankings behind Astralis, Vitality and Team Liquid. It remains to be seen how the news will impact the performance of Aleksib and the team as a whole, with this news breaking mere days before one of the biggest competitions of the year.