Astralis breathed a collective sigh of relief as new AWPer Lucky puts on a respectable debut at ESL Pro League.
Astralis made the last-minute decision to swap Andreas “Xyp9x” Højsleth with brand new AWPer Philip “Lucky” Ewald for ESL Pro League Season 14. In the squad’s first match against Team Spirit, Lucky demonstrated an unexpected amount of confidence. The young sniper went toe-to-toe against established international competition in the 2-1 Astralis victory. For fans of Astralis, Lucky’s performance is a good omen for the team’s future.
Astralis’ first half against Team Spirit started off on the wrong foot. The Russians quickly gained an economic advantage and a 7-2 scoreline. Astralis got back into gear with the help of Lucky’s AWPing skills. The new player won two consecutive one-on-one battles to keep Astralis alive on map one. Lucky showed off his defensive prowess with excellent positioning in round 13.
It still wasn’t enough to overcome Spirit on its own map pick. Lucky ended game one on Dust 2 with 16 kills, tied with Peter “dupreeh” Rasmussen as Astralis’ top fragger. Game two on Inferno was much more comfortable for the Danes. An early 7-1 lead on Asralis’ CT side spiraled into a quick 16-6 victory. Lucky contributed a couple of key frags, including a one-versus-two clutch.
Map three, Ancient, served as Lucky’s final test. Spirit had a 3-2 record on the newest CSGO map heading into the decider compared to Astralis’ 0-2 Ancient record. This reflected in an opening 6-3 round advantage for Spirit, but Astralis fired back with six consecutive rounds to win the half 9-6. That streak continued almost uninterrupted on the CT side for a 16-7 Astralis victory. Lucky’s AWP contributed 12 takedowns to his team’s first victory on Ancient.
Overall, Lucky nabbed 40 kills with 39 deaths, giving him an HLTV rating of 1.03 for the series. He didn’t grab a ton of kills, but Lucky’s ability to lock down angles was crucial to Astralis’ win. Lucky even scored the occasional entry frag on Inferno when his teammates were low on health, showing himself to be the good player his new teammates at Astralis believe him to be.
Lucky performed about as well as you can expect from a rookie at CSGO’s top tier. Team Spirit was not an easy opponent. Lucky couldn’t quite measure up to sniping star Abdulkhalik “degster” Gasanov, but Astralis captain gla1ve is most likely satisfied with Lucky’s Astralis debut.