ENCE has been the surprise package of IEM Cologne 2023, showing the same star power they had back in IEM Dallas 2023. A key portion of that star power has been Guy "NertZ" Iluz, who has shown that some players are just made for the upper echelons of Counter-Strike.
Following their win over Heroic, Sebastian "Horizzon" Lalic of BLIX spoke with NertZ about his transition to tier one, the dynamic on ENCE and the team's smooth communication.
Sebastian "Horizzon" Lalic, BLIX: You've now finished a full season in tier one with ENCE, how has the transition been, and has anything surprised you?
NertZ: No nothing surprised me at all, I feel like for me it's easier to play against tier one because they play more logical CS. Overall I am having fun.
BLIX: I was gonna ask if you were more comfortable in Tier One. Because whilst you were good on Endpoint on Ence you've hit another gear. Is there something specific about the way ENCE plays that suits you?
NertZ: It's not about the way we are playing it's the players, the players are amazing. We are supporting each other we have amazing chemistry between the players. I won't even say we are friends, we are family. You won't find another international team like this at all.
BLIX: Is Snappi a big part in facilitating that, maybe like a father figure in the team?
NertZ: I would say the father of the team is our coach. He is unique, there's no coach like him. I will say Marco “Snappi” Pfeiffer is, of course, one of the most characterful people on the team, with his experience he helps us a lot.
BLIX: If you could go back a few months ago when you joined ENCE and give yourself any advice, what would it be?
NertZ: Keep working hard, and keep believing in yourself. I did great!, I always thought to myself we would win an event but I didn't think it would be so fast! But I think the answer is, keep believing in yourself.
BLIX: How is the actual chemistry on the server, trades, and positions-wise?
NertZ: It's a good experience mostly, basically, when you play, you know the basics of where you need to go, how, and who to trade. This is basic stuff for us, we're not even talking about it. Sometimes you just say “be close to me and come trade”, this is the kind of stuff it's seamless.
BLIX: Is it also seamless in communications then?
NertZ: It's simple. For example, every team has this rule called "spacing" If you are not close to your friend you say “spacing, spacing, okay you ready?” Just this stuff.
ENCE are currently in battle against Vitality, and will look to make it to a second grand finals after winning IEM Dallas 2023 earlier in the year. Be sure to check out our CS:GO portal for the rest of our Cologne interviews.