Velocity Gaming Explains Amaterasu's Inclusion Over Deathmaker in VCL SA Split 1
Do you think it was the right time to experiment with the lineup?
Velocity Gaming is one of the strongest Valorant teams in South Asia and this is why the team's early elimination from the VCL 2023: South Asia Split 1 was heavily criticized by its fans and followers.
The decision to replace Debanjan "DEATHMAKER" Das with Anuj "Amaterasu" Sharma during the playoffs of the first split was a clear mistake that most could not fathom.
Right after this change, Velocity Gaming lost two consecutive matches with a 1-2 scoreline against True Rippers Esports and Gods Reign, leading the entire organization instantly coming under fire for the questionable roster move.
More than two weeks later the gamble has finally been addressed with players and management from Velocity Gaming coming forward to present their thoughts and perspective on the situation, while also explaining what actually went down.
Velocity Gaming explains reason behind replacing Deathmaker with Amaterasu during playoffs of VCL 2023 South Asia Split 1
In a recent documentary titled 'The Experiment' released by Velocity Gaming, the players and management spoke about one of the most controversial decisions taken by the side in its history.
On paper, Velocity Gaming seemed like the most dominating team and it had proved itself during the group stage by going undefeated, winning eight maps in a row. Despite the flawless run, the team decided to switch things up during the playoffs and it resulted in catastrophe for the side.
Deathmaker who is the backbone of Velocity's firepower and one of the best fraggers in South Asia was benched and replaced by Amaterasu who was returning to the side after recovering from a back injury.
In one of the segments, Deathmaker reveals that he had gone home to Silchar, Assam for two days before Velocity Gaming's last group stage match against MLT Esports, due to an urgent personal situation that had arisen back home.
He thanked the management team and Manoj "Sentinel" Kasyap for allowing him to go back home for taking care of the emergency but added that upon returning was shocked to learn about his bench situation.
"For one second I felt as if I had been benched due to my two-day visit to Silchar, I could not understand anything," said Deathmaker.
The captain of this new lineup, Adam "ec1s" Eccles, adds that he did not expect the management to experiment like this for the playoffs.
In his opinion, overall this player switch was a mistake, "Personally, I didn't want to remove Sunny (Deathmaker) even for the experiment because I feel, if you have the highest-rated player in the league, you shouldn't move him."
Shedding more light on this move, Amaterasu explained that technically it was not him who replaced Deathmaker, he actually came in place of Domagoj "Doma" Fancev who moved from playing the role of sentinel to duelist.
According to Velocity Gaming's team manager, Adarsh “Euphoria” Singh, this change was made because Doma was apparently struggling in the role of a sentinel.
"I think it was a good call. I think it was a pretty good decision to do all the alterations in the first split because we had nothing to lose," said Euphoria about the experiment, for which the team was ridiculed by the public.
Euphoria adds that a few things needed to be tried out internally and he wanted to see if Doma could add something extra. Now that they have the results of the experiment, it is safe to say that the timing for it could not have been better.
Velocity Gaming attained a 5th-6th place finish at the VCL 2023: South Asia Split 1 and will be kick-starting its journey in Split 2 later today on 6th May against Orangutan, winners of the previous league.
Hopefully, the team will be stepping out with the strongest iteration of its playing five now that all experiments have been conducted by them.