British CS:GO team Viperio has two new faces on its lineup, as the organisation makes some changes to its roster after the team's Paris Major RMR run.
Viperio signs Kirk "Tadpole" Stephens, promotes Javier "Ping" Griffiths to the active roster
The UK organisation has parted ways with two team members, with Viperio saying goodbye to Jack "Gizmy" von Spreckelsen and Marco "MMS" Salomone.
In their place, Viperio has a fresh face - as well as a returning player, as the organisation hopes to improve on their inability to qualify for the upcoming BLAST.tv Paris Major.
First up, Javier "Ping" Griffiths is rejoining the team's active roster. Ping was a part of the original SOS lineup that Viperio acquired in October 2022, but he was moved to a substitute role (and subsequently benched) due to personal reasons on January 9 2023. Prior to his time on SOS, Ping has experience on teams such as Inferus eSports and JESTE, among others.
There's also some new blood on the team, however. Viperio has announced that it has signed Kirk "Tadpole" Stephens, who joins the UK team from Dripmen, with whom he has been playing since December 2022. Tadpole once retired from CS:GO in order to pursue a career in VALORANT, however he later returned to the game in January 2021 in order to join UMX Gaming for a short stint - before spending over a year with Into the Breach.
In an exclusive interview with Luckbox, Viperio coach Ciaran "BisCu" King commented on the rationale behind the roster change, and the overall feeling on the team.
"Making a roster change is the last thing I want to do as a coach, for me it's like admitting defeat frankly," says BisCu. "I believe that Jack and Marco are both fine players and have shown as much during their time with us, however, our recent form has been alarming and as a team we believe we've exhausted every avenue in order to arrest the slide we have been on.
"It can take a toll on the morale and the chemistry of the group when you work so hard to change the results but they stay the same, so we are forced to admit defeat and shake the roster up in order to explore another avenue to stop the bleeding. This is where we have to make hard decisions about the futures of players in the roster and unfortunately, this has concluded with Marco and Jack leaving the project to pursue new opportunities and continue their young careers in roles and teams that suit them, we wish them nothing but good luck and love."
Viperio are fresh from their run at the Paris Major RMRs. And while they ultimately failed to qualify for the last Paris Major, they still impressed fans with a closer-than-expected debut match against Fnatic, as well as a solid performance against Sprout.
The team shared their takeaways from the experience in an exclusive interview with Luckbox, in which Callum "Girafffe" Jones expressed admiration for a fellow UK team, stating: "Which team impressed me the most? Would definitely have to be Into The Breach. They had one of the hardest runs and still made it through which is incredible. It’s an added bonus that they’re a UK roster, flying the flag for us at the final CS:GO Major."
The Viperio lineup now consists of Tom "arTisT" Clarke, Callum "Girafffe" Jones, Matas "Extinct" Strumila, Javier "Ping" Griffiths, Kirk "Tadpole" Stephens and coach Ciaran "BisCu" King.
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