A week earlier it was revealed that Natus Vincere and Winstrike Team swapped Ioann “Edward” Sukhariev and Kirill “Boombl4” Mikhailov respectively. Ioann, 31, has played for Natus Vincere for nearly a decade, however, he had also played for Astana Dragons for nearly four months in 2013.

He has had an impressive run with Na’Vi while they were runners-up at a couple of CS:GO majors and conquered ESL One: New York 2016, CS:GO Asia Championship, StarLadder & i-League Season 5 & 7 and several other plausible performances.

Edward at StarLadder i-League StarSeries Season 5 (via StarLadder)

On the contrary, Kirill has displayed serious potential during his tenure at Quantum Bellator Fire (QBF) and Winstrike Team. Quantum Bellator Fire rose to fame when the Russians secured a 5-8th position at ELEAGUE Major: Boston 2018 all the way through regional open qualifiers. Quantum Bellator Fire (QBF) defeated Flash Gaming, Team Envy and AVANGAR in New Challengers Stage and advanced to New Legends Stage.

The underdogs still didn’t cease as they further took down Virtus.Pro, Gambit and mousesports to make it through the New Champions Stage. Their journey ended against Natus Vincere in the quarter-finale but they had definitely carved out a reputation for themselves and a slot at the next major.

So, what does this exchange means? Is he merely a replacement for Kirill until the organization finds a permanent fifth? Can the transfer of experience facilitate Winstrike Team to peak once again like they did at Boston major? Let us analyse and answer these questions considering various speculations.

“To be entirely honest, I had been anticipating this moment for some time now, maybe for around a year.” In an interview to cybersport.ru, Ioann revealed that he was anticipating this move since a year.

Further, he suggested that Na’Vi received a request from Team Winstrike that the qualifiers for the major would begin soon and they needed to complete their roster. Hence, Na’Vi loaned him to Winstrike Team for a period of ninety days. Kirill was a sniper and IGL for his former team and now, Ioann will be calling shots for the CIS lineup.

“The situation was not easy, qualifiers would soon begin, and if they had not completed the lineup now, then it would have been impossible to do this.”

“Winstrike asked for help, I agreed – for a period of three months and then I will become a free agent,” said 31-year-old to cybersport.ru about his arrival at Winstrike.

Ioann has the experience, lots and lots of experience. On the contrary, Winstrike lineup has a couple of teenagers with nasty raw aim. Since Ioann has decided to lead the lineup, it would be interesting to see whether he would be able to utilize the firepower to its fullest.

However, Winstrike Team has eventually lost it’s first encounter after the roster change 0-2 against Tricked Esports. It is also the first time that 31-year-old has dedicated to call the shots.