It is understood that Andreas “Xyp9x” Højsleth will once again compete for Astralis, with the veteran already practicing with the Danish organization ahead of the upcoming BLAST Premier Fall Groups. The 25-year-old missed the ESL Pro League Season 14, where he was replaced by teenage AWPer Philip “Lucky” Ewald.
Xyp9x is set to stand-in for in-game leader Lukas “gla1ve” Rossander, who has been acting in a coaching role while on the server, alongside head coach Danny “Zonic” Sørensen. Gla1ve is set to miss the BLAST Premier Fall Groups, having taken time away in anticipation of the birth of his first child. Back in March, gla1ve posted that he would be becoming a father “in about six months”.
Why gla1ve was handed time off
Astralis Group Director of Esports, Kasper Hvidt, informed fans that gla1ve had been granted time off to focus on becoming a father, even though this goes against the tradition of Esports. Hvidt stated that: “Everybody contributes to the team every single day and, as mentioned when we added a sixth player for the Fall, everybody will have an active role.”
“We strongly believe that players and everybody else working in an elite environment will perform better if there is a balance in their life and room to focus on what’s important. At the same time, Andreas performs extremely well and contributes with a lot of positive energy, so it was an obvious choice for all.”
— Lukas Rossander (@gla1ve_csgo) September 7, 2021
Despite his role at the BLAST Premier Fall Groups, the long-term future of Xyp9x remains up in the air. The Dane revealed that “everything is up in the air” back in August, with the veteran being one of three players at Astralis whose contract will run out at the end of 2021. Peter “dupreeh” Rasmussen and Emil “Magisk” Reif also face uncertain futures.
Why uncertainty also surrounds the Astralis coaching structure
Head Coach Zonic could also leave at the end of the year, with Nicolai “HUNDEN” Petersen having previously been viewed as a potential replacement. However, with HUNDEN Having been handed a two year ban by ESIC, it could be that Zonic sticks around.
Astralis were surprisingly eliminated from the ESL Pro League Season 14 at the group stage, following a 2-3 record, which included defeats to ENCE, Vitality and Heroic. They will return to action against Evil Geniuses in the BLAST Premier Fall Group A on September 16, with Astralis also set to come up against Vitality and Team Liquid.
With only the top two teams in each group qualifying for the Fall Final, Astralis know that they must return to their top form as soon as possible.