FNS is confident in Team Envy and wants to play against the best at Masters Berlin
With the NA Challengers Playoffs coming to a close, Masters Berlin is right around the corner. North America has its three representatives, but the remainder of the tournament still needs to be completed. It ends with a Grand Final contest between Sentinels and 100 Thieves. 100 Thieves had to go through Team Envy in a best-of-five series that went the distance. Team Envy performed admirably as they exit the event in third place with a spot at Masters Berlin locked in. Following the defeat to 100T, Run It Back was given the opportunity to interview the in-game leader of NV, Pujan “FNS” Mehta. He had a lot to say about the team’s goals for Masters Berlin, his confidence in them, and much more.
Run It Back: Coming off the loss, we’ll try to keep it as positive as possible since you have already qualified for Masters Berlin. I’m sure winning against 100 Thieves would have been nice, but you must still be riding high on the fact you’re going to Germany, right?
FNS: Absolutely. This game mattered. Of course, it matters. Every game matters, but nowhere near as much as yesterday’s game.
Run It Back: Just watching your play is incredible. It seems like every shot you take, every rotation, every time the crosshair moves is purposeful. What’s your secret to being so methodical?
FNS: That’s an interesting question. I’m not known for all that, but I’ve been playing a lot of VALORANT. I’ve been studying my opponents and kind of knowing where they’ll be before I get into the server. We play these teams in scrims a lot, as well. You kind of understand how they play, how they’re going to rotate, and what places they like to play on the sites. I have a general idea of where people are going to peek and stuff just based off of pure experience and just from playing against these players so many times.
Run It Back: We saw you frag hard throughout the series, especially on Haven and Icebox. Everyone has their role in terms of Duelists, lurkers, in-game leaders. What can you say about yourself and other players who find themselves taking on multiple roles at times?
FNS: You have to want to do the in-game leader thing. I think that players who are slotted into that role and don’t really want to aren’t going to succeed at it. I guess that’s beside the point. As far as being Killjoy, I like playing the Sentinel role. I understand timings and am able to use them to my advantage. If I’m on point like I was today, it makes it a lot easier for me to my calls off of my timings.
Sometimes I like running in first. Honestly, sometimes I play the Agent wrong. You’re supposed to bait a lot on that Agent, but I’m not naturally a baiter. I just run in with my team and fight. It just depends on how I’m feeling. For players who want to play these roles correctly, the main thing is knowing your timings when playing Killjoy or a Sentinel. Understand how people are going to rotate and use that to your advantage.
Run It Back: Unfortunately, we have to touch on some negatives. Team Envy is zero-for-three now on Breeze. Are you just not comfortable with it? Don’t care for it? What’s the deal with that map?
FNS: We’re trying to work on it as much as we can. We’re pretty confident on it when you get into a game, but sometimes things happen and we don’t know how we’ve lost that round. Other teams are kind of ahead of us on that map right now. That’s something we are going to work on a lot. Along with Split, as well. Those two maps, we were very strong on with our previous lineup’s chemistry and experience.
Because of the lineup now with Marved and yay being new additions to the team, we haven’t had time to go over Breeze. Same with Split, we haven’t had much time on that map. We’re just going to put the time we have left before Berlin in to fix those maps and adjust the other maps, as well.
Run It Back: Overall, this was a massive showing from the squad and its newest members. Looking back on the series with 100 Thieves, though, what takeaways do you have for improvement or even things that went well?
FNS: I think we did the best we could to implement yay with a minimal time span to get him caught up with everything. he did a really good job of implementing himself. As far as Victor, he’s not used to supporting. He’s usually the fragger on our team. When we picked up yay, he immediately swapped to a more supportive role on Skye. He helped yay get a lot of the kills he got in this tournament. People might look at Victor’s stats and might think he didn’t get as many kills, is falling off, or whatever.
He did an insane job, along with the rest of us. Me, Jimmy (Marved), Austin (crashies), we all did great in supporting yay to get the kills he was getting. We made sure he had everything he needed to play well. More than anything else, the atmosphere on the team was really strong and positive at all times. We had a lot of confidence going in, even though we made a change so close to the tournament.
Run It Back: And lastly, Masters Berlin is on the horizon. Tell me what’s on your mind going into that huge event. What are your goals? Expectations? Teams you might be eager to face? Any thoughts you have on it.
FNS: We want to play the best teams, to tell you the truth. The farther we get into the tournament, the better the teams we’ll end up playing. That’s all I want to do, get as far as we possibly can with a lot of practice. No excuses. If we lose, I want to lose in a way where we go out playing our game. I have a lot of confidence in this roster, like I said when we picked up yay. Right now, we don’t have a weak link on the team. That’s the biggest thing for us.
We all believe in each other. We all believe in the team. Obviously, making Berlin in our first run gives us a positive outlook. We’re going to review our games and not get cocky. We will stay as humble as possible, but we are extremely confident in our ability to play well. Even coming close to beating Sentinels, who have been together forever. They’ve been insane all throughout the year. We didn’t really lose any match in this tournament in a terrible manner. We lost to 100 Thieves and Sentinels. Two top teams.
Those aren’t bad losses to have, but we’re going to fix a lot of stuff, especially with just six days of practice. The goal right now is to make sure we review, make sure our game is solid, and not worry too much about how other people do things or how they play. Just go into the tournament with an open mind and understand teams will have different strats. Then adapt to that.
Thank you to FNS for his time and best of luck to Team Envy as they head to Masters Berlin, representing North America! Stay tuned to Run It Back as the VALORANT Champions Tour rages on!
*Note: Questions and answers may have been altered slightly for the sake of fluidity or brevity.