Copyright (c) 2004 by KidArctica.
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4K Goes Korea
September 16, Manuel "Grubby" Schenkhuizen, Sebastian "FuRy" Pesic and Ivica "Zeus" Markovic move to Korea to represent 4 Kings along with WCB_FoV, Spirit_Moon and WCB_Rainbow. "We are all very excited about this," says Grubby.
Rumours about 4 Kings players moving to Korea have been out there for a while now. While the players have tried to keep the rumours in check, work has been going on in the background to piece everything together. One of the key persons in this process has been FreeStyle, known from 64AMD.OverSea and ArmaTeam.
"Grubby was interested in going to Korea and had made some contacts in that direction when I heard he was interested. After some discussion, we came to the conclusion that to meet his desires, it was best to look into forming our own team," says FreeStyle.
He has been a friend and advisor of FoV, who has been shot to stardom through several online tournament victories and of course, his win in the ESWC 2004. His three month long ArmaTeam contract is fulfilled, and the Undead player will now hunt for more victories along with 4 Kings.
FoV joins 4 Kings as an official member on August 1. So does Moon, who plays Night Elf, and the Human player Rainbow. And when Grubby, FuRy and Zeus leave for Korea, they will continue to belong to the international squad of 4 Kings, instead of being separated into a Korean division.
4 Kings will provide salary and lodging for the players. The Korean based players will participate in the APM weg league, and if they qualify also in the MBC 1v1 league. In addition, the plan is to continue playing both in the WC3L Series and in the WC3 Masters tournaments.
Some may find it a tad ironic that 4 Kings, who were strongly against Koreans in the WC3L due to various issues including lag, will have a lineup that consists of mostly Korean based players. Grubby points out though that his main issue was the involvement of the players.
"If you haven't met someone, it is very hard to ensure that you won't hire a clanhopper, or someone who does not really see himself as a 4 Kings player. The biggest issue for me, was that we would be unsure as to how involved the players were," he says.
Team spirit is important for 4 Kings. The agreement with the three Korean players came together much because of Grubby's personal knowledge and friendship with them.
"We have a lot of faith in 4K as one of the best teams in terms of organisation, and we have an excellent relationship with Grubby. A lot of this deal comes down to that relationship," FreeStyle confirms.
Grubby, FuRy and Zeus are planning to stay in Korea for three to four months at first. Whether they stay longer or not will depend largely on results. "Results equals faith equals sponsorship equals possibility," Grubby explains.
The goal is for the team to make the top four in the APM weg league, where each clan war consists of three best out of three matches; two 1v1 and one 2v2. In other words, maximum four out of the six players will get to play in each clan war. Still, the plan is to let everyone play. "Certainly. I told the guys it has a lot to do with matchups, not names," FreeStyle says.
He has heard concerns that FuRy may not measure up to the top Korean Undead players, but he is not worried whatsoever. "FuRy is an excellent team player and he has a lot of potential to make a strong solo player," he points out.
Grubby is also happy that his Undead teammate will join him. "Remember that FoV was considered the same a short while ago. I believe in FuRy for one, and that is enough," he says.
Personally, he hopes to qualify for the MBC league and to finish in the top 16 there. Grubby knows that it will be hard though. "I don't expect to win a lot the first three weeks," he admits.
Around a year ago, MaDFroG, HeMaN, Insomnia and DominatoR from Schroet Kommando went to Korea. Since then, all of them have returned home, and in spite of getting new offers, the players will most likely stay in Europe. Grubby does not think this will be a problem for 4 Kings.
"Remember, this plan is our brainchild. SK was more or less invited. Also take into account how they adapted, or not so. FroG ate pizza or Burger King every single day after a while. I appreciate Korean food, and FuRy and I are interested in taking Korean language lessons while we are there," Grubby explains.
The 18-year-old Dutchman will get plenty of responsibility for this new team. They do not have a Korean manager, so Grubby will have to take on that role. Still, he doesn't feel any pressure at all.
"FreeStyle has done most of the work, and now he has thrown me out of the nest. I have no choice but to learn to fly, or bad luxury will befall me. I let gravity take me, or resist," Grubby says.