It’s safe to say we haven’t seen a full lineup of Swedes sign up for the Premiership division in a while. One may recall the now age-old team of publiclir.se, also known as Saints, a Swedish national roster formed in 2014 featuring none other than alba himself in his debut. While the team undoubtedly deserved their spot in the premiership division and their spot in the invite groups at insomnia52, the Swedes ultimately fell short when it mattered the most. They finished 8th in Season 18 of ETF2L, and joint 7th at i52.
In the near future however, we might just see another Swedish Superteam enter the top tiers of ETF2L - challenging the very best Europe has to offer with some new blood joining the ranks. We’ve seen a huge surge in Swedish talent and prospects, mostly thanks to a certain team named Duplo; their initial rise to prominence featured a full Swedish roster, booming with new talent.
Amongst those who were a part of the initial Duplo roster, it’s safe to say _gar and ombra were the most recognisable out of the lot. Together, they competed in and won the ETF2L Fresh Meat Challenge in 2017 with Time Bandits. At this point in time ombra had already gained status as a strong fragger on scout. Since Duplo’s formation in 2020, the two have placed 1st in the Mid Division, made playoffs twice in Division 2, and most recently achieved their greatest accomplishment: first place in Division 1 and a spot in the Premiership division for the Autumn 2022 Season.
It is during the height of Duplo’s success that ombra has unfortunately taken leave for the time being. Swi will therefore be stepping in for him on Flank Scout this season after having played Soldier with the team last season in Division 1. While ombra was a brilliant player in his own right, his departure from the team allows Swi back to his main class, which he has accumulated a fair amount of experience with in Premiership over the years. Swi’s biggest achievement to date is placing 3rd in Premiership with OMNI5 EU in ETF2L Season 29.
balder seems to be the name that is on everyone’s tongue at the moment; he’s been recognised by top players as a prodigy in his own right, and his outstanding logs.tf stats taken from his most recent scrims indicate that he’s almost always leading in terms of damage output and frags, as a pocket scout no less. ETF2L Premiership officials can be an entirely different ball game however, and it will be interesting to see - regardless of numbers - the level of impact he brings to the table when the stakes are at their highest.
Since his time playing with publiclir.se all those years ago, it’s more than reasonable to say that alba is certainly no newbie to the game anymore. Despite not playing scout this time around, alba still stands above the rest of his team, being the most experienced player. alba will be playing Roaming Soldier this season, leaving the question of whether or not he can perform and compete with Europe’s finest on an entirely different class. We’ll have to stay tuned to see if he’s up for the challenge. Of course, playing Soldier doesn’t necessarily rule out the offclassing card, and alba is certainly known for being a deadly sniper.
Premiership newcomers Agen and grix fill out the rest of the roster. While Agen has been floating around the high and middle Divisions of ETF2L for a while, grix has recently returned from a hiatus of sorts. He was a part of the original Duplo lineup that won Mid in Season 35. During the latter stages of Pugchamp EU’s lifespan - grix was a regular in high level European pickup games. While grix played in Season 37 in what would be Duplo’s Division 2 debut, he was unfortunately unable to commit to the next four seasons of competitive play. Coming back from the woodwork to rejoin the team and winning Division 1 demonstrates just how valuable of an asset he is for the team.
We reached out to alba and _gar, who answered our interrogation together :
TEAMFORTRESS.TV: You're the first D1 winner in a year to survive the off-season and play Prem. What do you think helped your team stick together where others couldn't ?
There is this mentality sadly in tf2 where teams die and new teams are being created constantely. I think what helped us is that we are all good friends outside of the game and enjoy playing with eachother. I think atleast for me and _gar we don't feel like playing in other teams, so we put effort in keeping duplo together
TEAMFORTRESS.TV: You've recently had to replace long-standing member ombra with Swi. How do the two compare as Flank Scout ?
They are actually very different in playstyles, where ombra is a bit more passive and Swi is a complete wildcard that likes to make plays. It needed some adjustment in the team, but both styles benefit the team in different ways.
TEAMFORTRESS.TV: Premiership has a lot of strong contenders this season. How do you feel about making your debut in those circumstances ?
It's definitely a pretty stacked season but as it is right now we are looking to improve, and that is mainly through scrims. Whatever the opponents may be we are striving to learn from this experience and improve together. Achieving a position to be able to stay in prem next season would be desirable.
TEAMFORTRESS.TV: Any shoutouts ?
shoutout our team and past team members aswell as our ceo christopher
Hoping to use this season as a building block for later, Duplo is :
- Pocket Scout: balder
- Flank Scout: Swi
- Roamer: alba
- Pocket: grix
- Demoman: _gar
- Medic: Agen