Astralis have confirmed that they have reached an agreement with Cloud9 for the transfer of Patrick “es3tag” Hansen to the North American organisation. The deal, which will be effective after DreamHack Open Fall, is described by Anders Hørsholt, CEO of Astralis, as “one of the biggest transfers on record”, although the financial terms of the agreement will not be disclosed by any of the parties.
es3tag has been on Astralis‘ books since July 1, when he was recruited on a free transfer following the expiry of his contract with Heroic. He has averaged a 1.12 rating for the Danish team, who returned to the top of the world rankings on Monday after winning ESL Pro League Season 12’s European division.
“I am proud to represent Astralis, I love the fans and I never for a second thought I would be move on to a different team this early,” es3tag told Astralis’ website. “I just won my first big title and I truly enjoy working with all the guys on and around the team. Over the past six months, I have grown as a person and a player, and I owe a lot to the organization.
“That being said, what Cloud9 is offering me is something I needed to consider seriously. I love the ideas behind the project, and I believe it will be a team to consider in the top of CS for the years to come. While I am sad to leave Astralis and all the people here, I look forward to the challenge in Cloud9.”
es3tag rounds out the starting lineup of the new-look Cloud9, who will make their first appearance in Betway Nine to Five 5, a $50,000 tournament that will run between October 26 and November 4. The North American organisation is looking to add “an active sixth player” to the squad, according to general manager Henry “HenryG” Greer, to ensure that the team’s plans are not disrupted by visa issues or health problems.
Aleksandar “kassad” Trifunović (coach)
More to follow…