Internationally, in Rainbow Six Siege, Atheris went down to the history books as that team that failed in Mexico despite signing two Brazilian players from MIBR.
Back then, the Mexican community, who mostly was against the organization's lack of investment in regional talent, made Atheris the villain of the story. Eventually, Fenix Esports defeated the Snakes in the Campeonato Mexicano 2020 grand finals.
Two months later, Oscar "Toski" Sepúlveda was back on the Siege scene. The Mexican had to serve a one-year ban for "player poaching" as the decision came after being one map away from qualifying for the Six Invitational 2021.
"What (the ban) affected me mostly was my mental, I thought of keeping competing or closing my competitive career... but when I got so close some bravery woke up inside me, I had to keep fighting," Toski said in an interview for SiegeGG.
"When I was back it was like a 'revenge tour', I think that was my main motivation, I was thinking of what I went through," he added.
After his brief stay in Fenix Esports, the player was back in the Campeonato Mexicano alongside ALPHA Team. Throughout the 2022 season, the team qualified for two out of three Copa Elite Six. However, they couldn't qualify for any Six Major.
Less than a year after his ALPHA Team debut, Toski signed for Team Cruelty. Alongside the purple organization, the player was two matches away from qualifying for the BLAST R6 Major Copenhagen. It was then that his former team, now under Alpha Atheris, knocked on the door.
"Alpha Atheris made an offer for me and I am very grateful that they signed me from Cruelty, it was mainly thanks to Ivan, he was who talked with the owners and told them that they had to sign me, that with me we would win," Toski explained.
The arrival of the Mexican alongside the Brazilian Gustavo "H4skk" Gabas added experience and knowledge to a team that had been promoted to the elite a few months ago.
"I tried to help with their mentality, never give up, always think on how to win, think about the next round and to keep fighting... I felt that they would tilt sometimes, which is normal because they lack the experience, but they had to calm down," Toski explained.
The Mexican helped with the emotional management skills of the team, one of the weak points of the roster back then.
"We tried to work on our mentality, our attitude, which was a big change to the team, we changed how we reacted to losses and that's one of our strongest points," he explained.
"They feel confident, which they didn't during Stage 1, now they feel relaxed, they do their job without being afraid of making mistakes, I think that throughout Stage 1 every player felt like they had to win the round alone," he added.
The team instantly felt the arrival of the two additions. "With my arrival and H4skk's arrival, everyone felt safe to do what they had to and win the round," Toski said.
In a matter of weeks, the Snakes went from being a mid-low table team to winning the top rosters in the league. Initially, though, the team started the stage making some mistakes. After their victory against 9z Team, Alpha Atheris fell against REVEN ECLUB. Finally, the team played against Six Karma for a spot in the LATAM League 2023 Stage 2 Deciders.
Against the green roster, the defeat in the first map of the series put Alpha Atheris between a rock and a hard play. However, against all of the odds, the team completed a surprising comeback, which pushed Six Karma to the Last Chance Qualifiers.
According to Toski, the win against Six Karma was crucial for the team's performance in the playoffs.
"I told the boys to forget what happened and to learn from the first map, I knew that if we won the second map we would win the series because we are a momentum team, I knew that if the boys could keep their mental for the second map we would win the third," he explained.
After the match, Alpha Atheris qualified for the playoffs. The team was two matches away from qualifying for the BLAST R6 Major Atlanta.
"We knew that we had the potential to win the league, but I believe that after beating Six Karma our reality made us, finally, open our eyes, something that gave us a lot of confidence heading to the playoffs," he said.
In the LATAM League 2023 Stage 2 Deciders, Alpha Atheris ran over Knights and REVEN ECLUB and qualified for the BLAST R6 Major Atlanta. With this result, the team is now close to the Global Standings' Top 20. Although it's difficult for the Mexicans to qualify for the Six Invitational 2024, the ticket to Brazil is still on the table.
"Obviously, that's our goal," the Mexican said. "We are very motivated after qualifying for Atlanta, that's the dream," he concluded.
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