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Team Liquid’s Elias “Jamppi” Olkkonen praised Riot for their handling of teammate Nabil “Nivera” Benrlitom’s positive COVID-19 test result during the pre-VALORANT Champions press conference.

Days before the start of Champions, sources revealed to Upcomer and VALORANT Zone that Team Liquid’s Nivera had tested positive for COVID-19. Sources told Upcomer Nivera contracted COVID-19 several weeks before Champions. Then, upon mandatory event testing, Nivera tested positive before the tournament started.

Global Head of Competitive Operations Alex Francois’ official statement on the matter revealed Nivera would still be able to compete in the tournament.

“The affected team and their opponent will play the scheduled match on a LAN network built in the quarantine facilities,” the statement reads. “The player who tested positive will compete from an isolated room.”

Jamppi speaks on the situation

At the VALORANT Champions pre-event press conference, Jamppi revealed his team wasn’t afraid of disqualification as much as the prospect of not being able to play with Nivera.

“[Riot Games] handled this situation pretty well and they let us play with Nivera, so, it’s all good, at least for now,” Jamppi said.

When it comes to the effect of playing while physically separated from Nivera, Jamppi downplayed the impact.

“I think every one of us wanted to play on the stage, but that’s how it goes sometimes,” he said. “[Nivera playing in a separate room] has a little effect, but safety is the first thing [at Champions].”

At this time, there is no indication as to whether Nivera will be released from quarantine and allowed to join his team during competition upon negative testing. However, Jamppi expressed his hopes that all of Liquid could play on stage during playoffs.

Team Liquid will have their opening match on Dec.2 vs. KRÜ Esports at 2 p.m. ET. Champions matches will be streamed on the official VALORANT Twitch channel.