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Grand Prix-Sendai Top 8 Player Profiles

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Motoaki Itou

Name: Motoaki Itou
Hometown: Kawasaki
Age: 24
Occupation: Freelancers
Previous Magic Accomplishments:
Record (including byes):
Byes: 3
Day 1: 8-1
Day 2: 4-1-1
Where do you usually play Magic? Kawasaki Hobby Station, PWC tournaments
What deck did you use? Who designed it? Cobra Planeswalker Bant, my own design.
Did you make any changes to the design yourself? I used 4 Jaces.
Any memorable matches? I lost my deck right before Round 15.
Any memorable decks? I’m too tired to remember.
If you were to play in Japan Nationals, which deck would you use? I’m not qualified, so I haven’t thought about it.
What’s your favorite format? I like Limited.


Brian Kibler

Name: Brian Kibler
Hometown: San Diego
Age: 29
Occupation: Game designer. Look for Ascension, coming out this August!
Previous Magic Accomplishments: Three Pro Tour Top 8s, including one win. I’ve been in the Top 8 of a Grand Prix 10 times. I’ve made it to Nationals Top 8 twice before, with no win. =(
Record (including byes):
Byes: 3
Day 1: 9-0
Day 2: 4-1-
Where do you usually play Magic? I mostly just play Premier events - when I play FNM I go to Sky High Comics in San Marcos, CA, I test usually with Ben Rubin.
What deck did you use? Who designed it? Next Level Bant. Originally designed by Pat Chapin - I’ve tuned it a lot since GPDC.
Did you make any changes to the design yourself? Vengevine, Jace, Elspeth
Any memorable matches? Come back from one life to beat Mori in round one today!
Any memorable decks? Jund and U/W are both strong decks, but there’s nothing as quiet as this deck!
If you were to play in Japan Nationals, which deck would you use? I’d play the same deck with a few sideboard tweaks.
What’s your favorite format? Block constructed - fresh constructed formats with a limited card pool are always interesting.


Hiroyuki Shimoya

Name: Hiroyuki Shimoya
Hometown: Sapporo
Age: 26
Occupation: Auction buyer
Previous Magic Accomplishments: I’ve played in Nationals, and gone 3-0 at an FNM.
Record (including byes):
Byes: 0
Day 1: 8-1
Day 2: 4-0-2
Where do you usually play Magic? BJ Shop (Sapporo)
What deck did you use? Who designed it? I played a Bant deck of my own design.
Did you make any changes to the design yourself? I think the solution is 4 Jaces.
Any memorable matches? My first match on Day 2 was against a non-Japanese player. It was my first time to play a foreigner, and we had some communication problems.
Any memorable decks? I think the Dredge deck that got 3 byes is amazing.
If you were to play in Japan Nationals, which deck would you use? Either Next Level Bant, or the same deck I used today.
What’s your favorite format? Legacy. I like the rough-and-tumble feel of classic Magic.


Takeshi Ozawa

Name: Takeshi Ozawa
Hometown: Miyagi Prefecture
Age: 27
Occupation: Engineer
Previous Magic Accomplishments: Finalist, Grand Prix Yamagata
Record (including byes):
Byes: 3
Day 1: 9-0
Day 2: 4-2
Where do you usually play Magic? Sendai, also Online.
What deck did you use? Who designed it? I played Demon Jund, designed by the Jund-kai.
Did you make any changes to the design yourself? I put in Abyssal Persecutor to deal with Vengevine.
Any memorable matches? My opponent had 4 attackers versus just one blocker of mine, but I was able to swing with the demon for the win.
Any memorable decks? None in particular.
If you were to play in Japan Nationals, which deck would you use? The same as today.
What’s your favorite format? Limited.


Ryou Tasaki

Name: Ryou Tasaki
Hometown: Tokyo
Age: 25
Occupation: Doctor
Previous Magic Accomplishments: First champion of The Limits
Record (including byes):
Byes: 3
Day 1: 5-1
Day 2: 4-2
Where do you usually play Magic? TASAKI HOUSE
What deck did you use? Who designed it? UW Control, designed by myself and my friends Kimura and Yamakawa.
Did you make any changes to the design yourself? 
Any memorable matches? I was playing Saito. I had a Sovereigns and a 1/3 with Conscription on it, and was on the clock to lose the next turn, but I won because the 1/3 had Path played on it during upkeep.
Any memorable decks? Jund was stronger than I expected.
If you were to play in Japan Nationals, which deck would you use? Same as today.
What’s your favorite format? Limited. It’s simple—you just need to open packs and you can play. I play it with my friends all the time.


Makihito Mihara

Name: Makihito Mihara
Hometown: Chiba
Age: 28
Occupation: Company employee
Previous Magic Accomplishments: 2006 World Champion, two other PT Top 8s
Record (including byes):
Byes: 3
Day 1: 8-1
Day 2: 4-1-1
Where do you usually play Magic? LMC
What deck did you use? Who designed it? A Planeswalker Control deck, by Ryuuichi Arita
Did you make any changes to the design yourself? I put in a lot of X spells
Any memorable matches? I played a Polymorph deck that got Emrakul out twice but still managed to win.
Any memorable decks? Kibler’s Bant deck. It’s stronger than it looks.
If you were to play in Japan Nationals, which deck would you use? The same as today
What’s your favorite format? Draft, because you can do it without any preparation.


Shouta Yasooka

Name: Shouta Yasooka
Hometown: Tokyo
Age: 25
Occupation: ?
Previous Magic Accomplishments: 2006 Player of the Year
Record (including byes):
Byes: 3
Day 1: 5-1
Day 2: 4-0-2
Where do you usually play Magic? I don’t.
What deck did you use? Who designed it? I played a Jund deck of my own.
Did you make any changes to the design yourself? No
Any memorable matches? When I played Kibler.
Any memorable decks? No
If you were to play in Japan Nationals, which deck would you use? Jund
What’s your favorite format? Anything. I just love playing Magic.


Yuuya Watanabe

Name: Yuuya Watanabe
Hometown: Kanagawa Prefecture
Age: 21
Occupation: Magic player
Previous Magic Accomplishments: 2007 Rookie of the Year, 2009 Player of the Year
Record (including byes):
Byes: 3
Day 1: 6-0
Day 2: 3-1-2
Where do you usually play Magic? Anywhere in the world
What deck did you use? Who designed it? Next Level Bant, with Katsuhiro Mori and Brian Kibler
Did you make any changes to the design yourself? No
Any memorable matches? When I played Nakano. The Kawasaki curse was in full affect
Any memorable decks? The Sovereigns deck is very good
If you were to play in Japan Nationals, which deck would you use? The same as today
What’s your favorite format? Draft. It’s always a different game.

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