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Day 2 Blog Archive

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  • Sunday, October 21: 10:03 a.m. - Draft 1: André Coimbra
    by Ray "blisterguy" Walkinshaw
  • I wandered out on to the floor to find a name to stand behind in the draft. The first person I found was André Coimbra, we have a winner. Come on down André. Actually no, stay there, I'll come to you.

    André's first pick was a Nova Chaser, over Pestermite, Dreamspoiler Witches and a Thorntooth Witch. He followed that with an Axegrinder Giant over Cloudcrown Oak and Woodland Changeling, and Consuming Bonfire over basically nothing of note. Fourth pick he was presented with Kithkin Greatheart and Mulldrifter. The Mulldrifter fourth pick is a pretty strong signal. André didn't fail to take the hint, and was immediately rewarded with a Pestermite in pack five.

    By the end of the first pack, it wasn't clear if André was looking for any particular Tribal strategy or just scooping up powerful cardboard. His first pick of a Silvergill Douser in pack two meant he could still be in any combination of Faeries, Giants and Elementals. The second pick Hostility, despite being an Elemental could go anywhere Mountains exist so still didn't tie André to anything. The fourth pick Stinkdrinker Daredevil swung him back towards Giants, and another Douser fifth pick could be excused as yet another powerful piece of action. Sixth pick, he seemed very keen to slam down a Smokebraider, further confusing the matter for me. Could André just be toying with me? Keeping me on my toes?

    By the end of the draft, I still had no idea where he was headed with his picks. His Blue cards were a solid support color. A pair of Dousers and a couple of Pestermites and their Mulldrifter pal weren't unexpected in any deck with Islands, but after that the distinction between Giant and Elemental was considerably blurred. Being the intrepid reporterer that I am, I sat down with André to find out.

    Apparently he wanted to draft Red/White Elementals, Kithkin and Giants, which was certainly indicated by the Nova Chaser right out of the gates. However, the strong Blue signal combined with the lack of good White threw him off that plan pretty quickly. He was ideally situated for both Blue and Red, and in the end had no problem with the putting both Elementals and Giants into his deck. He toyed with just the Elementals at first, but couldn't deny the potential beating two each of both Stinkdrinker Daredevil and Axegrinder Giant would bring to his game plan as well. The last card cut was a Broken Ambitions. During the draft, André often pondered over drafting them, but usually sided with something else. André cited it a very flexible card, but decided that he was going to tap out early and often with this deck, and didn't think it was a good fit this time.



  • Sunday, October 21: 11:22 a.m. - Round 8: Takuya Osawa vs André Coimbra
    by Ray "blisterguy" Walkinshaw
  • André's draft has been covered already, but I had also spent some of the deck construction period snooping about the tables of Takuya Osawa and Tomoharu Saitou. The Japanese seemed to have a definite preference for drafting strong Blue/Black Faerie decks, a preference that had been echoed by Olivier Ruel earlier yesterday.

    André lead Game 1 with a Flamekin Harbinger for the Nova Chaser in the face of Takuya's mulligan to six. Takuya tried to put up a defense, but André's Pestermite pushed aside a Sentinels of Glen Elendra, and all it takes is one slice of ten damage before a second attack from the Chaser, even a suicidal one, starts to look very threatening. André sealed the deal with an Æthersnipe.

    A third turn Stinkdrinker Daredevil powered out a turn four Axegrinder Giant for André in Game 2, but don't stop reading there, my notes tell me Takuya actually won this game! He dealt with Giant with a Weed Strangle, and his Dreamspoiler Witches managed to dispatch a couple of Pestermites who attempted to join the fray as well. A Broken Ambitions on a Hostility later, and the Witches and an Oona's Prowler had flown over to even the match at one win apiece.

    Takuya again rolled out an Oona's Prowler and started attacking, while André swung back with a Pestermite. A Stinkdrinker Daredevil came down again, but was empty-handed - there were no Giants close on it's heels (click the Gatherer link and check out the picture!). André again deployed an Æthersnipe, but this time found a pair of Ghostly Changelings challenging its supremacy over the battlefield. Meanwhile, the Prowler continued to eat away at André's life total, who was forced to Flamekin Harbinger up a Flamekin Spitfire to take it down. Unfortunately, the damage was done, and Takuya turned the air blue with a Profane Command, taking life from André and granting fear to some of his attackers to win the match.

    Takuya Osawa defeats André Coimbra 2-1



  • Sunday, October 21: 1:16 p.m. - A Disqualification
    by Olivier Ruel
  • At this point, you may have noticed that Olivier Ruel's name is now missing from the standings, especially considering he was doing so well yesterday. Unfortunately, he's been Disqualified from the main event for lying to a tournament official and is now helping run the 99 player PTQ for Kuala Lumpur down the back of the room. Yesterday, Olivier offered to write a tournament report for day one of the event, and for a fleeting moment I thought we were going to miss out. Thankfully, he was still keen to have his say, so here it is from the man himself.



    Ruel always knows when the camera is on him
    I was supposed to write a report from GP Brisbane that would have appeared on that very page on Sunday evening. Unfortunately, it will be up a little earlier than predicted as my tournament is already over.

    I was 6-0 when I faced a really nice guy who had not such a nice deck, just like me. During Game 3, I realized the guy was wearing sunglasses on his shirt, and I tried to see what the cards in his hand were to take advantage of it. I couldn't really figure out what they were, but still stared at his glasses visibly enough for the Head Judge to come and talk to me after my 7th win.

    When he called me to the table, I knew I had done something wrong and I thought it was about my shuffling again, that I had had some suspicious move or whatever. When I realized he was talking about the glasses, I understood that what I considered taking advantage of an opponent mistake was cheating to him. Realizing that at this point my best case scenario if telling the truth was probably something like DQ followed by a ban, then I'd be faced with quitting magic then missing the Hall of Fame next year etc etc. I decided to hide part of the truth, saying I had only had a glance to his glasses and wasn't able to identify any card, while only the second part was true.

    I got Disqualified for getting information in an illegal manner and went to bed a little depressed as I knew I would get banned and have to quit Magic. This morning, I connected to internet at 4 am (thanks jetlag) and my brother came on and told me that judges had been talking about my situation and that I might not be DQ'd after all. So I went to the GP site, but the sanction didn't change, partly because I had lied to a judge. I was told I would not be banned, which is good, but I still lost lot of money and my best opportunity to make it to Level 6 next season.

    Conclusion:
    When the two most important judges of a tournament want to talk to you, it doesn't mean they think you did something wrong, it means they know it. Do not lie to a judge, they can usually tell and it makes things even worse.

    Props:

  • I went 7-0 with crappy deck
  • My brother for phoning half the hotel from the Australian east coast to try and reach me
  • Mathieu, the friend I'm travelling with for his support, I really hope he makes top 16 today and qualifies for Kuala Lumpur
  • I'm not banned
  • Slops:

  • I got a DQ
  • I lost much money
  • I made lots of relatives worry
  • I lied to judge and gave a bad image to the game
  • -Olivier Ruel



  • Sunday, October 21: 2:11 p.m. - Draft 2: Anatoli Lightfoot
    by Ray "blisterguy" Walkinshaw
  • Anatoli has a bit of a thing with finishing second at limited Grand Prix in Australia. And as this is in fact, a limited Grand Prix in Australia, and he's yet again in contention for the top 8, I thought I'd plant myself behind him to see what would take his fancy,

    Many people I have asked have said that the number one common they would like to open in Lorwyn is Nameless Inversion, and evidently the same hold true for Anatoli, but not for David Crewe. Upstream of our protagonist, David first picked something else, shipping a second Inversion directly south to Anatoli. An Ashling the Pilgrim pushed Anatoli towards Red for his second color, and he didn't look back, picking up aggressive Red and Black cards wherever he could. However, by the time the end of the second pack rolled around, all he had was a passable collection of small men and tricks.

    The third pack delivered the goods. First pick Wort, Boggart Auntie followed by Chandra Nalaar, which would have admittedly, been out of place in David's Blue/White Merfolk deck. Next up was a Tar Pitcher, a Fodder Launch and a Tarfire. Suddenly he was cutting playables left right and center.

    Before the draft I asked Anatoli what his plans were. "Just take whatever comes, and see how it goes." He was definitely pleased with what came by the time the draft was done and his deck was built.



  • Sunday, October 21: 3:32 p.m. - Round 11: Anatoli Lightfoot vs David Crewe
    by Ray "blisterguy" Walkinshaw
  • Anatoli came out of the gates exactly as he would have liked, winning the clash on a turn two Adder-Staff Boggart by revealing a Wort, Boggart Auntie to Dave's Deeptread Merrow. A Spiderwig Boggart then turned up to push the Adder-Staff past a 2/2 Paperfin Rascal. Dave attacked back with the Rascal and passed the turn back with four mana open. Anatoli swung in with the clowns and had the Nameless Inversion ready to knock aside the clearly broadcast Sentinels of Glen Elendra. He then added a Soulbright Flamekin to his board. Dave Summoned the School to present opposition, but Caterwauling Boggart made things even harder for him. Anatoli's Chandra Nalaar finished off what the Boggarts started and they were off to Game 2.


    Dave stalled off the attackers a little better in Game 2 with a supersized Oaken Brawler, causing Anatoli to make disparaging comments on the size of it's posterior. A Tar Pitcher forced Dave's hand however, wiping the board clean with an Austere Command, only to have Anatoli recover with an Ashling the Pilgrim.
    "Argh yes! Now I can make him explode!" Anatoli giggled, playing his sixth land.
    "Do it, do it now!" Dave suggested. But Anatoli was not to be swayed. A Whirlpool Whelm reset the Pilgrim temporarily, but Dave couldn't find anything to stop the growing Elemental from burning him out.

    Anatoli Lightfoot defeats David Crewe 2-0



  • Sunday, October 21: 4:13 p.m. - Round 12: Photo Montage
    by Ray "blisterguy" Walkinshaw
  • As is always the case with these events, I always seem to end up with a bunch of left over photos. To be quite honest, it seems a bit like a cop-out to have a random photo montage here, but I can’t help myself. At least there’s no pictures of me in a Towel or Japanese Robe this time. I can’t promise there won’t be one in Bangkok next weekend however…

    Artist in residence, the incomparable Rob Alexander

    Not every feature match can be covered by little ol’ me doin’ this writerin’ thing on mah lonesome, but that doesn’t mean every feature match isn’t worthy of coment. Here we have Grand Prix winners James Zhang and Steve Sadin playing it out.

    This is what happens when you walk away from the feature match area and leave your camera unattended.

    Tournament organizer Rob Teirney keeps on top of the tournament, loving every moment.

    I’m assuming it’s a wig.

    The judges meeting to discuss the ins and outs of everything err, in and outey...

    …and well deservedly letting their hair down in the evening...

    ...even playing some cards over dinner

    I wish I could tell you that I didn’t know these guys… I wish I could tell you that and keep a straight face. Sadly, Dandan and Hassan come from the same city I do. I think I’ll move to Australia.



  • Sunday, October 21: 5:34 p.m. - Round 13: Round Up
    by Ray "blisterguy" Walkinshaw
  • While ordinarily at this point, we're looking at who will make the top 8 and who won't, these won't be the only victories here this weekend. Steve Sadin just came up to me over the moon that he's earned the three Pro Points he came to get to get to Level three, and it looks like Shingou Kurihara's 9th place finish will help him as well.

    But over on the feature match table, Daniel Piechnick was fighting it out with Mathew Bowman. Mathew was in with a win, but Daniel not. After asking nicely if Daniel would kindly scoop him in, Mathew was forced to play for it. The match went to the third, and the third to time. In the end it looked like Daniel's double Judge of Currents would force the draw, but on his last turn, he turned his Merfolk sideways (gaining 12 life in the process) and with the help of his Militia's Pride, swung though for lethal plus one to knock Mathew out of the top 8.

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