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2010 Magic: The Gathering World Championships Round 13: Go, Draw

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Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa (Five-Color Control) vs. Guillaume Wafo-Tapa (Five-Color Control)

Coming into the first round of individual competition on Saturday, both Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa and Guillaume Wafo-Tapa were sitting comfortably on 10-2. With six rounds to go, they both realistically had wiggle room for a couple of losses, but not more than that. With that in mind, both players had apparently opted to field strategically similar decks. In this case, Five-Color Control. You’ll have to bear with me, because the grueling nature of this control-on-control battle does not lend itself to a detailed play by play.

Game 1

Damo da Rosa rolled well to start the game, but Wafo-Tapa trumped his 10 with an 11, and rushed a main phase Esper Charm through while only one of Damo da Rosa’s lands were untapped. Five-Color Control decks being notably mana hungry, keeping up a continuous flow of extra card is important to the deck, and especially important in the mirror.

Guillaume Wafo-Tapa and Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa settle in for a well-spectated control-on-control match-up.

A few turns later, Wafo-Tapa landed a Jace, the Mind Sculptor, after baiting Damo da Rosa with a Cryptic Command during his end of turn step. The players traded Jaces for a few turns, but Wafo-Tapa had drawn three of them to Damo da Rosa’s two, and after checking the top of his deck once, to take the planeswalker out of Lightning Bolt range, he Brainstormed repeatedly, until Damo da Rosa was but a speck of dust in his rear view mirror. From there, he began fatesealing Damo da Rosa to ensure he wasn’t going to find a way back into the game.

Wafo-Tapa’s name has become synonymous with control.

As Jace neared his Ultimate, Damo da Rosa finally summoned a Wurmcoil Engine, and after a Volcanic Fallout during Wafo-Tapa’s upkeep, and another later in his turn, the board was suddenly clear of the many copies of Wall of Omens that had congregated around the middle of the table. The Engine dropped Jace to 5 loyalty, but Jace simply bounced it during Wafo-Tapa’s turn, who followed it up with a Cruel Ultimatum with Cryptic Command back up, to clear out Damo da Rosa’s hand. Wafo-Tapa then summoned a Sunblast Angel and started attacking. A few turns later, they were done with Game 1 ....

Wafo-Tapa 1, Damo da Rosa 0

...Which had taken nearly 28 of the 50 minutes allocated to a round, and as they sideboarded, Damo da Rosa set a timer on his trademarked trusty timepiece with a frown.

Paulo Vitor keeps an eye on the clock.

Game 1

Damo da Rosa led with a Thoughtseize, his deck now optimized for a control mirror. Many, many turns later, when Wafo-Tapa tried to summon Jace, Damo da Rosa attacked his hand again, this time with a surprise Vendilion Clique, denying Wafo-Tapa the Cryptic Command he’d intended to use to protect the Jace. Damo da Rosa countered it with a Cryptic Command of his own, and untapped, summoning his own Jace and fatesealing Wafo-Tapa to keep him off an answer for the planeswalker. Several turns later, after Wafo-Tapa’s Cruel Ultimatum had met with another Cryptic Command, the match was evened at one game apiece.

Wafo-Tapa 1, Damo da Rosa 1

As they shuffled quickly for a third game, Wafo-Tapa asked how much time was left. When the answer returned an improbably small figure, both players shook hands with a shrug and a smile.

Final result: Wafo-Tapa 1, Damo da Rosa 1 (DRAW)

Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa's Five-Color Control
Extended – 2010 World Championships

Guillaume Wafo-Tapa's Five-Color Control
Extended – 2010 World Championships

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