Pro Tour Hall of Famer Jon Finkel added a 13th Pro Tour Top 8 to his amazing resume at Pro Tour Dark Ascension, helped greatly by his Blue-white Standard deck featuring Delver of Secrets and a heavy dose of spirits that came from the deckbuilding mind of Sam Black.
Magic Pro Tour Hall of Famer Raphael Levy shows off his Standard deck that he worked on with Emmanuel Vernay, a five-color Re-animator deck that culminates with Elesh Norn, Inferno Titan, and Wurmcoil Engine.
The penultimate round of the Swiss. Top 8 on the line everywhere you look. No more hiding places. No more hard-luck stories. Just one on one with everything at stake. Emerging storylines everywhere - Conley Woods dominant. ChannelFireball looking to blow away the competition. Canada looking for a Top 8 through David Caplan. Richard Bland of England, hasn't lost since Thursday. Paulo needing a point to be sure. There is nothing better than the feature match area with a round to go, and we're right at the heart of the action. Join us.
The final round of team play is a critical one. With nine points for the team victory, that's an 18-point swing on the line. Six rounds of Modern follow, and even a succession of 2-1s for your three team members make it very hard to claw back that lost ground. When the dust settles after this final team round, it becomes virtually impossible for a team further down the standings to make a run at the final two for Sunday action. That makes this clash between Switzerland and the United States a huge match. See Ali Aintrazi, Haibing Hu, and David Ochoa face off againt Dario Vicedomini, Matthias Kunzler, and Matteo Rusconi. Modern, Legacy, Standard, as it happens.
In our as-it-happens round up from the feature match area, Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa of Brazil takes on Gerry Thompson, both at 8-2. Also at 8-2 are rivals and new-found friends Matthias Hunt and Fabian Thiele. Both of them are in the running for the Rookie of the Year title, and both were desperate to play each other. Now they have their chance. Finally, we see the Innovator Patrick Chapin in a blazing set against 2006 Player of the Year Shouta Yasooka. Blistering Magic, from some of the best in the world.
After six rounds of Standard, the day is over for individuals in the main event. For the National Team members, however, there's still two rounds to go, and this time there's the addition of Modern and Legacy into the Constructed mix. With Tim Willoughby bringing you text coverage of the early two leaders -- Netherlands and Chinese Taipei -- I'll be watching the current occupants of the third and fourth spots in the standings. It's Dan Lanthier for Canada in the Legacy against Dimitry Olenin of the Russian Federation. In Modern, Noah Long took on Simen Korzunov, while Standard saw Marc Anderson facing Nikolay Zlobnov. Three formats, two teams, one winner. Teams at Worlds.
It's early morning here in San Francisco, and the excitement is mounting as Worlds is less than an hour away. We tour the event floor interviewing left, right, and center, as the clock ticks down to six rounds of Standard. Want to hear what it's really like? Listen in, with dozens of players from around the world talking about their hopes for the days ahead, including National Champions, Pro Tour winners, Player of the Year contenders, Hall of Famers old and new...there's something for everyone as Worlds gets under way.
It's the final round of GP Amsterdam, but for at least some of the feature match winners it won't be the end of the road. The top 8 beckons, but ahead of our intrepid octet are three more tables. All three may well ID, leaving these four tables effectively playing for 7th, 8th, 9th, and 10th place. While all of these are excellent achievements, only two are likely to be greeted with a smile. Tiebreaks you can't control. The best Magic you can play when it matters most? It's time to deal with what you can, and wait for the final standings.
In the final part of our Legacy podcast adventures, Jamie Westlake of the Netherlands takes us through the intricacies of the Ad Nauseam-Tendrils combo deck, while 2010 Dutch National Champion Bas Melis reveals a whopping fourteen counterspells in his blue-white Stoneblade deck. All in all, ten great decks for you to try at your next Legacy event.
There are some incredible combos in Legacy, and we talk to two pace-setting players here on day two. Kim Grymer of Denmark is at 10-0 from ZERO Byes, and his painter's Servant deck looks to mill the opponent in one Grindstone activation. Then overnight leader Jerome Puthod of France talks us through his Hive Mind deck. Oh look, here are some Pacts that you won't be paying for...
Six perfect records in the feature match area - Jerome Puthod of France, Hans Jacob Goddik of the Netherlands, Matthew Frauenschlager and Jonas Kostler of Germany, Mark McGovern of Ireland, and Daniel
Bertelsen of Denmark. Then there's Lucas Blohon and Daan Pruijt, looking to secure a day two berth with a seventh win here in the last round. Who gets the perfect day one record? Listen to find out.
Decks five and six in our overview of Legacy. Ireland's Mark McGovern combines black (B), Blue (U), and Green (G) spells to utilize powerful discard, destruction, and countermagic, while Vincent Lemoine of Belgium walks us through the awesomeness that is Reanimator. Turn one Jin-Gitaxias, Core Augur? Now that's some powerful Magic.
GP Paris 2008 winner Arjan van Leeuwen has an unusual deck this weekend, that features Innistrad unheralded black card Bump in the Night! Then New Zealander Gene Brumby talks us through the classic Combo deck High Tide.
Into the feature match area we go, and the intracies of Legacy up close and personal. Robert van Medevoort and Ruud Warmenhoven look to claim victory for the home team, while others in the public spotlight include Player of the Year contender Vincent Lemoine and Czech standout Petr Brozek.
Carrie Oliver burst onto the scene with a terrific performance at Pro Tour Nagoya, while Germany's Klaus Jons is a veteran of the European Grand Prix and Pro Tour circuits. We talk to Carrie about her aggressive Zoo deck, and then Klaus talks us through the entertainment of pairing Natural Order with Progenitus in his No Bant deck.
1,878 players have come to the RAI Convention Center here in Amsterdam for what is the fifth largest GP in Magic history. Once again, Legacy has proved to be a massive draw, with a vast array of over 12,000 cards to choose from. We look at some of the players who have made the start list, and talk about some of the decks we're going to see in action.
Rounding out our series on some of the most interesting cards in Innistrad, Marijn Lybaert casts his eye over the Green spells, including the mighty Garruk Relentless, while 2010 Grand Prix Lyon champion Florian Koch takes us through the artifacts and lands. As always, there's plenty more to think about and discover in the game that keeps on re-inventing itself.
39 points. It's a lot. It's an awful lot, equivalent to 13 wins. It might not be enough. With two rounds to go, all the eight players in the feature match area know that a win will take them to 39. From there, an Intentional Draw might see them home. While the permutations are many, one thing is clear - losing is not a good idea. Hear Samuele Estratti battle Lucas Blohon. Can Raphael Levy get the point he needs against Finland's Sami Tuomi? Klaus Jons of Germany has an Italian to face in Davide Vergoni, while Denmark's Allen Christensen is in the same position, looking to knock out a home hope in the form of Federico del Basso. There's some terrific stuff in this one, and a nailbiter that goes right to the wire.
...there are great matches. At 8-3, even five straight wins may not be enough. Nonetheless, that path begins for Marijn Lybaert and Christophe Gregoir with an all-Belgia elimination battle. Fighting to lead the Italian charge are Marcello Calvetto and Matteo Versari. One will move to 11-1, the other slipping back into the chasing pack. Also at 10-1 is Matteo Rusconi, the Swiss player who now needs to defeat Raphael Levy, the storied Hall of Famer. Finally, sitting above them all, two players compete at 11-0 to deny their opponent a continued perfect record, as Michael Milis of Belgium faces the Swiss former Team World Champion Nico Bohny. Stand by for some great Magic, as it happened.