Draft 1: Sam Ward

Posted in Event Coverage

By Liam Coltman

When you're seated in number 7 first draft of the nationals it can be a little daunting; there's nothing worse than starting off your nationals with a 1-2 or a 0-3 because you got pack screwed or hate drafted. Seated to Sam's right was John Burgman, a friend from Melbourne who would ensure that there would be no hate drafting and no colour switching from his right hand side, and this made everything all the more easy for Sam. On the left side was Robert Nadembaum, another friend from Melbourne who is also opposed to hate drafting and colour switching, so with these 3 players working together the deck potential was insane.

Usually in seat 7 your draft starts slowly and you take whatever you're given by the other players however Wards deck started off well getting a Llanowar Knight, a Kavu Climber and a Sunscape Apprentice in his first 3 out of 4 picks. The first noteable move of the draft occurred in pack 4 when Dan Turner opened an Agonizing Demise and an Armadillo Cloak. Since he had been drafting U/W and the player to his left had been taking R/B heavily, including 2 Shivan Zombies, it seemed logical that he would simply splash for the cloak. However when he was called to draft his hand snapped down on the Demise, a move which made the player to his left grimace, but there was one other person who approved of the choice, Sam Ward. As the cloak slowly made its way through the other players Ward kept pumping his fist until it was finally placed on the top of his card stack.

There were no other major incidents during the draft, everyone was happy to let cards bounce to other players without hating them and the result was that everyone on the table has a very solid deck. Ward then picked up a Benalish Trapper in his 5th pack and when Brugman opened a Treva, the Renewer it prompted him to pump his fist and muttering "Mise". He then rounded out then first set of packs by opening a Kavu Chameleon, but was unlucky not to get anything on his wheel as the back opened by Nadembaum was weak.

The first few picks of the new packs failed to provide any amazing cards for Ward, however he was still pleased with getting a Benalish Lancer, a Glimmering Angel and another Lancer on his wheel. He then grabbed a Crimson Acolyte to help him with the red black mages on the table, a Thornscape Apprentice, Nomadic Elf and even managed to round out this pack set with another bomb, Sunscape Master.

Coming into the Planeshift packs Ward knew that it could make or break his deck, he needed a few quick creatures and Thornscape Familiars could fill this gap nicely. He picked up 3 Gerrard's Commands filling up on creature pumpers that he couldn't collect during the first set, and a 3rd pick Fleetfoot Panther. As the draft progressed further and further there were still few early drops, not even Amphibious Kavu. To finish off the whole draft he picked up 2 Hunting Drakes to splash along with Treva and an amphibious Klavu.

Ward was still a little disappointed at the end of the draft, not because of the players but more because of the quality of the cards for his colours. "I got a Treva and that was great, but the problem isn't that, it's the little things, like there were no Thornscape Familiars" Ward explains. "At least I managed to pickup some Gerrard's Commands though because there was no creature pumpers in the first sets. I don't recall seeing one Aggressive Urge or Explosive Growth".

Sam Ward

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