Feature Match Round 3: Merlyn Evans vs Dylan Brown

Posted in Event Coverage on July 22, 2011

By Ray “blisterguy” Walkinshaw

Throughout the weekend, I'm always fielding unsolicited advice on which matches I should feature each round.

"You should totally feature match my teammate, he's playing some really cool Red/Green deck built around Valakut, and Primeval Titan. It's really good."

"My cousin is playing in his first big event; can he get a feature match?"

"I'm 0-6 in matches, feature match me, man!"

"You should feature (2006 and 2008 Australian National Champs top 8'er) Merlyn Evans."

Tell me more.

"This is his last nationals here, before he gets married and moves to the United States."

Not a bad excuse – gotta see the guy off, after all.

"You should feature match my teammate Dylan Brown,"

Here we go again.

"He's playing a Mass Polymorph deck."

Wait, come again? Sure enough, while I'm browsing the pairings for round three, I see "Table 40 – Brown, Dylan 3 – Evans, Merlyn – 3". Yeah, they're 1-1, why not?

Soon to be Australian ex-patriot, Merlyn Evans.

 

Evans brought an established game plan to the table, carefully ramping up his Red and Green mana whilst waiting for an opening. When Brown finally tapped out to cast Conqueror's Pledge, Evans took the opportunity to summon a Primeval Titan, setting up what promised to be a quick and traditional Valakut kill.

If Brown seems unconcerned about this, it was because he was, well... unconcerned. He tapped out again on the following turn to cast Mass Polymorph. As he started flipped cards off the top of his library, it became clear to Evans what was going to happen.

That sinking feeling.

 

Emrakul, the Aeons Torn was joined by Iona, Shield of Emeria, and Stormtide Leviathan. After a quick inventory on his options, Evans packed it in.

Game 2, Evans had a better plan up his sleeve – sideboarding in Pyroclasm to sweep away any tokens before they became oh so much more of a problem. Evans developed his mana with an Oracle of Mul Daya, while Brown summoned Elspeth Tirel. Elspeth being a popular gal, she's often seen with a doe-eyed band of soldiers following her about the place, and this game was no exception.

Evans furrowed his brow at the Pyroclasm is his hand. Elspeth was on two loyalty – an easy task for the Oracle, if not for the Soldiers in the way. The Pyroclasm could take out the Soldiers, but the Oracle would not survive long enough to finish off Elspeth. If Elspeth survived the turn, the Pyroclasm would only deal with the Soldiers in play, and Elspeth would be free to make more during Brown's turn, which could be disastrous. Evans finally settled on sending in the Oracle. One Soldier gallantly blocked, leaving both Elspeth and the Oracle alive.

Dylan Brown won a Grinder last night with Goblins, keeping his Mass Polymorph deck under wraps.

 

"I guess I just have to play like you don't have the Mass Polymorph," Evans shrugged, summoning a Primeval Titan. "You do have it though, you're not unhappy about the Titan," he admitted.

As expected, more Soldiers flocked to where Elspeth had just been ("did you see her? I could have sworn she'd be here, I was totally hoping to get her autograph!" one Soldier gushed) and Brown once again cast Mass Polymorph. The three giants from last game were joined by the Terastodon that had been languishing in Brown's hand in Game 1.

"I'll choose Green for Iona, and..." Brown began, "Nono, it's cool man," Evans interrupted, "I concede. That's a cool deck!"

Dylan Brown defeats Merlyn Evans 2 – 0

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