Gateway Round 4: Dario Minieri vs. Ben Seck

Posted in Event Coverage on January 17, 2003

By Toby Wachter

Visara the Dreadful
Ben Seck's reanimator deck has been the buzz of the gateway. Not only is it effective, but also it has that "cool" factor that causes crowds to gather and watch it. Let's face it, who doesn't like bringing back big, fat monsters? It was done effectively at Pro Tour Houston, and apparently the strategy lends itself well to the current Standard environment. Granted, the speed and build are a bit slower, but the end result is the same: staring down a hard to kill, board dominating creature.

Ben Seck and Dave Williams are running versions of this deck, and have both made it to the fourth round. Here, Seck needs to get through one of the Pro Tour's up and coming players. Dario Minieri is from Italy, and has an impressive number of finishes to his name, including 14th at Pro Tour Houston, 6-0 in the Block Constructed portion of Worlds in Sydney, and a Top 8 at Grand Prix London. He is running blue/green, and will need a fast start and some countermagic to stall Seck's strategy before a monster like Visara, the Dreadful comes out and dominates the board.

Game 1

Both players mulliganed their hands to start. Minieri had a second turn Basking Rootwalla, and Seck summoned Doomed Necromancer. The Rootwalla attacked for a point of damage, and Quiet Speculation put two Deep Analysis and Roar of the Wurm into Minieri's graveyard. Seck loaded his own graveyard with Buried Alive, getting Arcanis the Omnipotent, Undead Gladiator and Anger.

He could not reanimate one since he had cycled a Barren Moor, and would need to wait until next turn. Meanwhile, Minieri flashed back Deep Analysis, and brought a Looter into play. Seck discarded Visara, the Dreadful to Undead Gladiator on upkeep, and Minieri scooped right away, since he would have no answer to it once it came into play.

Minieri- 0 Seck- 1

Game 2

A first turn Duress was Enveloped, to Ben Seck's surprise. "Who still has those?" A Looter came out the turn after. Cabal Therapy hit Circular Logic, showing Minieri's hand of two lands, Looter and Aquamoeba. This cleared the way for Doomed Necromancer, and the Looter couldn't dig Minieri into a Logic to stop it. Seck summoned Anger on the following turn and it attacked, so Minieri used his Looter to bring down a blocking Arrogant Wurm. Minieri summoned a second Looter, and Seck cast Cabal Therapy on himself, naming Visara. He showed Minieri his hand of Stitch Together and Zombify, and the Doomed Necromancer was sacrificed to bring the Legend into play. Aether Burst bounced it back, but not before it killed an Arrogant Wurm thanks to the haste granted by Anger.

Quiet Speculation
Quiet Speculation got Minieri three Deep Analysis, and Seck had to figure out a way to get Visara back into play, or another threatening creature into his graveyard. He used Zombify to gbring back Anger, and attacked for two. Deep Analysis was flashed back, bringing Minieri to fifteen life points. On the next turn Seck got his sixth land, which would allow him to hardcast Visara. Before that, he sacrificed Anger to Cabal Therapy, naming Circular Logic. Minieri didn't have one in hand, but he had two Looters to try and dig for one. It didn't come, but Minieri did find an Aether Burst to at least stall things for another turn. Before it bounced back, it killed a Looter. Minieri took his turn and flashed back two Deep Analysis, and followed up with Careful Study, obviously looking for a Circular Logic. Aquamoeba attacked, bringing Seck down to eight.

Seck untapped and summoned Visara once again, and to the Australian's surprise, Minieri did not have a Logic. Yet another Aether Burst bounced it back, while the Aquamoeba attacked for three and Arrogant Wurm hit the table to increase the pressure. However, Visara stabilized the board by killing all of Minieri's creatures. A Buried Alive was Enveloped, but the second one resolved, getting Phantom Nishoba, Faceless Butcher and Arcanis, the Omnipotent. Stitch Together brought back the Nishoba, and yet another Aether Burst brought the two huge creatures back to Seck's hand. This was followed up with Wild Mongrel, which died to Smother. Visara came back out and attacked through the empty board, and Minieri conceded soon after.

Final Result: Minieri- 0 Seck- 2

PT Chicago Masters Gateway 2003: B/R Reanimator

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PT Chicago Masters Gateway 2003: U/G Madness

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