Live Coverage of 2004 English National Championship

Posted in Event Coverage on June 27, 2004

By Michael Groves

Nick is playing one of the new breeds of Ravager Affinity, replacing the now banned Skullclamp with Cranial Plate. Jeremy Duck is playing Red/Green Goblins, and looks to be the favourite, due to his 4 maindeck Oxidize and Electrostatic Bolt, and also 4 Naturalise and 3 Viridian Shaman in his sideboard.

Game 1

Jeremy wins the roll and decides to play. Both players keep their opening hands. Jeremy leads with a Skirk Prospector, to which Nick replies with an Aether Vial. Jeremy has to read the vial to remind him what it does, and then attacks for 1. Nick adds his counter to the Aether Vial, and casts a Cranial Plate. Jeremy casts a Goblin Warchief and attacks for 3. Nick uses Aether Vial to put a Disciple into Vault into play at the end of Jeremy's turn. The plate is equipped to the Disciple, and a Chrome Mox hits play with nothing imprinted, letting Nick swing for 7. Jeremy plays a Goblin Sharpshooter and downs the Disciple of the Vault, and hits for another 3. All Nick can do is make a land.

Jeremy 1 - Nick 0

Sideboarding:

Jeremy: +4 Naturalise, +3 Viridian Shaman, -2 Goblin Warchief, -2 Goblin Sharpshooter, -2 Goblin Goon, -1 Sparksmith.

Nick: +2 Threaten, +4 Electrostatic Bolt, -1 Cranial Plate, -1 Shrapnel Blast, -1 Myr Enforcer, -1 Welding Jar, -1 Atog, -1 Aether Vial.

Game 2

Goblin Sledder

Nick decides to play, letting his opponent know that it would be fun if he won this one, as then they get to play a third game. He has a reasonable start, with Pyrite Spellbomb and 2 Frogmites facing down Jeremy's Goblin Sledder and Sparksmith. The Spellbomb is used to take down the Sparksmith at the end of Jeremy's turn, and Nick untaps and swings for 4 damage. Jeremy attempts to use Viridian Shaman to destroy a Frogmite, but is instead the recipient of 5 damage to the head, courtesy of Nick's Shrapnel Blast. Nick targets the remaining Shaman with Electrostatic Bolt, but Goblin Sledder takes 1 for the team and saves his elvish comrade. Jeremy casts a second Sparksmith and Goblin Sledder, and passes the turn. Due to the Sparksmith having summoning sickness, Nick is able to activate his Blinkmouth Nexus, and equip his Cranial Plate to it and swing for 6, putting Jeremy to 3. Jeremy has another Shaman, and takes down the Frogmite, and swings back with Shaman and Sledder, leaving back Sparksmith for the Blinkmoth Nexus. Nick has no play, not wanting to lose his Nexus to Sparksmith. Jeremy untaps, and uses Wooded Foothills, putting him on a precarious 2 life, as Nick's Pyrite Spellbombs are now lethal. Jeremy summons a Clickslither and swings with both Viridian Shamans and the Clickslither, sacrificing the Sledder to pump the Clickslither. Nick's draw step reveals a Blinkmoth Nexus, and it's on to game 3.

Jeremy 1 - Nick 1

Game 3

Neither player mulligans for this decisive game, and Jeremy leads with a mountain. His hand is 5 lands, Viridian Shaman and Oxidize. Nick casts a Pyrite Spellbomb and Welding Jar and says go. All Jeremy can draw is land, and he passes the turn. The opposite is true for Nick, who cycles his Spellbomb for a card, and still no land. He casts a Chrome Mox, imprinting a Shrapnel Blast, and makes another Pyrite Spellbomb. Jeremy attempts to Shaman the Mox, but the Welding Jar is sacrificed to regenerate it. Nick again fails to draw a land, and a card from the Spellbomb doesn't help him. Jeremy makes a Sledder and swings with Shaman, and Naturalises Nick's Chrome Mox. Nick responds with an Electrostatic Bolt on the Viridian Shaman, and the Sledder saves it. Jeremy is still drawing land, as opposed to Nick who cannot, and is forced to take 3 a turn. He eventually draws a Blinkmouth Nexus and a Great Furnace, and tries to cast Threaten during Jeremy's combat step. Jeremy uses Viridian Shaman on the Furnace, and Nick responds with Shrapnel Blast, killing the Viridian Shaman. Nick has a Frogmite, but an Oxidize destroys it, allowing Jeremy to swing for the win.

Jeremy Duck wins 2-1 and goes on to the semi-final.

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