Round 12 Feature Match: Itadani Eisaku vs. Tomohide Sasakawa

Posted in Event Coverage

By Josh Bennett

Both players in this round are relative newcomers to the Pro Magic scene. Neither have had any spectacular finishes yet. In fact, Itadani Eisaku is just out of High School. Both are playing decks designed by well-known Japanese designer Hirabayashi, creator of Masques Block's first Snuff-O-Derm deck.

Early in game one, Sasakawa's Ravenous Rats caught a Treva's Ruins. However, he was soon under attack by a pair of Galina's Knights, with Eisaku finding all three colors of mana without the lair's help.

He didn't have any plays for two more turns, falling to low life from the Knights. On his sixth turn he tried to kick up a Skizzik, but Eisaku was ready with an Absorb. He untapped and played Questing Phelddagrif, causing Sasakawa to frown.

Sasakawa needed to answer the hippo. He played Flametongue Kavu, but before it came into play, Eisaku gave his hippo protection from red. Sasakawa responded to that with Terminate. This meant that the only legal targets for its comes-into-play ability were his own creatures. The Flametongue killed itself. The Rats jumped in the way of one of the Knights.

Eisaku locked out his best option with a pair of Meddling Mages stopping Void. One of them was removed with another Flametongue, but that wasn't nearly enough. He ended the game the next turn by playing Armadillo Cloaks on one of the Knights.

Sasakawa was very concerned about his opening hand. He left it face down on the table for a full minute before turning it over and flipping through it. He relaxed somewhat at what he saw.

He Addled Eisaku for white on turn two, and was given the option of Voice of All, Angelic Shield, or Meddling Mage, seeing a pair of Fact or Fictions he couldn't touch. He chose the Mage.

He played a Ravenous Rats and got an Armadillo Cloak. A second Addle took the Voice of All. Sasakawa added to his sluggish beatdown with a Nightscape Familiar. Eisaku still had no play, and next turn Sasakawa cast Void.

Eisaku responded with Fact or Fiction, seeing Elfhame Palace, Forest, Voice of All, Questing Phelddagrif and Armadillo Cloak. The cards were split into lands and spells. Eisaku took the lands for his first chance at green mana. He lost his other Fact or Fiction to the resolution of Void.

Sasakawa added a Pyre Zombie to his crew and tried to Addle Eisaku. He Absorbed it, grateful for the three life. During his next main phase he cast Fact or Fiction, turning over Coastal Tower, Voice of All, Questing Phelddagrif, Armadillo Cloak and Stormscape Apprentice. He got the angel and the Hippo, but lacked the mana to cast either of them.

Sasakawa untapped and cast Void for 4, taking them away. Eisaku sacrificed the Shield to bounce the Zombie while he was tapped out, but had no other defense to bring to the table. Sasakawa brought the Zombie back and started attacking. Two turns later the game was over.

Sasakawa mulliganed in game three. Eisaku was in the game early with Elfhame Palace, Island and Galina's Knight. Sasakawa made a Nightscape Familiar. He traded hits with Eisaku for one round, then tried to make another Familiar, but it was Excluded.

Eisaku cast a Voice of All, which got protection from Red, but it didn't matter when Sasakawa Voided him for four. Eisaku lost a Fact or Fiction and a Questing Phelddagrif from his hand. He made an Angelic Shield and hit with his Knight. Sasakawa hit back and made a Pyre Zombie. This was enough to keep Eisaku on the defensive. The ground was further stalled by Sasakawa's third Familiar.

Eisaku made a Meddling Mage to keep Void from ruining his day. Two turns passed before Sasakawa removed it with a Ghitu Fire at the end of turn. Eisaku replaced it with another. Sasakawa rushed in with a kicked Skizzik, and Eisaku double-blocked. He thought about saving his Mage with the Angelic Shield, but put it in the graveyard instead.

Sasakawa kicked up a second Skizzik. Eisaku played Fact or Fiction, looking for answers. His Galina's Knight could soak three a turn, but that wasn't enough. He revealed two Questing Phelddagrifs, an Elfhame Palace, a Coastal Tower and an Angelic Shield. He got one of the hippos and a Shield, and sacrificed the Shield in play to return the Skizzik. Sasakawa played a Mountain and Voided the hippo out of his hand.

Eisaku played Eladamri's Call to fetch another. The Skizzik came back for another round, and rather than risk the Phelddagrif he put the Knight in front of it, taking two. Sasakawa played Yawgmoth's Agenda. Now he had all the answers he needed. After taking one Hippo swing for six, he Voided it away. Then he Ghitu Fired Eisaku at end of turn, untapped, and did it again to take the match.

Final Result: Sasakawa defeats Eisaku 2-1

Final Result: Mowshowitz 2 - Chai 0

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