Round 3 Feature Match: Anthony “TJ” Imperizzielli (Kings Games) vs. Paul ‘Lil Darwin” Rietzl (Academy Games)

Posted in Event Coverage on July 18, 2003

By Alex Shvartsman

Game 1

Rietzl achieved early advantage by drawing a pair of Krosan Verges. He was able to get a head start on TJ despite going second. No spells were cast for many turns. Eventually Rietzl cast Deep Analysis and had to discard a Moment’s Peace. TJ tried a Deep Analysis of his own, but Rietzl Memory Lapsed it. It was a wise play as TJ was unable to play a land that turn. Rietzl played Compulsion and another Deep Analysis, further riding his card economy advantage. He used another Memory Lapse to keep TJ down.

When TJ attempted Deep Analysis for the third time, Rietzl got to bust out his sideboard tech. He used Cunning Wish to get Divert and drew two cards instead of TJ. TJ finally got to cast his Deep Analysis – out of the graveyard – play another land, and cast a Compulsion of his own. At this point Rietzl had twice as many lands out, and he cast a Mirari to boot. With TJ tapped out he used a double Cunning Wish via Mirari, getting back one Cunning Wish and a Ray of Revelation, then removing the Compulsion via Ray.

Rietzl was able to prevent TJ from getting a Mirari’s Wake into play over the next few turns, then cast a Wake of his own causing TJ to concede the first game.

Sideboard

TJ: -3 Moment’s Peace, +3 Seedtime
Rietzl: +1 Divert, +1 Unsummon, +2 Seedtime, +2 Circular Logic, -3 Wrath of God, 3 Moment’s Peace

Game 2

TJ got Compulsion advantage by playing first, but Rietzl quickly matched him with his own turn 2 Compulsion. It was a true mirror match for a few turns, with players laying down the exact same lands and passing the turn. Both were riding their Compulsions for all they were worth.

A few turns later TJ managed to force a morph creature through.Taking bets on it being an Angel. Anyone? Didn’t think so. He unmorphed the Angel and attacked with it next turn. On the clock now, Rietzl got out a Mirari and countered TJ’s attempt to disenchant it. When Paul tapped out to couple Deep Analysis, TJ flashed back his Ray of Distortion and finally got rid of the Mirari. Down to eight life points, Rietzl should have been getting worried about the Angel and the Nantuko Monastery TJ had in play at this point. Still, he flashed back Deep Analysis, going down to five life.

TJ went for it, cycling to obtain Threshold. In response to him putting his sixth card into the graveyard, Rietzl cast Krosan Reclamation, staving off the activation of Nantuko Monastery for a turn. TJ attacked him down to one with the Angel. Next turn Rietzl was forced to Cunning Wish for a Moment’s Peace. Casting that Cunning Wish could have ultimately been his unmaking though as TJ could now cast his pair of Seedtimes. However, he had two Counterspells at the ready, fighting off death for yet another turn. With Moment’s Peace in the graveyard he had a bit more breathing room now. He cast a Mirari with seven mana untapped, trying hard to make a comeback. A double Moment’s Peace tapped Rietzl out, allowing him to safely Cunning Wish for a second Ray and destroy Mirari with it. Rietzl hard-cast Renewed Faith buying another turn as TJ neglected to attack with his Monastery. On the next turn both creatures attacked. Yet again, Renewed Faith saved Rietzl.

Holding a Memory Lapse, TJ allowed his opponent to cast Mirari’s Wake going down to a single card in hand. He then attacked again and used Memory Lapse to counter Cunning Wish. Rietzl sacrificed his Compulsion to get the Wish again and used that to get a Moment’s Peace. TJ did some cycling/topdecking of his own, finding a Counterspell for it to finally end the game that seems like he should have won many moons ago.

Game 3

The players began game 3 with exactly five minutes left in the round. It would be incredibly difficult for either of them to win a game within that time frame. They went through the motions, trying to perhaps get a “beatdown draw” if the term can at all apply to these decks. Neither of them did, and with two minutes left to them, they agreed to an intentional draw.

Anthony “TJ” Imperizzielli 1 - Paul Rietzl 1

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