Round 7: Feature Match – Jia Bin (Blue-White) vs. Li Chen (Red-White)

Posted in Event Coverage on July 2, 2011

By Chapman Sim

Game 1

Li won the die roll and decided to play first, possibly indicating an aggressive deck. However the action started before any turn could begin, as Jia Bin revealed Chancellor of the Annex from his hand. It helped by delaying Li's Gold Myr from entering play on turn three instead of two. In the meantime, Jia had Oculus equipped with Sylvok Lifestaff but Li decided to kill it with Contagion Clasp. Vulshok Heartstoker hit play, pumping the Gold Myr and bringing Jia down to 18.

Despite drawing a card off Oculus, Jia found himself stuck on three land and could only summon Accorder Paladin then throwing him the equipment. Jia decided to trade his only creature with his opponent's Vulshok "Gray Ogre" Heartstoker but Li was quick to replace the fallen comrade with Vulshok Replica.

Jia Bin surveys the board.

Having no creatures to cast, Jia could only drop Grafted Exoskeleton and pass. Li surprised him with Metallic Mastery, grabbing Grafted Exoskeleton, equipping it onto Vulshok Replica, then attacking for five poison. After combat, he sacrificed the 3/1 and dealt another 3 poison to Jia. With the Contagion Clasp on the table, it seemed that he was going to win soon, but Jia was quick to dismantle it with Divine Offering. Li sighed as Jia seemed to be gaining control over the game and stared at his remaining two creatures in play, the industrious Gold Myr and an Immolating Souleater.

After casting a Mycosynth Wellspring, Jia was able to reach seven mana to drop the angel that had been in his opening hand. Cycling a Panic Spellbomb, Li was able to slap Forced Worship on Jia's Chancellor of the Annex but continued to shake his head in despair as he watched Darksteel Sentinel whittle away at his life points.

Jia Bin wins Game One.

Li Chen 0 - Jia Bin 1

Game 2

Before laying any lands, Li could not resist asking his opponent. "No effects?"

"I didn't draft four of that!", Jia retorted.

Li gave a small laugh before casting Gold Myr, Pristine Talisman and Kudoltha Ringleader on successive turns. Jia Bin, having a seemingly slow draw, was able to only cast Strider Harness on turn three, Viral Drake on turn four and then Trigon of Thought on turn five.

Ironically, it was the drake which was first to get infected by Li's Contagion Clasp. Attacking with both the Ringleader and the Myr, he was able to take his opponent down to 13 life. Jia's slow deck continued to punish him and he decided to chump with his 0/3 Drake, while digging for creatures with his card drawing artifact. He took another six from the dynamic duo, dropping to a mere 5 life now. With a grip full of cards, he mulled over his options and eventually decided on Tine Shrike, leaving mana open for Steel Sabotage but that was hardly enough. Li slammed Jor Kadeen, the Prevailer, erasing Jia's board with his combat phase, and then Kuldotha Flamefiend on his next turn to seal the deal.

Li Chen is back for revenge.

Li Chen wins Game Two.

Li Chen 1 - Jia Bin 1

Game 3

The winner of this game would go undefeated and both players knew they wanted the pristine record. Jia made a trip to Paris and was happy with his fresh six.

Jia curved out perfectly with a first turn Sylvok Lifestaff and a turn two Mortarpod to take out Li's Gold Myr. Kemba, Kha Regent made its debut appearance this match and Jia wasted no time in throwing both his equipment onto her. Things did not look good for Li at all, since he was facing a 3/5 cat-cranking machine by turn four with nothing on his side of the battlefield.

Two cats entered the battlefield next turn and it seemed that the game was over. Blisterstick Shaman and Slash Panther could not stop the incessant wave of cat tokens, but Jor Kadeen, the Prevailer was able to keep the felines at bay temporarily.

Kemba at the far end, with her horde.

Jia stumbled upon his third equipment of the game and proceeded to put the freshly drawn Strider Harness on Kemba. He was happy to play the waiting game, since he was now producing THREE cat tokens each turn. Jia contemplated attacking with his swarm but after some math, he decided to hold it off til the next turn. As expected, he attacked with seven tokens, losing two, and reducing his opponent to six. Another attack next turn ended the game and Li could only bow down to the swarm of ferocious felines.

Jia Bin wins Game Three and goes undefeated!

Jia Bin 2 - Li Chen 1

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