Round 8 Feature Match: Ryan Fuller (Canada) vs. Craig Jones (England)

Posted in Event Coverage

By Kim Eikefet

Craig Jones vs. Ryan Fuller

Only two players had perfect 7-0 records after the first day, and the two of them faced off in the very first round of the second day. Canadian Ryan Fuller, who has been on a fierce streak lately with only one loss in his last 32 matches, sat down on one side of the table. Craig Jones from England sat down on the other side.

Fuller was with a very aggressive red and green deck packed with hard-hitting creatures and burn. Jones had also chosen to play an aggressive deck, although his version was black and red with a little blue for some control cards like Recoil and Probe. Regardless, the match would be very much about who could beat down the other, and so both players had hoped to win the all-important die roll. "I rolled a two," Fuller grinned. That was enough to get to start.

Game 1

Fuller drew a pretty strong opening hand that consisted of four lands, two Thornscape Battlemages and a Blurred Mongoose. He kept it while Jones had to mulligan. His opening hand had held three mountains and no red cards. The second hand he drew was slightly better, although not optimal. He had four lands, a Recoil and a Flametongue Kavu, but chose to stick to that hand.

Ryan Fuller

Fuller came out in a rage. He dropped a second turn Mongoose, a third turn Mongoose and then he bust out a fourth turn Thornscape Battlemage with kicker, bringing Jones down to twelve. Meanwhile, the Englishman had played three Urborg Volcanoes in a row. Finally, he managed to cast a spell, a Flametongue Kavu that killed the Battlemage.

But Fuller had more Battlemages in his deck. He cast one to kill the Flametongue Kavu. Jones cast a Nightscape Familiar and fried the second Battlemage with a Ghitu Fire. Fuller cast another Battlemage to kill the Familiar. Jones, at four life only after the Mongoose attacks dropped a Pyre Zombie. The game was over though, and he scooped when Fuller attacked with his three creatures.

Fuller 1 - Jones 0

Game 2

Jones got to go first in the second game. After Fuller's deck had shown its greatness in the first game, the Englishman actually got to show what his deck could do. His opening hand was strong, he had three lands, two Excludes, a Pyre Zombie and a Blazing Specter. Fuller, on the other hand, chose to keep a hand with a lot of beatdown possibilities, including three Skizziks.

Jones started slowly and played third turn Pyre Zombie that blocked Fuller's turn two Yavimaya Barbarian. Then he bust out a Blazing Specter and started to strip the Skizziks out of Fuller's hand. The Canadian got out a turn four Blurred Mongoose, but the nasty Specter continued its attack. Fuller attempted to cast a Thornscape Battlemage with kicker to kill it, but Jones Excluded it. He then tried to cast kill it playing a Flametongue Kavu, but Jones used his second Exclude to keep his Specter alive.

"Enjoy it, because game three will be savage," Fuller commented while taking Specter beatings. Jones then brought back his Pyre Zombies from the graveyard, and he used it to block the Mongoose when Fuller played his fourth Skizzik and attacked. The Englishman was never worried though. He sent the Specter over yet again, Flametongue Kavu'd the Skizzik and then he used a Ghitu Fire to finish Fuller off.

Fuller 1 - Jones 1

Game 3

Craig Jones

After the two first games merely being show-offs for the two respective decks, the ideal scenario would be to have them really face off against each other in the final game. However, it was not to be so. Fuller kept his hand of four lands, a Blurred Mongoose and two Flametongue Kavus, while Jones kept a hand with three lands, a Blazing Specter, a Terminate, an Exclude and two Ghitu Fires.

Fuller went first. He got out a second turn Mongoose and started attacking. Jones cast a turn two Addle, calling green - but Fuller had a handful of red spells and the Addle did nothing. During the seven turns the game lasted, Jones cast two more Addles. He never drew more than three lands. Fuller drew four lands only, but he had the Mongoose that attacked each round, and finally a Skizzik without kicker and an Urza's Rage put the Englishman out of his misery.

Final Result: Ryan Fuller 2 - Craig Jones 1

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