Semifinal Feature Match: Michael Mercer vs. Rob Nadebaum

Posted in Event Coverage

By Yaro Starak

Both these players were playing Fires and had won their first quarterfinal match. A win here would mean they would be playing for the title of Australian National Champion.

Game 1

Michael quickly developed some early mana with a first turn Birds of Paradise. Rob responded with a second turn River Boa. Both players then went for the big Shivan Wurm as their next played cards, with the Wurms trading off with each other in combat. Rob had more good stuff, in the form of a Saproling Burst while Michael went with a Flametongue Kavu, which took down the River Boa. Rob's burst came over for some damage, but this was a short-lived offense as Michael had a Saproling Burst of his own.

Michael had another Wurm, which bounced a Saproling Burst token to death. Rob's Saproling Burst ran out of counters, which cleared the way for Michael's Wurm and remaining burst tokens to come over for some serious damage. Rob scooped in his next turn.

Game 2

Michael began this game with a mulligan, which he was not pleased about. Michael settled on his hand of 6 and play began. Rob opened with Rishadan Port and Michael, a Birds of Paradise. Rob removed the Birds with a Flametongue Kavu and then played a Fires of Yavimaya on the following turn. Michael went with a Blastoderm, which dealt some unblocked beatings for a turn. Rob didn't let this continue for long - he played a Shivan Wurm on his next turn. Michael then attempted to erect a wall of Blastoderms to deal with the Wurm but it was too little too late. Rob played a Saproling Burst on his next turn and Michael scooped.

Game 3

Rob started the last game with a mulligan and settled on his second drawn hand. Michael went with Birds of Paradise for his opening play, while Rob started with Llanowar Elves. Both players early mana development were taken down - the elves died to a Ghitu Fire and the Birds of Paradise were the target of Scorching Lava. Michael created a second Birds of Paradise which didn't last long as Rob took it down with a Flametongue Kavu. The Flametongue came over for some damage and was joined by a Shivan Wurm on the same turn. Michael then generated his own Wurm, but lost it in combat by blocking the first Flametongue Kavu and a second Flametongue Kavu's coming into play damage. The Shivan Wurm commenced the beatdown and when a third Flametongue Kavu joined the team for Rob, Michael decided it was game and conceded.

Final Result: Rob Nadebaum defeats Michael Mercer 2-1

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