By Yaro Starak
The recent Grand Prix-Sapporo Champion, Satoshi Nakamura, makes another Grand Prix top 8, placing as the 6th seed after 13 rounds of Extended constructed. Satoshi will take the relatively new Turboland deck into the finals.
You played a relatively new deck for Grand Prix-Sydney, what expectations did you have?
I had fairly high expectations coming into the Grand Prix, I knew it was a good deck. As long as I didn't play Trix too much I expected to place in the Top 8. Zvi Mowshowitz even came over in between rounds at the Magic Invitational to compliment me on my deck choice. Although he did say that it would be better without the Arcane Denials.
How do you expect to perform in the Top 8?
Of course I want to win, but I have to avoid Trix. There is a Singaporean player playing Trix in the Top 8 that I have already lost to twice.
You have traveled a lot this year to attend Grand Prix. Do you intend to continue such a busy Magic tournament schedule?
I plan to travel to Grand Prix-Singapore in December this year and probably a lot of the Asian Grand Prix events next year. Pro Tour-Tokyo should be especially great. My success at Grand Prix has qualified me for the Masters series so it has definitely be worth it.
What do you think of the host city for this Grand Prix?
I went and checked out Sydney's Memorial Harbour. It looked amazing during the sunset, like something out of Blade Runner.
What do you think of Australian Players?
I have a lot of respect for the Australian players. I have met many of them at APAC championships, like Rod Ho, Michael Doecke, Stephen Cambpell and Sam Ward. They are generally very nice guys, very friendly and positive, even when they are losing.
How did your fellow Japanese players perform at this Grand Prix?
4 players came down from Japan, and we all had good results. Besides my Top 8 we had 1 top 16 and 2 top 64s. Unfortunately, one came in 65th place.
Lastly, how many hats do you have?
(laughs) I don't know the exact amount, but I have at least 10.