Clone of Round 15: Tommi Hovi vs. Mike Long Mercenaries vs. Aggro Blue

Posted in Feature

By Craig Jones

Round 14 pitted current Canadian champion and Pro Tour regular Ryan Fuller against current Hong Kong champion Teddy Ng Chi Fai. Fuller has a top 8 finish in Chicago '98 to his credit. He opted to play aggro waters, a popular choice for the tournament, while Ng stuck to the general rebel strategy that was popular in PT New York and again today. The Rebel deck commander Lin Sivvi may have been deposed but this does allow the deck to play faster with a horde of grizzly 2/2's backed with game breakers like Reverent Mantra and Parallax Wave. Fuller's deck relies more on an airforce assault backed with tanks (Chimeric Idols) on the ground. Rising Waters would be key in this matchup to prevent Ng from rapidly recruiting a large infantry force.

First game saw Fuller get his tank on the table while Ng opened with Ramosian Sergeant and Steadfast guard. Ng used both of these to block Fuller's idol and fearing a rally the Canadian opted to kill just the sergeant. Ng dropped two more, Fuller sacrificed a bouncer to block one and Ng rashly tried to save his man with a Cho Manno's Blessing. Fuller had the withdraw and the mana to cast it and sent both sergeants back to barracks. The game then stabilized with a troublesome spirit holding off Ng's men. A Ribbon Snake allowed Fuller to go on the offensive but only briefly as Ng started to find more recruits out of his deck. Ng tried to break the deadlock with first one and then a second parallax wave only to be dazed and foiled. Fuller had no answer for the third wave though and the rebel army marched through.

In game 2 Fuller opened with a turn 2 airship. Ng managed to bless a Ramosian Lieutenant but that's not much of a clock compared to Airship and Cloudskate, especially when the waters were rising. Ng managed to untap enough mana to recruit a falcon to deal with the Airship and once the Cloudskate faded away Fuller was still stuck on 2 islands, having used a skerry to cast waters. Ng started to whittle Fuller's life away with the untouchable lieutenant and a guard. Fuller finally managed to draw his third island and after some thought brought out the tank, leaving the game poised with him on 6 to Ng's 5 life. He then drew a bouncer and once Ng's army was sent home the tank rumbled in.

The third game looked horrible for Fuller. "What have you done to my deck?" he joked as he mulliganed down to 5. The hand seemed reasonable enough, allowing him land drops for the first three turns and offense in the form of an Airship. Ng then dropped an airforce of his own in Rappelling Scouts. Unfortunately he left no mana open, allowing Fuller to withdraw both it and some volunteers and then foil the scouts when Ng attempted to cast them again next turn. Rath's edge took care of the airship and a cloudskate nibbled for six before retiring from service. Then Fuller started to bring out the big bombers. Two troublesome spirits and whatever Ng tried to do was foiled or thwarted. He kept one at bay with a Kor Haven until Rising waters hit the table and the champion of Hong Kong was sunk beneath the waves.

 

Ryan Fuller 2 (now 29pts)

Teddy Ng Chi Fai 1 (now 26pts)

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