Round 7: Nicolas Labarre vs. Roc Herms Pont
R/W vs. R/G

Posted in Feature

By Randy Buehler

by Manuel Bevand

These two players are amongst the best in Europe right now. Labarre is renowned for two Pro Tour Top 8 finishes (including reaching the finals at PT Rome) and also for finishing second at GP Tours. Roc Herms is considered by many as the best Spanish player and has several high finishes including ninth place at PT London this season. Besides those players' obvious qualities, I had a particular interest in covering this match because I put both players in my Fantasy Pro Tour roster! Either way, this match is costing me money points...but I want to see my "team" in action.

Herms is playing red/green beatdown with tons of creatures and good removal like Flameshot and Rhystic Lightning. Nicolas is playing a slower red/white deck with good control in the form of two Topples, Ancient Hydra and several Kyren Snipers. Herms won the die roll and decided to play first.

Game one was a real beating: both players kept their hands, but while Nicolas' hand was alright, Roc's was simply incredible. He started with a turn two Mogg Toady. Nicolas had no turn two plays, so Roc got to play a turn three Vine Trellis. Nicolas eventually played a turn three Kyren Sniper, but Roc was unimpressed as he slammed a turn four Flowstone Crusher on the table and attacked again with the Toady. Nicolas considered his options for a while and it looked like he was trying to get more creatures and stop the Toady when he cast a Nightwind Glider. Game momentum definitely goes to Roc as he destroyed both of Nicolas' creatures with a Flameshot and sends for seven damage, bringing Nicolas to nine life. Nicolas was looking a little better when he dropped an Ancient Hydra on turn five, trying to hold off the Crusher. Roc attacked anyway, casts Wild Might on the Toady and finished Nicolas with a Rhystic Lightning! Turn 6 kill in draft, ladies and gentlemen!

A bit shaken, Nicolas commented on the "real beating" he just received. The players then shared their thoughts about the draft, when it seemed they were the only two to draft red. Nicolas decided to play for game two.

Both players kept their hands, but this game started to look really bad for Nicolas when he didn't play a turn three land. He actually forgot to play lands for the next five turns, while Herms send in an Army of creatures ranging from Rib Cage Spider to Silverglade Elemental. To make things worse, Roc casts a turn five devastate on one of Nicolas' two plains. No fun, no glory, but a turn seven kill this time.

Roc Herms is now 6-1, Nicolas Labarre 5-2. Eleven rounds still to go . . .

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