A young player from Santo André, São Paulo who finally broke through in a big way, twenty-two-year-old Thiago Saporito had his biggest success in the 2014-15 Premier Play season with Pro Tour success, team accomplishments, and Platinum.
It has been a remarkable year for him. Starting off the season with a semifinals finish at Pro Tour Khans of Tarkir was a very big deal, and it immediately put Saporito in the running for one of the seats in the World Championship awarded to the top two Pro Point earners in the Latin American geo-region. This was a start that was even further improved when he and the other top Pro Point earner, friend and teammate Willy Edel, succeeded on reaching Sunday play as Team Brazil in the 2014 World Magic Cup.
Fast forward to May of this year. Hall of Famer and Brazilian pro Paulo Vitor Damo da Rosa was coming off of a very successful April and May, and had suddenly propelled himself to Platinum and into the front of the race for a Latin American seat. Suddenly, Saporito and teammate Edel were in jeopardy. One of them was likely to lose their seat.
It wasn't until the Saporito's ninth place finish, followed by no major action from Edel at Pro Tour Magic Origins, that solidified Saporito's invitation to this prestigious event, as the torch passes from one generation of Brazilian Magic to the other. Now, the young Brazilian pro will be competing in his first World Championship event.
2015 World Championship Competitor Thiago Saporito
But let's take a look before that, when Saporito was getting his first taste of Magic and the Pro Tour.
"My brother introduced me into Magic when I was eleven years old," Saporito recollected. "But we only used to play at the school with some friends. I started playing a lot of tournaments in 2005 when we discovered a local store in our city."
The spark ignited early for Saporito as he began to dive deeper into the game's tournament scene. Eventually, the young Magic player finally earned a qualification to the Pro Tour. For Saporito, the trip was a groundbreaking one.
"My first Pro Tour was in 2008," Saporito remembered. "It was Extended in Berlin, and I was fifteen-years-old. I was too young and too nervous. Honestly, I wasn't expecting to do well—and I only finished 2-4—but I was very happy to play against the greatest players in the world. It was the first time I left Latin America in my life, too. It was a sweet memory!'
The journey was a big one for him, and it's obviously far from the last time that Saporito ever left his home country. Now, Saporito travels to each Pro Tour, putting up solid finishes and building his already growing Magic resume as one of Brazil's rising stars.
And as one of those pro players, part of a new generation of Brazilian Magic, Saporito will have the chance to show what he's got on Magic's greatest stage.
The 2015 Magic: The Gathering World Championship takes place in Seattle, Washington, during PAX Prime on August 27, 28, and 30. To learn more about this year's competitors, head over to the 2015 World Championship Competitors page, and check back every weekday leading up to the World Championship for new profiles on each of this year's competitors.