Quarterfinals 1: Chye Yian Hsiang (White Red) vs. Cheung Lap Chung (White Red)
Chye Yian Hsiang from Malaysia is playing in his very first Top 8 despite having come in at 9-0 in Day 1 many times. He has drafted an aggressive White Red deck, complete with triple Topan Freeblade, double Grasp of the Hieromancer, double Enshrouding Mist and Iroas's Champion.
His opponent Cheung Lap Chung is also a first-timer and will be playing a mirror match.
Chye Yian Hsiang (left) and Cheung Lap Chung (right)
Chye's triple Topan Freeblade reared their ugly heads and quickly put Cheung under immense pressure. When Cheung presented Yoked Ox to block, Grasp of the Hieromancer paralyzed it. Suppression Bonds on the enchanted Topan Freeblade put a stop to that and Cheung was able to counterattack with Volcanic Rambler.
However, Cheung was at a precarious three life and all Chye had to do was to wait for his 5th land to unleash Chandra's Fury for the win.
Cheung's start was pretty nice, curving out with Mage-Ring Bully, Cleric of the Forward Order, and Iroas's Champion. Chye's board was equally impressive, comprising Topan Freeblade enchanted with Grasp of the Hieromancer, Ghirapur Gearcrafter, and Pia and Kiran Nalaar.
Enshrouding Mist on a blocker took care of the double striking Soldier and Chye seemed to be ahead in the race. Cheung noticed that, and was forced to expend Swift Reckoning and Fiery Impulse on the remaining Thopters.
Chye Yian Hsiang 2 – Cheung Lap Chung 0
Quarterfinals 2: Liu Yuchen (Black Green) vs. Wu Songwei (Black Red)
Liu Yuchen from China is the most experienced player remaining, having made the Top 8 two previous times. He has a speedy Black Green deck that kickstarts with a quad of Shambling Ghouls. Liu will support his beatdown strategy with three Titanic Growth, two Wild Instincts and a pair of Reave Souls.
Liu will have to defeat fellow countryman Wu Songwei if he wanted to advance. Wu's deck is highlighted by Scab-Clan Berserker, Cruel Revival, and Exquisite Firecraft and also has the nifty combo of a pair of Returned Centaurs to complement Shadows of the Past.
The first game was rather one-sided, largely because Wu's deck was a little less streamlined and much clunkier than Liu's. To make matters worse, Wu kept a two Swamp hand on the play and failed to find a third land or his second color.
Oh well! Liu's up one game just like that!
Liu Yuchen 2 – Wu Songwei 0
Quarterfinals 3: Lim Victoriano (Blue Green) vs. Yam Wing Chun (Blue Red)
Gold Pro Yam Wing Chun will need to quickly end games before these bombs overwhelm him. Thankfully Yam's deck was focused, featuring Thopter Spy Network, Molten Vortex, and a trio of each Faerie Miscreants and Aspiring Aeronauts to soar through the skies.
Outland Colossus made an appearance quickly but Yam was ready with a horde of chump blockers, thanks to Aspiring Aeronauts and friends. When Yam added Skaab Goliath to the board and attacked with it, Lim did a triple block and both 6-powered monsters hit the bin.
However, Yam ran out of gas and his tiny 1/1 fliers were unable to race Lim's green fatties.
Lim led with Jace, Vryn's Prodigy while offering Hitchclaw Recluse and Tower Geist to deter Yam's horde of fliers, which included five Thopters thanks to Thopter Engineer, double Aspiring Aeronauts, and Foundry of the Consul.
Lim turned up the heat with Outland Colossus and Yam quickly found himself in the unfortunate situation where he was unable to attack yet forced to chump-block. To make matters worse, Lim tutored up a second copy of the irritating Spider with the help of Woodland Bellower.
Yam did have Claustrophobia to tap down Outland Colossus and tried to use Molten Vortex to finish off Woodland Bellower. A timely Mizzium Meddler foiled the last activation and Yam's bag of tricks was depleted. Despite also having Thopter Spy Network, he had no way to stop Jace, Vryn's Prodigy from reaching its ultimate ability.
Lim Victoriano 2 - Yam Wing Chun 0
Quarterfinals 4: Ang Jan (Red Green) vs. Kwok Suen Wang (White Green)
Ang Jan is a former Philippines National Champion and was equipped with a Red Green beatdown deck featuring double Acolyte of the Inferno, double Boggart Brute as well as mean monsters such as Embermaw Hellion and Zendikar Incarnate.
Kwok Suen Wang will need to find a way to survive the early onslaught if he wanted to take over the game with Nissa's Revelation, Zendikar's Roil, and Gideon's Phalanx. His White Green midrange deck is a unique take on the format and he has found ways to accelerate into his late game cards with Leaf Gilder, Meteorite and Nissa's Pilgrimage. Is it possible that this strategy was workable?
Embermaw Hellion clinched Game 1 for Ang but Kwok quickly equalized the score by punishing Ang's mana troubles in Game 2.
In the rubber game, Leaf Gilder, Acolyte of the Inferno, and Zendikar Incarnate quickly put Kwok under fire. Meteorite was Kwok's solution to the renowned Acolyte of the Inferno but sadly found no way to suppress the ballooning Zendikar Incarnate and a freshly summoned Orchard Spirit.
Ang Jan defeats Kwok Suen Wang with his Red Green deck and advances to the semifinals.
Ang Jan 2 – Kwok Suen Wang 1