Event Coverage

Playing by the numbers, Olivier Ruel has won his 5th Grand Prix, in his 26th Top 8, in his 107th Grand Prix. Having seemed destined to not even make it to the Top 8 after he lost the last round of the swiss to the undefeated Dutch champion Kevin Grove, the Frenchman drafted an aggressive Black/Red deck with a solid bank of removal spells and swept through the Top 8. Czech star Martin Juza was the gallant runner-up, but he lit up the second day of the tournament with his draft decks, only to fall at the final hurdle.

Having started the year by questioning his drive and motivation in Pro Magic, Olivier Ruel has bounced back in style here in Brighton. If you ever doubted his will to win then he showed you wrong here today, and if you ever doubted his enthusiastic love for the game then the sight of him jumping high in the air with glee when his name was announced as the final member of the Top 8 should set that concern to rest as well. With another glistening trophy in hand, Olivier Ruel is now only 9 Pro Tour Points behind Kai Budde in the lifetime standings, and seems certain to pass the German Juggernaut sooner rather than later.

So that was Grand Prix Brighton - a deserving showcase for the new M10 core set, and it has produced a deserving champion. Join us in Prague in September for more of the same!

Top 8 bracket


(1) Grove, Kevin

(8) Dictus, Mark

(4) Menten, Robbert

(5) Ruel, Olivier

(2) Stone, Dennis

(7) Kohl, Reinhold

(3) Juza, Martin

(6) Jackson, Joseph H


Dictus, Mark, 2-0

Ruel, Olivier, 2-0

Stone, Dennis, 2-0

Juza, Martin, 2-1


Ruel, Olivier, 2-1

Juza, Martin, 2-0


Ruel, Olivier, 2-0


  • by Tim Willoughby
    Olivier Ruel vs Martin Juza
  • by Rich Hagon
    Who Will Be Right On in Brighton?
  • by David Sutcliffe
    Olivier Ruel vs Mark Dictus
  • by Tim Willoughby
    Mark Dictus vs Kevin Grove
  • by Event Coverage Staff
    Top 8
  • by Event Coverage Staff
    Top 8
    Player Profiles
  • by Event Coverage Staff
    Day 2 Coverage
    Day 2's Feature Matches, Blogs, Podcasts, and More!
  • by Event Coverage Staff
    Day 1 Coverage
    Day 2's Feature Matches, Blogs, Podcasts, and More!
  • by Event Coverage Staff
    Info: Fact Sheet


1. Ruel, Olivier $3,500
2. Juza, Martin $2,300
3. Stone, Dennis $1,500
4. Dictus, Mark $1,500
5. Grove, Kevin $1,000
6. Menten, Robbert $1,000
7. Kohl, Reinhold $1,000
8. Jackson, Joseph H $1,000

pairings, results, standings


15 14 13 12 11 10

9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1


15 14 13 12 11 10

9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1


15 14 13 12 11 10

9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

Top 8 Player profiles

Name: Mark Dictus
Hometown: Berchem, Belgium
Age: 39
Occupation: Manager of the Outpost Game Centre (www.outpost.be)
Record in Sealed: 7-2
Record in Draft: 5-0-1
What was the MVP for you in the Sealed? Djinn of Wishes
What was your plan for the drafts? To sweep it!
Most OVERrated card in M10 Limited? Vampire Aristocrat
Have you tried our wonderful Fish & Chips yet? Nope - Mongolian BBQ and Thai!
Name: Dennis Stone
Hometown: Zedelgen, Belgium
Age: 18
Occupation: Student
Record in Sealed: 9-0
Record in Draft: 3-2-1
What was the MVP for you in the Sealed? Sleep
What was your plan for the drafts? None?
Most OVERrated card in M10 Limited? Act of Treason
Have you tried our wonderful Fish & Chips yet? Nope
Name: Robbert Menten
Hometown: Hasselt, Belgium
Age: 24
Occupation: Copywriter
Record in Sealed: 9-0
Record in Draft: 3-2-1
What was the MVP for you in the Sealed? BANESLAYAAAAA! (I think he means Baneslayer Angel)
What was your plan for the drafts? To get as many Looters as possible :-)
Most OVERrated card in M10 Limited? Act of Treason
Have you tried our wonderful Fish & Chips yet? No, it just looks terrible!
Name: Kevin Grove
Hometown: Groningen, Netherlands
Age: 24
Occupation: Student
Record in Sealed: 9-0
Record in Draft: 6-0
What was the MVP for you in the Sealed? Mind Shatter
What was your plan for the drafts? Avoid blue and green
Most OVERrated card in M10 Limited? Pyroclasm
Have you tried our wonderful Fish & Chips yet? Nah, I’m half-Irish so I get that stuff on my plate way too often anyway.
Name: Martin Juza
Hometown: Pilsen, Czech Republic
Age: 22
Occupation: Tourist
Record in Sealed: 8-1
Record in Draft: 4-1-1
What was the MVP for you in the Sealed? Guardian Seraph
What was your plan for the drafts? Draft what’s coming
Most OVERrated card in M10 Limited? I wish I knew!
Most UNDERrated card in M10 Limited? Siege Mastodon
Have you tried our wonderful Fish & Chips yet? I hate fish
Name: Olivier Ruel
Hometown: Lille, France
Age: 28
Occupation: Magic Writer
Record in Sealed: 8-1
Record in Draft: 4-2
What was the MVP for you in the Sealed? Djinn of Wishes/Mind Control
What was your plan for the drafts? Open good packs, get good uncommons - the commons are mostly filler in this format.
Most OVERrated card in M10 Limited? Hard to overrate cards in M10. Good cards have text, bad cards don’t.
Most UNDERrated card in M10 Limited? Hard to underrate cards in M10. Good cards have text, bad cards don’t.
Have you tried our wonderful Fish & Chips yet? I’ve had a lot of bad English food, but not that one I confess.
Name: Reinhard Kohl
Hometown: Koln/Bruhl, Germany
Age: 29
Occupation: Geologist Diploma
Record in Sealed: 8-1
Record in Draft: 4-1-1
What was the MVP for you in the Sealed? Overrun
What was your plan for the drafts? Taking the best cards and go for it.
Most OVERrated card in M10 Limited? Baneslayer Angel (but underrated in Constructed)
Most UNDERrated card in M10 Limited? Prized Unicorn (with Gorgon Flail)
Have you tried our wonderful Fish & Chips yet? Yes - 2 days ago on the beach!
Name: Joe Jackson
Hometown: Glasgow, Scotland
Age: 28
Occupation: PHD: Literature
Record in Sealed: 7-2
Record in Draft: 5-0-1
What was the MVP for you in the Sealed? Sleep. I didn’t get much over the week though!
What was your plan for the drafts? Solid curve, Baneslayer optional
Most OVERrated card in M10 Limited? Act of Treason?
Most UNDERrated card in M10 Limited? Deadly Recluse
Have you tried our wonderful Fish & Chips yet? Yes, very tasty!

Top 8 Decklists

by Event Coverage Staff

Kevin Grove

Download Arena Decklist

Mark Dictus

Download Arena Decklist

Martin Juza

Download Arena Decklist

Reinhard Kohl

Download Arena Decklist

Robbert Menten

Download Arena Decklist

Dennis Stone

Download Arena Decklist

Olivier Ruel

Download Arena Decklist

Joseph Jackson

Download Arena Decklist

Quarterfinals – Mark Dictus vs Kevin Grove

by Tim Willoughby

Kevin GroveKevin Grove comes into the top eight of Grand Prix having done what few before have ever managed – a perfect run through the swiss. Few have got through the swiss unscathed, but none have ever converted that into a win at GP level. In a funny sort of way, the pressure was really on for the Dutch National Champion, who is clearly on a tear at the moment.

Grove, on the draw, took a mulligan, and found himself staring down a turn two Veteran Armorsmith. Veteran Swordsmith followed the very next turn, while all that Grove had was a Mountain and a Swamp.

By the time that Grove found his third land he was on 11, and Dictus had added a Blinding Mage to his side of the board. The third land enabled a Goblin Artillery, but given that Grove was soon on 5, it didn’t seem likely to be too effective.

Grove had a plan, with Pyroclasm to kill the Blinding Mage, and then a Sparkmage Apprentice to finish Veteran Armorsmith. This plan was halted by Safe Passage though, and Dictus’ attacks dropped Grove to 2, before Razorfoot Griffin joined the team.

A Tendrils of Corruption killed the Griffin, and kept Grove around for one more turn, but when post-combat Dictus cast a Baneslayer Angel, that was plenty enough cause Grove to scoop up his cards.

Mark Dictus 1 – 0 Kevin Grove

Mark DictusFor the second game, Grove would be on the play, and seemed happy with his seven. This time it was Dictus turn to mulligan, which led Grove to sing a little Flemish mulligan song to the amusement of the crowd.

Dictus had a turn two Blinding Mage as the first play of the game, while Grove started with Warpath Ghoul. When Dictus tapped out for Veteran Swordsmith, it allowed the Ghoul to get stuck in, and Grove followed up with Canyon Minotaur. The Minotaur traded with Veteran Swordsmith, and was soon returned by Grove using Gravedigger.

Dictus’ ground plan was all defensive, with Palace Guard joining the team, and Razorfoot Griffin came along to allow for attacks in the air. Unlike the first game, attacks were less fast in coming. When Warpath Ghoul came in, Palace Guard blocked, and Kevin made an uncharacteristic mistake in playing Kindled Fury to try to kill off the blocker. He had forgotten though that Palace Guard is a soldier, and being helped by Veteran Armorsmith.

Grove was far from out of plays though. He had a Magma Phoenix, which dominated the board. It was now number one target to be blinded each turn, and presented Dictus wit a bit of a problem. Worse still, after Dictus cast a Siege Mastodon and passed, he saw a Diabolic Tutor from his opponent. With 8 lands in play, there was every likelihood that the black sorcery would find him something pretty special. The next play from Grove was a Vampire Aristocrat – quite the combo with Magma Phoenix, though admittedly one that would leave each player pretty short on creatures.

When Dictus attacked with Razorfoot Griffin, Grove sacrificed his team to Vampire Aristocrat, triggering Magma Phoenix to kill off much of Dictus’ board. He still had Palace Guard and Siege Mastodon, but wasn’t in as dominating a position as before. Dictus played Disentomb to get back his Blinding Mage, and cast it before the following turn casting Baneslayer Angel. Could this be it for Grove? He got back his Magma Phoenix, but it wouldn’t even prove that effective a blocker, with Blinding Mage around. If sacrificed to Vampire Aristocrat, the burn ability would hurt him more than Dictus.

Attacks from Dictus made the life totals 19 to 1 in Dictus favour. Grove drew his card for the turn, and dropped his hand on the table. For the first time in the tournament, and the last, he was defeated.

Mark Dictus wins 2 – 0, advancing to the semifinals!

Semifinals – Olivier Ruel (FRA) vs Mark Dictus (BEL)

by David Sutcliffe

Former Belgian National Champion, Mark Dictus, is no stranger to Top 8 situations, but for Olivier Ruel Brighton marked yet another stop in a monumental career. In fact, the French Hall of Famer suspected, Brighton could be his 100th ever Grand Prix! Sitting down with coverage supremo Richard Hagon, Olivier Ruel ticked off the events he had been to, trying to work out if he had hit his landmark 100th GP or not. In fact, he’d already passed it - and the pair came to the conclusion that Brighton was Olivier’s 107th Grand Prix!

Brighton isn’t Olivier’s hundredth Top 8, but it’s likely he’s not too flustered by the semifinal environment and seemed very relaxed - even pleased just to be there, given that he had only narrowly scraped into the Top 8 in the first place. His loss to kevin Grove in the final round seemed certain to have knocked Olivier out of the event, yet here he is - two matches away from another Grand Prix trophy!

“Attention Belgians. If you came on a bus, please leave - your bus is waiting outside and will leave without you.” boomed an announcement over the PA system, just as the players were about to begin.

“That’s my bus” said Dictus, “ah well - there goes all my supporters!”.

Then with a mighty high-five between the two players, this semifinal got underway.

Mark DictusOlivier Ruel’s Goblin Pikers were the first creatures to set foot on the battlefield, although they were immediately blocked down by a Dread Warlock. Ruel followed his Goblins with a Vampire Aristocrat while Dictus began to settle his defences behind a Blinding Mage - and the Wall of Fire that Ruel summoned up on his next turn seemed unlikely to cause the Blinding Mage any more trouble.

As Dictus passed a couple of turns, holding onto his sole white mana source for the Blinding Mage, Ruel developed his position with a Rod of Ruin and then a Mind Rot which stripped away... a Doom Blade and a Veteran Armorsmith. It looked as though Dictus was struggling badly for mana, but that Ruel was unable to capitalise on this fact as his only offense was still that sole Vampire Aristocrat, and it as still being tied up by the Blinding Mage.

A Siege Gang Commander threatened to change things in Ruel’s favor, however. The Commander hurled one his explosive Goblins at the Blinding Mage, but Dictus immediately responded with a Baneslayer Angel!

The Angel appeared majestic on the table. For about the three seconds it took Olivier Ruel to tap six lands and chargrill it with a Fireball. The Commander, Aristocrat, and their Goblin minions headed into the red zone to put Dictus on 8 life and a turn away from defeat.

Mark Dictus had a backup plan. In fact he had a backup Angel - Disentomb returned the Baneslayer to hand, and to play, but it was too late. Attacking with his creatures for a second time, Olivier Ruel was able to ignore the Lifelink ability of the Baneslayer by feeding his Vampire Aristocrat with the creature that the Baneslayer blocked, and with a little help from another explosive Goblin, he took a 1-0 lead in the match.

Do you remember that Mind Rot early in the game? And the Doom Blade that was discarded to it, when it seemed like Olivier was an almost mono-black deck? That Doom Blade would have solved Dictus’ problem with the Siege Gang Commander... on such small margins are Grand Prix Semi Finals decided.

Olivier Ruel (FRA) 1 - 0 Mark Dictus (BEL)

Given a ready supply of white mana in the second game, it was Mark Dictus who took to the offensive with a Veteran Armorsmith, Blinding Mage, and Razorfoot Griffin, while Ruel had a Seismic Strike for the Armorsmith and a set of trusty Drudge Skeletons, but only a single Swamp to regenerate with.

Dictus added a Palace Guard to his forces and attacked with all his creatures, dealing 4 damage to reduce Olivier Ruel to 11 in short order, but with a creature mix like that Dictus’ deck clearly wasn’t built for speed. The Belgian played his Baneslayer Angel, but once again Ruel paid it short shrift and had a Doom Blade handy, then played a Viashino and Wall of Fire to further hold off Dictus’ ground forces.

Dictus proved once again that a his Baneslayer Angel could return from the dead, and a Gravedigger thrust her back into the limelight, only for Ruel to pull a Fireball from his hand and barbecue her once again!

But while all this was happening and Ruel was busy holding back the Baneslayer threat, Dictus was continuing to get damage through from his other creatures - Ruel could block a couple of them each turn but damage kept bleeding through around the edges and his lifetotal was on the slide. 8 life remaining, now 6 life, now 4, now 3.

In desperation, lacking Swamps, Ruel was forced to Consume Spirit Dictus’ Razorfoot Griffin for a single point, then finish it off with a Rod of Ruin, going up to 4 and ensuring he would at least survive the next attack. Dictus turned his army sideways again, and Ruel dropped to just 1 life.

Consume Spirit you” Dictus said, revealing his X spell from hand.

“For how much?”

“Umm... 2?”

“That should do it”

Olivier Ruel (FRA) 1 - 1 Mark Dictus (BEL)

Olivier Ruel“Well you’ve cast 4 baneslayer Angels in two games... and I killed them all” Olivier said, as he sideboarded a few cards in for the third game, “that feels good. And I’m still alive.”

Swamp, Duress. Olivier Ruel got a good look at Dictus’ plans in the decider - Weakness, Stormfront Pegasus, Blinding Mage, and four lands. Taking the Weakness away, Ruel seemed to have little to fear from the remaining 6 cards.

Goblin Piker for Ruel

Stormfront Pegasus

Mind Rot from Ruel, further depleting Dictus’ options as he pitched two Plains.

Blinding Mage

Ignite Disorder, from Ruel there was an audible hiss from the crowd as that single spell from Hall of Famer killed both of Dictus’ creatures for just !

The Belgian recovered with a Warpath Ghoul, but that was immediately made to look second rate by Olivier Ruel’s Dragon Whelp. Dictus was a card down in hand, and a creature down on the table, all thanks to the Mind Rot and Ignite Disorder - both of which had traded 2-for-1. Dictus moved to stop some his lifeloss with a Tendrils of Corruption, killing Ruel’s Goblin Piker and leaving the board poised as a race between the Dragon Whelp and Dictus’ Warpath Ghoul and the lifetotals at 15-13 in Olivier’s favor.

Dictus played an Indestructibility onto his Warpath Ghoul and attacked - it was now 12-13 on life but Olivier was happy to accept the race and hit back with his Dragon Whelp before casting a Diabolic Tutor, and it was 12-8.

Dictus played a Serra Angel, and attacked with his Ghoul again to make it 9-8 but the card that Ruel had Tutored from his deck the turn earlier was a Doom Blade. That struck the Serra Angel out of the sky and cleared the way for the Dragon Whelp to attack again, setting the life totals at 9-4.

Dictus now had his back against the wall and had to hope to pull a solution for the Dragon Whelp with his next card... he pulled... he shook his hand... he extended his hand.

Olivier Ruel (FRA) 2- 1 Mark Dictus (BEL)

“How many Ignite Disorder?” Dictus asked, pointing to the crucial colour hoser that had wrecked his army in one swoop.

“Three in the board”

Olivier Ruel is in the final of Grand Prix Brighton!

Podcast - Who Will Be Right On in Brighton?

by Rich Hagon

It's time for the Top 8, and from OIivier Ruel in his 26th Grand Prix Top 8 to Martin Juza and more in their first, just one M10 Draft remains on what has been a massive festival of Magic here beside the seaside in glorious Britain, spiritual home of all that's right with the world. Fish and chips, David Beckham, the Queen, Queen...the list goes on, and in this show another name gets added to the list of European Grand Prix Champions. All the action, right between your ears.

Download MP3

Finals – Olivier Ruel vs Martin Juza

by Tim Willoughby

Olivier Ruel This is Olivier Ruel’s 26th Grand Prix top eight. He is batting close to 25% on making top eight at each Grand Prix he travels to. By Worlds it is possible that he will be ahead of Kai in lifetime Pro Points. Martin Juza is in his very first Grand Prix Top 8, in spite of having been close on many occasions. When he finally got in this time around, he seemed as excited as he had in Berlin when he hit top 8 at the Pro Tour. Now that the curse of the near miss in making it into top 8 has been broken, he just desperately wants to make it all the way and hoist a trophy.

Olivier won the flip and had a mulligan on the play. It was Juza who had the first play of the game, in Rampant Growth which enabled a Forest, an Island and a Swamp to be in play on his second turn. Olivier had a Terramorphic Expanse to make sure that he had both red and black mana, which he used to cast a Dread Warlock. He had a Weakness for Borderland Ranger.

“If you Unsummon your Ranger you are such a master” quipped Oli, as Juza tapped a single Island. He actually cast a Ponder, and after drawing one card, he used a second Rampant Growth to shuffle his deck.

Juza had rapidly ramped up to an impressive amount of mana, but wasn’t doing much with it, while Dread Warlock rumbled in. Rod of Ruin entered the battlefield for Olivier, who was feeling happy at 20 life to his opponent’s 12.

Olivier had the next threat, in Inferno Elemental, with one red mana up. This caused Juza to pull the trigger with a Mind Control to steal the powerful 4/4. He was still under the cosh from Dread Warlock though, and looked on as Doom Blade from Oli killed off the Elmental, leaving him with his 0/1 Ranger, a lot of land, and little else.

Juza had a Fireball to kill off Dread Warlock, and deal 3 to Olivier, who passed, content to sit on his Rod of Ruin. He had a Consume Spirit to take Juza to just two, and Juza couldn’t help but laugh as he scooped up his cards.

“Really? How did this happen?”

“Martin... Good Game.”

Olivier Ruel 1 – 0 Martin Juza

Martin Juza After the largely creatureless affair of Game 1, both players seemed keen to have a more ‘normal’ game of Magic. Juza was on the play for Game 2, and was quick to keep his seven.

Both players started on a Terramorphic Expanse, and while Juza’s fetched a Mountain, Olivier needed a Swamp. Juza followed with a Forest and no play, while Olivier had Mountain. Everyone had their colours of mana, but creatures were a little slower. Juza dug with Divination, while Olivier had a Viashino Spearhunter.

Juza found a creature in Prized Unicorn, but was behind a little when Olivier landed a Howling Banshee. Awakener Druid from Juza allowed a big attack to bring the life totals to 15 for Juza, 13 for Ruel. Olivier cracked Juza down to 10, before playing Diabolic Tutor. His 3 best targets were Deathmark, Duress and Siege-Gang Commander. After a little thought, he fetched a Deathmark, and killed off Juza’s Forest with it. Juza made the life totals 10 each, and played a Wind Drake. It was all for nought though, as Ruel had attacks plus a final Fireball for five to end things.

Olivier Ruel wins 2 – 0 to become Grand Prix Brighton Champion!