Semifinals: Yuki Matsumoto vs. Katsuhiro Mori

Posted in GRAND PRIX CHIBA 2015 on May 31, 2015

By Chapman Sim

Katsuhiro Mori is easily the most accomplished player in the Top 8 this evening. With fifteen Grand Prix Top 8s and four wins, the World Champion and three-time Pro Tour Top 8 competitor was the hot favorite to win this event to kick-start his triumphant return to the Pro Tour.

Yuki Matsumoto's single Grand Prix Top 8 was dwarfed by his opponent's resume, but he was no slouch himself. The fact that he even reached the semifinals is proof of his mastery in this exciting format. He has drafted a White Blue deck with aggressive creatures and his MVP will very easily be Mirran Crusader as you will find out very soon.

Regardless, both players are now qualified for Pro Tour Magic Origins in Vancouver and only two more wins separates these players from the glittering trophy!

The Games

Katsuhiro Mori kickstarted the match with Raise the Alarm and Culling Dais, but that wasn't quite as impressive as Yuki Matsumoto's Kitesail and Mirran Crusader. The combination of the two cards meant that Yuki Matsumoto quickly received a few (to be precise, six) of hits from the double-striking Human Knight.

Katsuhiro Mori was somewhat fortunate to find a solution to it, Blinding Souleater.

The bad news was that, it was way too late.

When Katsuhiro Mori tried to tap down the flying Mirran Crusader the next turn, Yuki Matsumoto trumped with Apostle's Blessing. Kitesail fell off his back due to him receiving "Protection from Artifacts", but that was inconsequential.

All Katsuhiro Mori had were artifact creatures. A happy coincidence for Yuki Matsumoto!

A timely Apostle's Blessing wins Yuki Matsumoto the first game.

Game Two

Mirran Crusader made it's opportune turn-three appearance once again and it quickly did short work of Katsuhiro Mori, who was most unfortunately stuck at two lands.

Yuki Matsumoto bolstered his army with Runed Servitor and Blinding Souleater, while all Katsuhiro Mori could do was add Sphere of the Suns to his side.

Katsuhiro Mori stumbles on mana, and couldn't stay afloat.

The writing was on the wall and Katsuhiro Mori saw little way out of the fix he was in but tried Terashi's Grasp on the opposing tapper anyway. Yuki Matsumoto was ready with Apostle's Blessing once more.

Yuki Matsumoto untapped and showed Katsuhiro Mori the Mighty Leap that would would eliminate him from the tournament. Mirran Crusader soared into the skies for ten damage on its own.

Katsuhiro Mori graciously extended his hand and wished Yuki Matsumoto good luck in his most important match of the day, the upcoming one…

Katsuhiro Mori 0—Yuki Matsumoto 2

Yuki Matsumoto defeats Katsuhiro Mori and advances to the finals!