Posted in Event Coverage on March 16, 2015

By Adam Styborski

Stybs has played Magic the world over, writing and drafting as part of the event coverage team and slinging Commander everywhere his decks will fit.

Bill Tsang was in an enviable spot. By reaching the Top 8 he qualified for Pro Tour Magic Origins in Vancouver, Canada. As one lone remaining Canadian of the event his travel partners gave him some good-natured hassle as the match got underway, sharing that Tsang had slept throughout the long drive down. “He was well-rested for this tournament,” one said.

But there was plenty of wear from the challenges he had faced thus far.

The number twenty-one-ranked Andrew Cuneo was looking to win the first Grand Prix of his long career, having found just a finalist slot in Lincoln in 2012. After dispatching the storied and talented Yuuya Watanabe in the quarterfinals in a decisive match, Cuneo looked well-positioned to advance further.

The Decks

Tsang’s deck was made to take advantage of the worst opponents could offer. With multiple copies of Act of Treason and Collateral Damage to go along with, his aggressive deck topped out with Icy Blast and other potent removal to cleave a path to victory.

Cuneo’s deck was using similar colors and aggression but leaned on a longer game. With Warden of the Eye to bring back powerhouse cards like Jeskai Charm and a surprising Howl of the Horde, Cuneo used evasive creatures and burn into a deadly one-two combo to win games.

The Games

Cuneo led off with a morph on turn three, which Tsang wasted no time clearing with Bathe in Dragonfire. Summit Prowler and Hordeling Outburst gave Tsang a larger presence against Cuneo’s long morph that followed, but with five mana up on Cuneo’s side Tsang used Singing Bell Strike to clear the way.

Bill Tsang raced against Andrew Cuneo, and used Falter-effects to get the job done.

Mastery of the Unseed gave Cuneo a way to make a blocker anyway, and one Goblin token was eaten. On his next turn, Tsang unleashed the full fury of this deck with Act of Treason into Icy Blast that left Cuneo without any ways to block. Tsang overran the first game from there.

The second game was a similar race, with Valley Dasher punching in against Cuneo’s Wandering Champion. Creatures traded back and forth after that, but Cuneo’s Watcher of Roost looked to tip the race in his favor.

Andrew Cuneo could prepare for Icy Blast, but multiple Act of Treason was an act from Bill Tsang that couldn’t be followed.

At least it looked favorable until back-to-back copies of Act of Treason with a Collateral Damage in between handily took the game away for Tsang.

“So many Act of Treason,” Cuneo said in surprise. “Good luck in the finals.”

Tsang shook his hand. “Thanks.”

Bill Tsang defeated Andrew Cuneo, 2-0.

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