Finals: Fabrizio Anteri vs. Matteo Moure

Posted in Event Coverage on August 16, 2015

By Craig Jones

English Grand Prix are very good for Fabrizio Antieri. He won Grand Prix Manchester last year, finished 33rd at Grand Prix Liverpool earlier this year, and was now just one match away from his third Grand Prix title here at Grand Prix London 2015.

His opponent, Matteo Moure, was playing in his first Grand Prix Top 8 and his performance here qualified him for his first Pro Tour. The trophy would look just as good on his mantelpiece.

I asked if they were playing the same decks. "Same base. A few cards different, but the same decks," said Anteri

The updated Abzan Aggro list based around Anafenza, the Foremost and Hangarback Walker has been the deck of the tournament, so it's fitting that the last two decks standing are versions of this archetype.

The first game started off slowly as both players led with come-into-play-tapped lands. This changed on turn three as Anteri dropped Urborg, Tomb of Yawgmoth and had the three requisite colored mana to bring Anafenza, the Foremost to the board. He followed with Hangarback Walker.

Moure tried to hold things up with Siege Rhino only to be hit with a devastating blowout. Anteri used Dromoka's Command to grow Anafenza up to 5/5 and forced the Rhino to fight a losing battle. An Abzan Charm for Moure's lonely Wingmate Roc on the following turn and that was the end of a very quick game one.

Fabrizio Anteri 1-0 Matteo Moure

Game two was a little longer, but ultimately even more brutal.

Moure started out with Fleecemane Lion. A Thoughtseize from Anteri revealed the Italian had plenty to come with Den Protector, Dromoka's Command and Sorin, Solemn Visitor in hand. Anteri took the Den Protector. He then went on to one-up Moure's Lion with Anafenza.

Moure brought Sorin and his Vampire minions to the table.

Another Thoughtseize from Anteri revealed Moure had found even more powerful cards—a second Den Protector and Elspeth, Sun's Champion. Again Anteri took the Den Protector.

What Moure's deck hadn't given him was more than four land. This was a problem when he needed to find six to bring Elspeth into play. Sorin exhausted his loyalty to bring a last Vampire token into play.

Anteri turned the screw with a Siege Rhino.

And you know the rule with Siege Rhinos, they always travel in herds. When Moure's deck failed to deliver a fifth land for another draw step Anteri knew the way was clear to go for the jugular. He added a second Siege Rhino to the board… and a budget Tasigur, the Golden Fang through delve.

The board was distinctly lop-sided, and with Moure still two land away from bringing in Elspeth, he was forced to extend the hand.

Fabrizio Anteri 2-0 Matteo Moure

"That's not my first final where I've drawn ten times better than my opponent. Can't say I'm not happy, but it's not much fun for them," Anteri said afterwards.

England continues to be good for Fabrizio Anteri as he picked up his second Grand Prix title on English soil and third title overall.

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