Fifteen Swiss rounds plus the quarterfinals had been played; now just this match and the finals remained. Naturally, only one of these players would advance beyond this point. On one side sat Zan Syed from Atlanta, Georgia, who had made the Top 8 at Grand Prix Miami earlier this year. Facing him was Korea's Kyoungsoo Kim, playing in his first Top 8.
Kyoungsoo had brought his own version of Red Aggro, with a curve going from Monastery Swiftspear via Eidolon of the Great Revel all the way to Thunderbreak Regent. Syed was playing a green-white deck built around Collected Company and the ubiquitous duo of Den Protector and Deathmist Raptor.
Elvish Mystic and Fleecemane Lion both fell to burn spells, but Syed's Deathmist Raptor and Courser of Kruphix stuck around and took a lead in the damage race. Kyoungsoo made up for his lack of early creatures with a pair of Thunderbreak Regents, but Syed's green-white deck was well capable of handling flying monsters.
First, Syed cast Dromoka's Command to have his Deathmist Raptor fight the one Dragon and put a +1/+1 counter on Courser of Kruphix, then he cast another Dromoka's Command to turn his Courser 4/6 and fight the other Dragon.
Following that, Kyoungsoo was out of gas, whereas Syed had the aforementioned Courser and added Mastery of the Unseen too. He generated some card advantage and gained some life, and soon Kyoungsoo packed up his cards for game two.
Kyoungsoo Kim 0-1 Zan Syed
For the second game, Kyoungsoo opened on Monastery Swiftspear, then grilled Elvish Mystic with Lightning Strike. Syed had no immediate follow-up, and by the time he cast Courser of Kruphix, he was already facing Thunderbreak Regent, soon followed by Flamewake Phoenix.
However, once again the green and white deck showed itself to be well equipped to remove threats: Plummet, Plummet, Dromoka's Command, Dromoka's Command … Kyoungsoo was out of creatures and gas, while Syed's deck only now really got going. Collected Company found Arashin Cleric and Kyoungsoo couldn't even hope to win via burn anymore. He weighed his chances, found none, and offered his hand in concession.
Kyoungsoo Kim 0-2 Zan Syed