Draft Report: Yuuki Ichikawa

Posted in GRAND PRIX TAIPEI 2014 - COVERAGE - EVENTS on July 27, 2014

By Chapman Sim

Yuuki Ichikawa is one of the rising stars of Japan and has recently proven himself by making the Top 4 at Pro Tour Journey to Nyx. Nabbing 22 Pro Points from that event alone, also picked up 3 Pro Points each from Pro Tour Theros, Grand Prix Shizuoka and Grand Prix Nagoya, putting him at a grand total of 31.

Now that he is qualified for Pro Tour 2015 Core Set in Portland, Ichikawa was in the search for just one Pro Point today in order to lock up Gold Level for the next season. He went 8-1 yesterday in the Sealed Deck portion and found himself in Pod 1.

Booster One

Stab Wound, Elvish Mystic and Lightning Strike were staring down at him in his first booster and his color preference immediately surfaced. He went with the reliable red common and followed that up Welkin Tern and Jorubai Murk Lurker. Into the Void was quickly snapped up as a 5th pick, putting Ichikawa in blue. However, it was the second copy of Jorubai Murk Lurker that would most likely solidify him in Blue Black.

1

Lightning Strike (Stab Wound, Elvish Mystic, Titanic Growth)

2

Welkin Tern (Blastfire Bolt, Rummaging Goblin)

3

Jorubai Murk Lurker (Hammerhand, Living Totem, Frost Lynx)

4

Peel from Reality (Amphin Pathmage)

5

Into the Void (Void Snare, Mind Rot)

6

Jorubai Murk Lurker (Frost Lynx, Child of Night, Carrion Crow)

7

Research Assistant (Necrobite, Crippling Blight)

8

Krenko's Enforcer (Caustic Tar)

9

Amphin Pathmage

10

Negate

11

Witch's Familiar

12

Witch's Familiar

13

Mind Rot

14

Foundry Street Denizen

Booster Two

Ichikawa's second booster was unspectacular and he could only pick up Child of Night as a first pick. Quickling quickly joined his pile, as did Zof Shade and Turn to Frog. He snapped up a Perilous Vault without much thought, and also a pair of Rummaging Goblins and Evolving Wilds for a potential splash.

1

Child of Night (Coral Barrier, In Garruk's Wake)

2

Quickling (Bronze Sable, Krenko's Enforcer)

3

Zof Shade (Twingrove, Void Snare)

4

Turn to Frog (Encrust, Divination)

5

Rummaging Goblin (Hot Soup)

6

Welkin Tern

7

Evolving Wilds

8

Sacred Armory

9

Rummaging Goblin

10

Hydrosurge

11

Hydrosurge

12

Thundering Giant

13

Chronostutter

14

Vineweft

Booster Three

Ichikawa continued to enhance his deck with double Covenant of Blood (one of his favorite black commons) and further improved his mana base with two more Evolving Wilds, making his three color control deck very real. The Mercurial Pretender which he opened tabled around and with Necrogen Scudder and Amphin Pathmage, he was not short on win conditions if he managed to stay alive.

1

Covenant of Blood

2

Covenant of Blood (Into the Void)

3

Necrogen Scudder (Encrust)

4

Sign in Blood (Festergloom)

5

Evolving Wilds (Amphin Pathmage, Void Snare)

6

Void Snare (Sign in Blood, Mind Rot, Witch's Familiar)

7

Amphin Pathmage (Grindclock, Rummaging Goblin, Witch's Familiar)

8

Evolving Wilds (Jalira, Master Polymorphist)

9

Mercurial Pretender (Statute of Denial)

10

Void Snare

11

Mind Rot

12

Miner's Bane

13

Profane Memento

14

Staff of the Mind Magus

"Jorubai Murk Lurker is so good. You can't have a Blue Black deck without it." I fully agree. Three mana for a 2/4 is has it passing the vanilla test with flying colors in the world of limited and the lifelinking ability is especially good in winning races.

Ichikawa is playing with 18 lands (including 3 Evolving Wilds) because his deck is a little mana hungry, pointing out Zof Shade and a pair of Amphin Pathmages as his win conditions for Blue Black.

"This deck isn't a 3-0 deck though. It is 2-1 at best. But I just need 1 Pro Point today so I hope its okay," Ichikawa shared. The last time I checked, he lost against Lee Hong and would need to win out to get his predicted score. I really hope he gets there too!