This weekend saw the penultimate (thank God) Standard constructed PTQ of the season for Austin, before London on the 5th of September, which i consider being unable to attend a bit of a blessing.
I was pretty set on playing faeries for the event, because i know faeries, i loved the deck that Wagz took to nationals, and i thought that with some minor changes it was the best deck to combat the u/w baneslayer deck, which, unfortunately, i wrongly assumed everyone would be playing.
This is the deck i took to the ptq for reference
4 x mistbind clique
4 x spellstutter sprite
4 x scion of oona
2 x shriekmaw
4 x bitterblossom
4 x broken ambitions
4 x cryptic command
3 x jace beleren
2 x firespout
4 x lightning bolt
4 x vivid creek
3 x vivid marsh
2 x reflecting pool
2 x cascade bluffs
2 x sunken ruins
4 x secluded glen
3 x mutavault
4 x island
1 x swamp
4 x anathemancer
2 x banefire
2 x sower of temptation
2 x deathmark
1 x shriekmaw
2 x firespout
2 x plumeveil
Overall i was really happy with the list, and i think any other day with some tighter play and a little bit of luck this could have easily gone the distance, despite a slight misevaluation of the metagame.
Round 1 - Nick playing ubr faeries
Its not great playing nick doroupolous at any stage of a tournament, because he is an incredibly tight player, and of course a close friend of the Leeds community.
Game 1 - I mull to 6 on the draw, but luckily Nick's 2 land bitterblossom hand begins to look increasingly bad when he fails to draw a 3rd land for 3 or 4 turns. By the time Nick has found more lands the damage has already been done, and now with a blossom of my own the game is soon over.
Game 2 - I bring in the anathemancers and banefire's for the shriekmaws, firespouts and 2 bolts. I was tempted to bring in the sowers for the other bolts, as i hear a lot of people say sower is good in the mirror, but i have never been a fan. I start on a fairly contentious mulligan, with 4 lands, 2 jace and an anathemancer. This was really tempting but i was pretty sure i could do better with 6, what do people think. Either way this game was a little closer than the last, but this time Nick found himself flooded, and having landed an anathemancer for 4, then bouncing and replaying for 7, a banefire was the only other spell i needed to resolve, which wasnt much trouble when i played it for lots.
Round 2 - Ben Heath - g/w little kid
urgh, another Leeds player in the first 2 rounds, i always seem to be driving miles to these events and playing the same guys i play every week at WNM. Also, i thought i was a slight dog in this match if ben got good draws, because it only really takes the resolution of either 1 spectral procession or cloudgoat ranger to really swing the game in his favour.
Game 1 - I kept a pretty decent 7 with broken ambitions, which i know is important in the match for keeping of Ben of his key spells. After some trading of resources, including me firespouting away a great sable stag and 3 spirit tokens and then countering another threat i felt like i was doing okay. Sadly, i couldnt stop the cloudgoat renger, and then windbrisk heights revealed another spectral procession, and sadly that was about all she wrote.
Game 2 - I kept a triple ambitions hand on the play, with a firespout backup. I countered the onslaught on spells Ben tried to resolve and firespouted some other stuff away, eventually allowing me to play the bitterblossom from my opener, and then i had double scion to make sure the clock wasnt long enough for Ben to come back from.
Game 3 - Annoyingly, losing the dice roll meant ben got 2 games on the play, at least, which i knew was pretty relevant in this match for him at least, my only hope being that he didnt have sick draws. Luckily, his first play was a great sable stag, which is fine by me, i think. I have double bolt and a firespout with a reflecting pool, so im ok with some beats as long as i can draw a vivid of cascade bluffs eventually. Sadly, i never draw the red source, and a second sable stag as well as a finks and cloudgoat ranger put me slightly on the backfoot, to say the least. I have 2 turns to draw the red source i have needed all game, with ben with 1 card in hand. Sadly, the red never comes, and im done.
Round 3 - Kevin Blake - Merfolk
Kevin seemed like a nice guy, and i havent met him before so its always good to meet new chaps. Annoyingly however, he's playing merfolk, which is another matchup where i think im a slight dog, which is made a lot harder if he wins the die roll, and if he gets a sick draw.
Game 1 - He wins the die roll.....and gets a sick draw.
Game 2 - i spend the entire game trying to play around sygg, eventually allowing me to firespout his team. Sadly he drew the backup sygg, which again i start the long process of trying to get him to tap out so i can remove it. However, playing round sage's dousing i manage to niggle away with bitterblossom tokens and use scions and cryptics to shorten his clock. An end of turn mistbind clique which gets dismissed allows me to cryptic in order to get my mutavaults through for the winsies.
Game 3 - sadly i lose this one, another close game which could have gone either way. Kevin draws double sygg again, which he shows me afterwards, althought he only needed 1 to get the job done.
Well, 1-2 is a bit of an improvement on the last 2 ptq's i have been to. I am looking forward to coming back to Leeds, because it is no surprise to see the guys who play the most and take it seriously getting good results, so i cant wait to get back to Leeds for some serious play before the next ptq season....o wait its sealed.
Congratulations to Rob Catton and Mick Edwards for top 8'ing, i have heard that both sadly didnt make it past the quarters but congratulations nevertheless.
After the ptq me and rik did a m10 draft, which Rik 2-1'd, while i drafted an ok deck but managed to crap out spectacularly nevertheless. I should have drafted straight r/b, but dipped into white because its my favourite colour in m10 and i cant help myself when i get a flyer or two.
Also in the draft was the arrogant one, and now i know why they call him that.
Im back in leeds around the 15th of september, i might come up for the play the game, see the world thing at Fanboy on the 12th, but i dont know yet. Ill see everyone when i get back in Leeds.
See you all soon
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