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London PTQ

Tampa, FL - July 24, 1999

Marc Elwinger

I was the Head Judge for the PTQ-London at Tampa Fl. (July 24, 1999) We had 95 players, Sealed deck, 7 round swiss, cut to top eight booster. I had 4 other Lvl 2 judges there, but unfortunately they were all playing. But I did have three other helpers.

First the easy problems:
7 people received incorrect deck lists. Every one was a card marked for an adjacent card on the list. The single most common question, how does trample work with protection. Came up 6 times.
One player with an abrasive personality upset his opponent to the point of asking the judge to do all the shuffling.
Two very expert players still misplayed the priority after damage is on the stack.
Two players needed help with humble and regeneration.
One player misplayed symbiosis on targets that were sacrificed.
One case of Soul Sculptor on the Shivan Phoenix. I ruled that the Sculptor removed the card text on the Phoenix so it did not return to the hand.

I partially misruled one call. A player wanted to use his Defense of the Heart and his opponent sacked a creature so the Defense would not be valid on resolution. I did a quick check of D'Angelos and I ruled that Defense must be valid both on announcement and on resolution (correct) which was the question, but I did not see the ruling that the sacrifice is on resolution and the player should not have lost it. I found this later and talked to both players and corrected any misunderstanding.

Third round a novice player reports he only has 39 cards in deck and wants to check his desk list. Deck List only has 39 cards. Because he reported the error himself and was inexperiances I ruled a game lose and he could add a basic land.

Player comes in and reports that he put his deck on the car top and the wind blew it across the parking lot. One card missing. Researched the correct card and helped him find one.

During deck check of two players at the top seed table. Player A was missing a card from his sideboard. We checked with the player and when he opened his card box, the missing card was stuck in the box. Initially no penalty. Player B had an extra card in his (41 card) deck. When approached he said he intended the card to be in the deck, and told me how much land and cards he had planned on, so missed markerd the deck list. . I ruled a match lose and double warning per guidelines. He returned about 5 minutes later and changed his story and said he left a sideboard card in his deck and that it penalty should only be a game lose and not use Sideboard for rest of event (according to his friends). I stuck by my ruling. Then he complains that Player A did not get any penalty, that the floor rules are not part of magic and that since they are only on the internet that should not apply. I shot down all these arguments but I gave Player A a game lose (per the guidelines penalty), since he still won the match.

Fifth round, I called time. (By this time I had a Lvl 2 helping) There were still about 8 games in progress. I went to watch two of the games and the other judge went to watch two others. Mine were done quickly and I went to check on another game just ending. Player C won the first game and Player D appeared to win this one, for a drawn match. As they signed the match result slip, Player D asks a question about targeting on resolution and I gave him the answer. He said that about 20 turns earlier he played it differently and that it probably changed the result of the game in his favor. He said he would like to call this game a draw, giving the match to player C. I said that would be his call, as I did not see the situation 20 turns ago. As I walked away he was changing the match result slip. Minutes later player C come up complaining that Player D changed his mind and kept the win after his friends talked him out of the draw. Player C's complaint was that Player D changed the match result after player C had signed it. I reminded player C that player D had also changed the slip to a draw after he had signed it and player C did not complain when it was in his favor. The result I saw on the table at the end of game was a win for Player D and that was the result. Player C (with player D) then returns complaining that neither of them had heard that time was called and played to many turns after time. If they had only played 6 turns they game would have been in progress and incomplete, but that they kept playing to a conclusion. My response was that if they did not hear time called then how did they know that they played to many turns. The results stand. Much pleading from player C for the rest of the event as he was in 10th place and we only cut the top 8.

Round 6. We posted the pairing and found a problem. (two match results were wrong, one by the computer operator) We told the players to wait. We fixed the problem and posted new pairing. We started the round with a few seats still empty. (My stated policy was that a player had 5 minutes before he lost the 1st game and 10 until the match was lost.). After about 3 minutes I noticed some played crowded at a corner table. I checked and found that two players did not know that we had repaired and were at the wrong table. I told them to quickly check the pairing and get to the correct tables and get started with the first game. At about 5 minutes a player E comes up and says his opponent has not shown up and he wanted his game win. I said yes. Then he goes back as his opponent player F (one of the two mispaired) is sitting down and they play one game. Then both players come up complaining. One says that he was sitting down to play per my instructions and the other, that I had awarded him a game win. Both were unfortunately correct as these statements were made at slightly different times. Player E won the game and wanted the match win. I ruled that since both players had some right on their side and that there was still 35 minutes left in the round, I wanted them to play the other games. I would rather have the match decided by their card play then a ruling of mine. Player F won the next two games and the match. Player E left in a huff saying he did not want to play magic anymore.

In this case I was at fault for giving correct answers to two different players at slightly different times but those instructions conflicted when they were applied.

Note that both of the last two problems were partially caused by not having a load speaker system in a room of 100 people. I may have to look into buying a portable system for these events where the hotel system is either missing or inadequate.

For the semi-final round of the top 8 (booster). With a Lvl 2 judge watching. Since I have nothing different in writing, my policy is that only the last game is not timed. A slow methodical player won the first game in about 25 minutes. The second game was very slow. The Lvl 2 was concerned that the player might be stalling. I was watching the other semi-final. I checked periodically and the play was slow but reasonable. The judge cautioned to maintain the tempo of play three times. The game ended as time was called. The match was 1-1. I needed a winner so I told both players they had 10 minutes and I would the game on life. The game ended during the 6 extra rounds in favor the slow player.

Marc Elwinger
Lvl 3 Florida

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