Round 14: Peter Myrvig vs. Markus Joebstl
Denmark's Peter Myrvig has been to a few PT's, but is quick to point out that he has no major accomplishments to his name. But here he is, playing in the final round with Top 8 on the line. His deck of choice is Psychatog, and his version is unique in that it is running Upheaval.
His opponent is Austrian Markus Joebstl, a regular on the European Grand Prix circuit. Joebstl is running the German Reanimator deck that has already put John Larkin in the Top 8 of this even. Joebstl's top finish to date on the PT was 11th at PT Barcelona.
The soft-spoken Myrvig consulted with Head Judge Rune Horvik about the legality of offering a 50/50 prize split with his opponent in exchange for a concession. Myrvig is automatically in the Top 8 with a win, whereas Joebstl needs to win and hope his tiebreakers hold up. Rune was firm in his explanation that a split cannot accompany a draw or a concession, for that is considered collusion. If they want to split, they have to play the match out.
Myrvig furrowed his brow and stared at the ceiling for a few moments before shaking his head and saying he'd have to play it straight up with no splits. Joebstl accepted that decision and they shuffled up.
Myrvig won the die roll and drew an awesome opening hand for going first—Force Spike, triple Counterspell, Accumulated Knowledge, and two Islands. Joebstl had to mulligan once.
Joebstl's turn-1 Duress and turn-2 Mesmeric Fiend were both countered, and after a Careful Study, another Duress was also countered. Both players went straight to five lands, and Joebstl attempted a Thrashing Wumpus, the one affordable "fatty" in his deck. Myrvig Memory Lapsed it, and then Counterspelled it on the following turn.
Intuition got a four-power Accumulated Knowledge for Myrvig, and after the refill, the game was basically his. Fact or Fiction found a Psychatog, and Joebstl could do little except watch and dream about the Cabal Therapies and Shadowmage Infiltrators he'd be bringing in for game 2.
But all was not well for Mr. Myrvig. When Joebstl played a Duress, Myrvig tapped out to Wish for, remove via Psychatog, and recast Accumulated Knowledge. Joebstl took the Intuition, leaving him with a hand full of countermagic. He then Entombed a Gilded Drake and cast Reanimate twice, getting the Thrashing Wumpus back and stealing the Psychatog.
But fate was with Myrvig; he drew Boomerang off the top of his deck and took the Psychatog back. With Joebstl at only seven life, one attack with the toothy 'Tog ended the game.
Myrvig 1 – Joebstl 0
Joebstl sided in the patented anti-control package of Finkels and Therapies, but Myrvig started game 2 with another great grip, especially since Joebstl didn't draw a one-mana spell.
Joebstl's turn-2 Fiend was Force Spiked, and his turn-3 Fiend was Counterspelled. On turn four, he tried for an Infiltrator, but Myrvig had another Counter. On the next turn, Joebstl managed to resolve an Infiltrator, but Myrvig Intuitioned for AK's and the cast one for three, getting an early lead in the card-drawing race. He dropped a Psychatog.
Joebstl probably felt confident in his ability to get through with Finkel, especially since he had a Wonder in the graveyard thanks to an earlier Careful Study. But Myrvig had a Wonder in hand, and pitched it to the 'Tog, which blocked and devoured the poor Infiltrator. Joebstl was now woefully behind.
But again, Joebstl made a late-game push, Reanimating a pair of Mesmeric Fiends to reduce Myrvig's hand to a pair of Force Spikes and then Vampiric Tutoring for a Gilded Drake.
Myrvig drew a card and attacked for one with the 'Tog, but miraculously the card he drew was Counterspell. The Gilded Drake didn't resolve, and it didn't take long for the 'Tog to take the Austrian out.
Final Result: Myrvig 2 – Joebstl 0
With the amazing draws to win both games, Myrvig was destined to make the Top 8 of this tournament.