Round 11 Feature Match: Dave Williams (United States) vs. Rob Dougherty (United States)
by Sideboard Staff
Dave had drafted an aggressive 4 colour green deck (b/w/g/r) whilst Rob managed to make a 2 colour black/blue deck which also contained quite aggressive creatures such as Urborg Drake and Urborg Shambler, but also contained some control in the form of Repulses and Recoils.
Dave wins the roll and elects to play first leading with a very punchy hand, making a second turn Yavimaya Barbarian which looks like it may be ineffectual when a Metathran Zhombie comes into play on the other side, but his turn three dealt with the regenerator nicely as Dougherty was tapped out: He makes a Quirion Sentinel and produces one 'purple' mana due to its special ability, taps his third land (a mountain) and casts a Scorching Lava on the Zhombie. Unfortunately for Williams the ground stalls up immediately when Rob casts a Reckless Spite and his Frenzied Tilling is ineffectual as his oponent has more than enough land in hand.
The game looks as if it is swinging heavily in Dougherty's favour when he makes a Phyrexian Slayer and comes over in the air and Dave seems to make a mistake when he lays an eighth land and casts a Ghoham Djinn because he knows his opponent has Recoils. Sure enough Recoil is cast and the Djinn bounces back to his hand, but he only has one other card now...a Ghitu Fire! - so he discards the Djinn. Rob then starts coming over for 4 with a Sky Weaver and the Slayer and takes Williams down to 10 who retorts by Soul Burning his opponent for 4 (but only gaining 1 life himself because red mana was used). Dave's Play here is working on the assumption that he will draw a ninth land in his next turn so he can cast Ghitu fire to finish his opponent off exactly to 0. Sure enough he draws the land and wins game 1.
The first game took hardly any time at all as both players were playing at a frenetic pace.
This game saw Rob going first with a vicious start, making an Urborg Drake and Urborg Shambler whilst all Dave had was a Thornscape Apprentice and no white mana to use it's Master Decoy ability. The beats kept coming as Dougherty Soulburned a Thunderscape Master, cast Defiling Tears on the Thornscape Apprentice (Dave had managed to bring a plains into play) and then made another 2/2 black flyer after his Shambler had traded with a Serpentine Kavu. Dave Drew nothing that could deal with the flyers and died.
Dave 1 Rob 1
Dave chose to play again and begrudgingly kept his hand, but Rob had to mulligan down to five. Despite this, the game ended up being a ferocious one as Williams' slow draw allowed his opponent back into the game. Sure enough Dougherty made the first creature - an Urborg Phantom, and followed that up with a Metathran Transport, but then stalled on 3 land for a turn. Meanwhile Dave made a Phyrexian Slayer and a Serpentine Kavu, choosing to block the 3/1 Phantom with his Slayer rather than the Serpent because he knew his oponent might have a Defiling Tears and he wanted to serve with his Kavu.
Rob managed to keep life advantage for the majority of the game though as he managed to Repulse the Serpent mid-attack phase, then drop his Urborg Shambler and a 3/3 Artifact Attendant. This is where Dave made his match winning play: he cast explosive growth on his Kavu then Breath of Darigaaz killing all but his now 6/6 creature and the 1/3 flyer and swung across to leave the life totals at Williams 7, Dougherty 6.
Rob, knowing he had a Metahran Zombie in hand, chose to make a Phyrexian Reaper and attack with his 1/3 flyer to take them to 6 each, risking not blocking the 4/4 Kavu taking him down to 2 life. Unfortunately for him Dave then made a Thunderscape Master, and Rob could find no answer.
Williams wins 2-1