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2001 Portuguese National Championship Recap

Rui Oliveira

For the first time in Portuguese Magic we had a national championship with 96 players. In the weeks leading to the tournament itself this was widely discussed amongst the players and the first draft proved exactly why some were totally against it.

With so many inexperienced players some of the draft tables were completely surreal with insane decks and players scrapping to get twenty-three playable cards. Still, most of the name players survived the first scare and at the end of the day Pro Tour Tokyo Top 8 and 2000 National Champion Federico Bastos had nailed himself another highlight: He became the first player ever to 6-0 the draft portion of a Portuguese National.

For the second day the players still had a chance to steal a glimpse of the Standard portion of the U.S. Nationals, due to the time zone difference. Since Florida didn't generate any big breakthroughs most of the players stayed with their original choices.

From the top ten at the end of the first day, seven held on to reach the Top 8. The elite eight included Frederico Bastos, Felipe Girão and Helder Coelho from the nuclear core that was been dominating Portuguese Magic since the beginning. Pedro Bailadeira, Renato Graça, Dinis Maia, Gonçalo Nunes and Luis Sousa all represent a new generation of players that have been working hard to catch during the last years.

The deck choices of the Top 8 were fairly diversified and represented a typical trend in Portugal: tweaking known decks to suit a particular field. Bastos and Girão playing nearly identical versions of Herzog's Black-Red, Coelho reworking Valkyser's GWR Junk, Graça and Bailadeira using Blue-White Millstone, Nunes tweaking CounterRebels, Sousa adding Green to Price's new beatdown mono-Red and Maia bringing an unconventional Fires.

In the quarterfinals Renato crushed Bastos' dreams of a repeat championship, Bailadeira shoved Girão into the loser's bracket, Helder cracked his usual jokes while screaming past Gonçalo Nunes and Dinis' Fires was too much for Sousa to handle.

In the semis Renato had two very weird hands and spent most of his match against Dinis trying to fight back into the match. In the end he had to overextend and was taken down by an Obliterate. Dinis recovered a lot faster and grabbed a place in the finals. On the other table Helder again did his magic defeating Pedro.

While the other players battled in the loser's bracket, from where Luis Sousa and Felipe Girão emerged to play for the last national team spot, Dinis and Helder squared of in the finals. The first two games breezed through amongst many jokes and a lot of noise, with the crowd backing Helder and for a while it looked like "the Kid" was going to snatch the national title.

Well, what do you do when you are two games down, out of five, to the crowd's favorite? You buckle down and win the other three games! That is exactly what Dinis did, first silencing the spectators, and finally his opponent, pulling what many considered an unbelievable upset.

Congratulations to Dinis, Helder, Luis and Girão for making the team. If you can read Portuguese you can check out an online coverage at Clube Altamente.

Champion: Dinis Maia
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
4 Rishadan Port
1 Dust Bowl
3 City of Brass
2 Brushland
4 Karplusan Forest
2 Rith´s Grove
7 Forest
2 Mountain

3 Flametongue Kavu
4 Birds of Paradise
4 Llanowar Elves
4 Blastoderm
3 Shivan Wurm
3 Thornscape Battlemage
3 Aura Mutation
3 Fires of Yavimaya
3 Ghitu Fire
3 Saproling Burst
2 Urza´s Rage
2 Obliterate
3 Simoon
2 Tangle
3 Boil
3 Kavu Chameleon
2 Compost

Finalist: Helder Coelho
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
4 Brushland
2 City of Brass
4 Karpulsan Forest
2 Rith's Grove
4 Rishadan Port
2 Plains
4 Forest

4 Noble Panther
2 Serra Angel
2 Charging Troll
4 Thornscape Familiar
1 Shivan Wurm
3 Flametongue Kavu
3 Thornscape Battlemage
2 Llanowar Elf
4 Birds of Paradise
3 Armadillo Cloak
4 Wax / Wane
2 Urza's Rage
4 Tangle Wire
3 Voice of All
3 Blastoderm
4 Kavu Chameleon
2 Aura Mutation
3 Parallax Wave

Third Place: Luis Sousa
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
1 Darigaaz's Caldera
14 Mountain
4 Rishadan Port
4 Karplusan Forest

3 Firebrand Ranger
4 Flametongue Kavu
3 Kris Mage
3 Rage Weaver
2 Shivan Wurm
4 Skizzik
3 Assault / Battery
4 Seal of Fire
4 Chimeric Idol
3 Ghitu Fire
4 Urza's Rage
3 Disorder
1 Darigaaz's Caldera
2 Shivan Wurm
3 Thunderscape Battlemage
2 Earthquake
1 Obliterate
3 Blood Oath

Fourth place: Filipe Girão
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
6 Mountain
7 Swamp
4 Sulfurous Spring
4 Urborg Volcano
4 Rishadan Port

3 Blazing Specter
4 Phyrexian Scuta
4 Plague Spitter
4 Skizzik
3 Urza's Rage
3 Terminate
4 Duress
4 Vendetta
4 Dark Ritual
2 Void
1 Terminate
1 Void
3 Scoria Cat
2 Flametongue Kavu
2 Crypt Angel
2 Obliterate
2 Tsabo's Decree
2 Persecute

Frederico Bastos
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
4 Urborg Volcano
4 Sulfurous Springs
4 Rishadan Port
6 Mountain
6 Swamp

4 Blazing Specter
4 Phyrexian Scuta
4 Plague Spitter
4 Skizzik
4 Urza´s Rage
3 Vendetta
3 Terminate
4 Dark Ritual
4 Duress
2 Void
1 Blood Oath
2 Tsabo´s Decree
1 Yaghmoth´s Agenda
3 Cript Angel
2 Scoria Cat
2 Persecute
1 Terminate
3 Flametongue Kavu

Pedro Bailadeira
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
4 Adarkar Wastes
4 Coastal Tower
7 Plains
9 Island

2 Nether Spirit
4 Accumulated Knowledge
4 Fact or Fiction
2 Dominate
2 Foil
4 Counterspell
4 Absorb
4 Wrath of God
3 Last Breath
3 Dismantling Blow
2 Tsabo's Web
2 Millstone
3 Mageta, the Lion
1 Rout
1 Last Breath
1 Disenchant
1 Dominate
3 Misdirection
1 Tsabo's Web
1 Millstone
3 Meekstone

Frederico Bastos
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
4 Urborg Volcano
4 Sulfurous Springs
4 Rishadan Port
6 Mountain
6 Swamp

4 Blazing Specter
4 Phyrexian Scuta
4 Plague Spitter
4 Skizzik
4 Urza´s Rage
3 Vendetta
3 Terminate
4 Dark Ritual
4 Duress
2 Void
1 Blood Oath
2 Tsabo´s Decree
1 Yaghmoth´s Agenda
3 Cript Angel
2 Scoria Cat
2 Persecute
1 Terminate
3 Flametongue Kavu

Gonçalo Nunes
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
8 Island
8 Plains
4 Adarkar Wastes
4 Coastal Tower

2 Defiant Vanguard
4 Defiant Falcon
3 Lin Sivvi, Defiant Hero
1 Thermal Glider
2 Ramosian Sky Marshall
2 Ramosian Lieutenant
1 Disenchant
3 Wrath of God
3 Tsabo's Web
4 Counterspell
4 Absorb
1 Opposition
1 Repulse
3 Brainstorm
2 Dismantling Blow
2 Juntu Stakes
4 Gainsay
3 Voice of All
1 Wrath of God
1 Lawbringer
1 Lightbringer
3 Last Breath

Renato Graça
2001 Portugal National Championship

Main Deck
Sideboard
4 Adarkar Wastes
4 Coastal Tower
7 Plains
9 Island

3 Mageta the Lion
4 Absorb
4 Counterspell
3 Wrath of God
1 Rout
4 Fact or Fiction
4 Acumulated Knowledge
3 Tsabo's Web
3 Dismantling Blow
2 Millstone
2 Last Breath
1 Foil
2 Story Circle
2 Last Breath
1 Millstone
1 Rout
1 Wrath of God
2 Nether Spirit
4 Gainsay
2 Seal of Cleansing
2 Misdirection


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