Report – France Vintage Championship Top 8

Thanks to Belcherized and Maitre Yoda (two French players), the 2010 France Vintage Championship was held this past weekend. I’d like to begin my report by thanking and congratulating them for the organization of the tournament and their support of Vintage. We had a great weekend, and even though it was a Sunday, 69 players came here to compete for the chance to be the new French Vintage Champion. Last year, I lost in the Finals against Camille Fenet in a Selkie mirror match. This year, as I didn’t want to play creatures anymore I decided to play the deck I played at Bazaar of Moxen 4 (BOM).

Check out my decklist and the report after the break!


[Business]4 Force of Will (30)
Mana Drain
Chain of Vapor
Ancestral Recall
Senseis Divining Top
Time Walk
Thirst for Knowledge
Fact or Fiction
Mystical Tutor
Vampiric Tutor
Imperial Seal
Merchant Scroll
Demonic Tutor
Empty the Warrens
Tendrils of Agony
Yawgmoths Will
Jace, the Mind Sculptor

[/Business] (0)

[Mana Sources] (26)
Dark Ritual
Black Lotus
Lotus Petal
Mana Crypt
Mox Emerald
Mox Jet
Mox Ruby
Mox Sapphire
Sol Ring
Library of Alexandria
Tolarian Academy
Scalding Tarn
Polluted Delta
Underground Sea
Volcanic Island
Island[/Mana Sources]
[Sideboard]1 Pyroblast (14)
Mindbreak Trap
Ingot Chewer
Hurkyls Recall
Yixlid Jailer
Nihil Spellbomb
Lightning Bolt

I’m sure a lot of card choices can be discussed, but all in all I’m quite happy with the decklist and especially with the sideboard. In the future I’ll make a primer on this list if people are interested in reading more about it. So on to the action from the tournament!

I apologize if I’ve missed a name or misspelled something, but I cannot remember all of my opponent’s names at the moment. But all of my opponents were a real pleasure to play against, so thank you all.

Round 1 vs. player with Bant/Noble Fish
Game 1: My opponent begins with Tropical into Noble Hierarch, and I see what the deck I’m up against. I know how to play against this well because I’ve played Bant in Vintage for about a year. The game proceeds on and I have no gas and draw into nothing, and a few turns later I finally died to a 5/6 flying Trygon Predator (thanks to Exalted triggers).

Game 2: This game goes better, as I can play some spells and Sensei’s Divining Top helps me to dig for some business to use. My Mana Crypt flips and his Trygon start doing damage to me, and when I’m at 5 life he drops a Rhox War Monk. So I have to win this turn! Not a problem though, as I just have to resolve Yawgmoth’s Will and the game is done. So on his end step I cast Mystical Tutor and search up Yawgmoth’s Will. After this he has an additional response before his turn ends. He sacs a fetchlands and searches out an Underground Sea (?) and then play Extirpate! WTF!? Extirpate in Bant! OK, so I shuffle my Yawg Will away and then for the turn I draw an Impulse, play it, and the gods have smiled upon me. The fourth card down is Yawgmoth’s Will! I play it and win in the turn, and then resume breathing. 🙂

Game 3: This is a bit slower game. He starts with Tundra and passes. I play Volcanic Island then pass it back to him. He played a Trop, then Hierarch, then go. On my turn 2, I draw Library of Alexandria and play it with a full hand of seven. On his turn he plays a Wasteland and decides to destroy…Volcanic Island. OK! I ride Library to victory by drawing a ton of extra cards and easily won the game.

That was hot, but it’s just the warm up!
Matches 1-0, Games 2-1

Round 2 vs. player with Manaless Ichorid
Game 1: He mulligans to 6 cards on the play and leads with Unmask, then Chalice of the Void set to 0, then plays Bazaar of Bagdaad. OK then! He uses Bazaar to discard 3 Dredgers on my end step, then cycles Street Wraith to accelerate the Dredging. On my turn I play Mox and Underground Sea. On his turn 2 he Dredges some more, then casts Dread Return to bring back Angel of Despair, which comes into play and blows up my Underground Sea. I draw for my turn seeing nothing good and concede.

Game 2: He does Dredge things and discards a Darkblast. I then play Yixlid Jailer to which he draws no solution, and we move on to the deciding game.

Game 3: I keep a hand of Mana Crypt, Nihil Spellbomb, Dark Ritual, Imperial Seal, Force of Will, Fact or Fiction, and Massacre. No mana sources besides Crypt, but I can use Crypt to cast and activate Spellbomb on the first turn. He opens with Chalice of the Void for 0 and I Force of Will it. He then Unmasks away my Spellbomb. OK, I think we’re done here. He has no Dredgers on his Bazaar though, and I find mana to play Imperial Seal for Yixlid Jailer and win!
Matches 2-0, Games 4-2

Round 3 vs. Emerick with GroATog
Quirion DryadGame 1: I can’t remember all of the details of this one, but I know I lose 5 out of 6 Mana Crypt rolls, and that is enough to kill me at the beginning of my big turn I’ve been planning. 🙁

Game 2: I mulligan to 6 cards and lead with Ancestral Recall, but it gets Forced. His first turn is Mox Emerald, Mox Sapphire, Underground Sea, Mystical Tutor into Ancestral Recall, and then cast Time Walk. On the Time Walk turn he draws and casts Ancestral, then Quirion Dryad, Preordain, then another Dryad and passes. I don’t feel like this is going well. On my turn, I will play land, Mox Jet, then Duress him and dump the Tinker sitting in his hand. Next turn he plays another Dryad which I Mana Drain, then he attacks me for 3 damage and passes. On my next turn I play Massacre to destroy both of his Dryads! They were only 2/2 and 1/1, and I’m back baby! Next turn he played Fastbond, then Gush, but cannot do anything else. I force through a Yawgmoth’s Will a few turns later and won.

Game 3: I cannot remember this game very well, but he doesn’t do much to disrupt me and I easily won it.
Matches 3-0, Games 6-3

Round 4 vs. Michael Lellouche with Madness
This is an opponent I really don’t want to play against because he is a great player and totally in tune with his deck. He finished 3rd (out of 348 players) at the last Bazaar of Moxen in May. His deck also has a good amount of counterspells (Force of Will, Spell Pierce, Spell Snare) and is very fast, so it will be tough.

Game 1: What a true game of Vintage this was. By my third turn we had both resolved our Ancestral Recalls, both countered two things, and he had Darksteel Colossus on the table (thanks to Tinker), and on my turn 3 I am playing my Yawg Will! Even though I played Rebuild to wipe his Colossus out I still lose a few turns later to his smaller attackers. I lose this game, but I feel happy for playing so many broken cards! That is Vintage!

Game 2: He sides in 4 Red Elemental Blast against me, and I just can’t do anything and lose this one too.

Well, I’d rather lose against someone like Michael, who has all the merits of being the French Vintage Champion, instead of losing against a random player. Michael would go on to win this tournament and is now the new Vintage Champion of France, which fits right in with his other strong performances all year.
Matches 3-1, Games 6-5

Ronde 5 vs. Alban with Oath
Game 1: He begins with Forbidden Orchard, Mana Crypt, and Oath of Druids, which I am able to Force. On his turn 2 he again tries Oath, and I again Force it. On turn 3 he tries Tinker and I Mana Drain it! The game slows down from here and a few turns later I’m able to resolve Yawgmoth’s Will and finally won the game.

Game 2: My opening hand on the draw is Underground Sea, Mox Ruby, Black Lotus, Force of Will, Empty the Warrens, Dark Ritual, and Lotus Petal. That is super explosive but I’m very afraid of walking into Mindbreak Trap. He begins with Library of Alexandria and passes (with 6 cards in hand). I go all in and drop 10 Goblin tokens off Empty the Warrens, and it resolves! Yeah baby! He tries to Mystical Tutor for a solution, but I’m able to Force of Will it and he scoops. This leaves me one victory away from the Top 8.

The total length of those two games is 12 minutes, which gives me a chance to admire his wonderful deck. And what a deck it is! Most of his cards are altered and/or double signed by the artist and Richard Garfield. His Yawg Will is altered by Ron Spencer with a Lord of the Ring alteration and is the most beautiful card I’ve ever seen! I’ll try to post a photo soon.
Matches 4-1, Games 8-5

Round 6 vs. Julien with Jacerator
This sucks because my opponent is a good friend of mine and the loser will be out of Top 8 contention. We still both have one more round to make Top 8, so we take a chance and decided to intentionally draw (ID) and both go and all-in on the last round!
Matches 4-1-1, Games 8-5

Round 7 vs. Franck Adam with Tezz Vault
I am once again paired against another friend of mine, Franck Adam. I know him and he is very sympathetic and good natured, and I’m quite dissapointed to have to play against him for our last round which will eliminate one of us from the Top 8.

Game 1: We both mulligan to 6, and I begin with Underground Sea, Mox Sapphire, and pass with Mana Drain active and in hand. He leads with Mox Sapphire, Black Lotus, and Mind Twist for 3. I Mana Drain and he Forces back, emptying my hand and leaving him with 2 cards. I can’t recover and a few turns later I lose.

Game 2: He takes an early lead this game, but thanks to 3 Duresses from me I pick apart his hand and am able to resolve a lethal Yawgmoth’s Will to kill him.

Game 3: This one goes much like Game 2, with me Duressing away counters and and resolving the goods on my way to a Yawg Will fueled win. Have I mentioned my deck usually kills with Yawg Will?! 🙂

Three Vintage games full of broken plays, back and forth. Dude, that was amazing! I’m very happy for making Top 8 but sad for knocking out Franck, and at the end of the tournament I give him one of the prizes I won.
Matches 5-1-1, Games 10-5

Round 7 (Top 8 Quarterfinals) vs. Eddy Pereira with Jacerator
Dark ConfidantGame 1: He plays a Dark Confidant turn 1, which I attempt to Force, and he Forces back to resolve Confidant. On turn 2 he plays Tinker, and I again Force of Will and he agains Forces back! OK dude, you’re better than me! Just kidding, good games. 😉

Game 2: A very closely contested game in which he again leads with a turn 1 Confidant. This time it won’t be enough though, as I played a lot of Duresses and resolve Yawg Win to take a close one.

Game 3: So this is it, playing for all of the marbles in the third game. He played Confidant turn 1 (men, you have to do like him if you want to win!)! The game is quite long, and I played Empty the Warrens for 3 Storm and 6 1/1 Goblin tokens when he is at 9 life. I attack next turn with my tokens and he blocks with Confidant, killing his creature and dropping him to 4 life, and I pass the turn with lethal damage on board. He draws Voltaic Key and plays it with Time Vault already on the table. I Mana Drain it, and his one remaining card in hand is Force of Will, which he hardcasts with exactly one mana left and is able to take infinite turns from here. This was his only out to take the game at this point, and while I was sad to lose that’s Vintage at its finest! Someone has filmed this so I’ll try to get a copy and post it for the loyal EC readers soon.
Matches 5-2-1, Games 11-7

Ok guys, I hope you enjoyed my first report for Eternal Central. Do not hesitate to ask me any question on the EC forums, and I’ll see you there dudes!