Anish John is from Team Revolution, one of the newest teams in the North American scene and a team that saw quite a bit of success today. Rhymus Lizo is from Team Overdose, another relatively new team that absolutely tore up the event today. At the beginning of round 10, they had four members in contention for the Top 8, and one contending in side events for the side event Cyber-Stein.
Lizo opened with a face down card in each zone and a slow steely look to match them. John made an odd move, setting two spells or traps and then passing. Lizo followed up with a single face down monster, and in his end phase his Scapegoat got hit with Mystical Space Typhoon. John flipped his other card down too, and used a Scapegoat of his own.
Next turn, he used Metamorphosis to turn a goat into Thousand-Eyes Restrict. He ate a face down, which turned out to be Sinister Serpent, and then passed. Play was slow and methodical.
Lizo set another spell or trap on his turn, as well as a monster, and passed. All John did was draw a card, set a spell or trap of his own, and then pass as well. Next turn, Lizo tributed a face down D. D. Warrior Lady for Airknight Parshath, played Book of Moon on Thousand-Eyes Restrict, and attempted to attack, but Sakuretsu Armor took it down.
John flip summoned Thousand-Eyes Restrict and attempted to use its effect, but Ring of Destruction took it out before its effect could resolve, saving the face down monster. It was some sort of priority for Lizo if he didn't tribute it over a D. D. Warrior Lady. Lizo summoned his Serpent next turn, used it to poke a goat, and passed. John had no response, and a turn later the Serpent was tributed for Jinzo. Another goat went down, and John drew yet again. With a single goat remaining, Metamorphosis in hand, and Jinzo on the field, it seemed a prime time to go for a Thousand-Eyes. Instead he activated Enemy Controller on Jinzo, attempted to attack the face down Lizo was protecting, and was prevented by an Enemy Controller from Lizo's side of the table. He summoned Hand of Nephthys and tributed it for Sacred Phoenix of Nephthys to end his turn.
Sinister Serpent bumped back into Lizo's hand, and after a quick shuffle he set another monster—might be Sinister, might not be. John used his next turn to set his own Sinister, then used Metamorphosis to turn it into a Thousand-Eyes Restrict and suck up a face down monster. He didn't take the one Lizo had been protecting and instead got the Serpent again. Lizo once more did nothing but set a monster. It was confusing, but that face down card seemed to have something to do with it.
John tributed his Thousand-Eyes Restrict for Mobius the Frost Monarch, blowing away a Nobleman of Crossout. He then attacked with Mobius and the Phoenix. We finally saw what the face down monster was, as Cannon Soldier was revealed. It was destroyed, as was a face down Blade Knight.
Graceful Charity found its way into Lizo's hand next turn, and he promptly made use of it. With only four cards in hand and none on the field to John's three in hand and three on the field, he was sorely outmatched. He needed something big to level the playing field. He set all his cards, including one monster.
The field would indeed be leveled! John attacked into the face down and smacked into a Morphing Jar, leaving each player with five cards in hand and three on the field. Phoenix swung directly, though, drawing the match's first blood. Delinquent Duo then ate two cards from Lizo's hand: Breaker the Magical Warrior and Magician of Faith. John set a card and passed.
Pot of Greed made up for the Duo, and Lizo took his two cards. “I apologize for the boring duel, ” John said, clearly bored. Call of the Haunted brought up Jinzo for Lizo, and Giant Trunade bounced everything off the field—another nice play from Lizo. He followed it up with a Snatch Steal to take the Phoenix, Premature Burial to bring up Cannon Soldier, and a summon of Sinister Serpent. Then he cleared away Mobius with Lightning Vortex. He attacked for 5500, and seeing as John had only 5400 life points remaining, that was the game. Cannon Soldier didn't even need to fire a single shot.
John opened with a single face down spell or trap. Lizo attacked into it with Breaker, looking to draw out a Scapegoat without wasting his token. His instincts were correct, and John flipped Scapegoat. He set two spell or traps and passed play to John.
Mystical Space Typhoon drew out Scapegoat from Lizo in turn, and John then sacked a goat for Metamorphosis. Thousand-Eyes Restrict grabbed the Breaker, and John then made the fluid play of tributing Thousand-Eyes Restrict for Airknight Parshath to smack a goat. He scored 1900 damage, drew his card, set a spell or trap, and passed play. Mystical Space Typhoon robbed him of his freshly set Ring of Destruction, and Lizo used his next turn to set a monster and Mirror Force.
He quickly lost it to Heavy Storm, and John labored a bit over the decision as to what to attack, finally deciding on another goat. He then tributed for Zaborg the Thunder Monarch to destroy the face down (Cannon Soldier), and passed. Lizo set a card, passed, Zaborg ate a sheep, Lizo set a card, Zaborg ate the last sheep, and then John played Delinquent Duo to decimate Lizo's hand. Lizo set a monster and John played Metamorphosis to summon Dark Balter the Terrible. His instinct was spot on, as Lizo's face down monster was revealed as Sangan.
Lizo again spent his next turn setting another spell or trap, leaving three on the field for him at this point. Dark Balter swung directly next turn and Lizo had only 1200 life points remaining. He summoned King Tiger Wanghu, attempted to attack one of John's goats, and was denied by Sakuretsu Armor. That was the game, as Lizo had nothing left to deny Dark Balter's attack.
Both players opened with face down cards to each row, Lizo opening and then setting a second monster on his second turn. Tension was running high, as one player was getting into Top 8 from this match, while the other was likely not.
John was the first to blink. He threw down the gauntlet with Heavy Storm, costing himself a single card of advantage in the process. He cleared out a Book of Moon, tributed his face down Apprentice Magician (a spectacular opening) for Airknight Parshath, and attacked through a Sinister Serpent. Snatch Steal brought the Airknight over to Lizo's side and it was his turn to swing directly with it. Lizo played Swords of Revealing Light, set another monster, and passed. Lizo has a slow, grinding play style that's pretty impressive when it works.
John took some time pondering his next move. “I gain 1000 . . . of course . . . Breaker,” he summoned it, “ . . . break Snatch Steal.” He couldn't attack, but it was a necessary and intelligent move.
Lizo built his board presence and kept the pressure on John as the Swords-protected turns wore on. A Magician of Faith let him replay the Snatch Steal on Airknight, and John's saving grace was another Scapegoat/Metamorphosis combo. The resulting Thousand-Eyes Restrict sucked up the Airknight Parshath and locked the field - a defensive lock to trump Lizo's defensive lock.
“Swords is gone,” John said as he pointed at the card. His actions were subtle but the message was clear—he'd been watching the card and now that it was off the field, he no doubt felt some relief. He attempted to sack a goat to Enemy Controller Lizo's D. D. Warrior Lady, but Book of Moon put the Lady face down. Airknight was removed, Thousand-Eyes Restrict grabbed the now face down D. D. Warrior Lady, and John contemplated his next move.
“Can I see your grave?”
John gave Lizo's graveyard a quick thumbing through and passed it back, before summoning Sangan and passing. “Is that game?” he asked.
“I'm gonna try.”
Lizo summoned Cannon Soldier, tributed Magician of Faith for its effect, tributed itself, and then removed them both to summon Black Luster Soldier - Envoy of the Beginning. He used it to remove Thousand-Eyes Restrict from play, activated Premature Burial on D. D. Warrior Lady, used Giant Trunade to bump the Premature Burial back to his hand, flipped another Magician of Faith to take back a Book of Moon, and then attacked Sangan with D. D. Warrior Lady to remove it from play. Magician of Faith attacked, Lizo set two cards, and that was the turn. The score was 6000 to 5350 in John's favor, but he had only two cards in hand to Lizo's three and four cards on the field. Ouch.
John set Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer but it was quickly nailed with a Nobleman of Crossout. He set a face down spell or trap and passed. Lizo played Premature Burial on his next turn, but didn't realize he had nothing to target. He paid for it anyway and discarded it, though tournament protocol would not demand for him to do so. He used Book of Moon on Magician of Faith, flipped it up, grabbed Heavy Storm, and used it to blow away John's last line of possible defense—a bluffed Metamorphosis.
Rhymus Lizo wins the match and moves on to Day 2! “This isn't a Savage thing!” he declared. “Overdose is for real!” Those are some strong words of celebration that are sure to ruffle some post-event feathers.
This article was originally written by Metagame.com, what was formerly the official website for large Yu-Gi-Oh! tournament coverage. It has been preserved by GoatFormat.com so that players can learn from this historical tournament coverage.