Ten rounds in, twelve hours have passed, and it all came down to this: Vancouver’s Jing Bidier versus Southern California’s Kirk Leonhardt. It’s been ages since Leonhardt last made Day 2 at Shonen Jump Anaheim, but now it looked as if he might have a chance at another Top 16. Both he and his son Lance, who we featured earlier, held 7-2 records heading into this round.
Bidier started the match with Reinforcement of the Army, searching his deck for Dark Grepher. He normal summoned it, discarded Destiny Hero – Malicious for its effect and sent Plaguespreader Zombie to his graveyard. He removed Malicious, special summoned his second copy from his deck, and set two cards to his back row: was he holding Crush Card Virus?
Leonhardt drew. He had Smashing Ground, Elemental Hero Wildheart, Brain Control, Shrink, Bottomless Trap Hole, and Neo-Spacian Grand Mole, and he summoned Wildheart. “I’m going to summon Wildheart. Any response to the summon?” Bidier considered briefly, and then shook his head. Wildheart attacked Malicious, forcing Bidier to tributed it for Crush Card Virus, and Leonhardt revealed his hand: nothing for the Virus to destroy!
“So that’s a replay. I’ll send Wildheart to attack Dark Grepher, and in the damage step I’ll activate Shrink.” Dark Grepher went down and Bidier took 650 damage. Leonhardt set a spell or trap to end. Bidier was up. He drew to three cards in hand with one card set, having lost three cards to Leonhardt’s one last turn — his Crush Card Virus certainly hadn’t paid off yet in any way shape or form, and he knew Leonhardt’s Wildheart was protected by Bottomless Trap Hole. He summoned Breaker the Magical Warrior, lost him to Bottomless, and thought a moment before summoning his third Malicious from his deck in attack mode.
He flipped his face-down Emergency Teleport to summon Krebons from his deck, and then Synchro summoned Thought Ruler Archfiend! Thought Ruler ran over Wildheart; Leonhardt took 1200 damage, and Bidier gained 1500 life points thanks to Thought Ruler’s effect. A set spell or trap ended Bidier’s turn.
Leonhardt topped D. D. Assailant, and lost it to Crush Card Virus. He summoned Neo-Spacian Grand Mole, Bidier had no response, and Leonhardt activated Smashing Ground to destroy Thought Ruler. He attacked for 900 damage, Bidier took the damage, and Leonhardt ended his turn with his Brain Control in hand.
Bidier drew for his turn; he had two cards in hand and one card set, with Plaguespreader Zombie still in the graveyard. He was out of copies of Malicious, but he flipped his back row Reinforcement of the Army to search out Destiny Hero - Doom Lord. He summoned it, activated its effect, and removed Neo-Spacian Grand Mole from play with Doom Lord’s effect. “Go ahead.”
Leonhardt topdecked Giant Rat for his last turn under Crush Card Virus, and ran over the Doom Lord. “Your go.” The duel stood at 6800 to 7150, with Bidier narrowly leading. Leonhardt had Giant Rat on the field and Brain Control in hand, while Bidier drew to three. He activated Allure of Darkness, drew two, removed Plaguespreader Zombie, and summoned Elemental Hero Stratos. Stratos’ effect got him Destiny Hero - Diamond Dude, and he discarded him for Destiny Draw! That left him with three cards in hand and Stratos on the field to Leonhardt’s two cards.
Another Allure of Darkness let him trade Dark Armed Dragon for two more draws. He had Seven Dark monsters in his graveyard, and sent Stratos to attack Giant Rat: Leonhardt took 400 damage and searched his deck to summon Kinetic Soldier! Bider ended his turn.
Leonhardt topdecked Bottomless Trap Hole, and sent Kinetic Soldier to run over Stratos for 1550 damage. He set the Bottomless, ended, and took back his Neo-Spacian Grand Mole. He now had four cards total to Bidier’s four. Mystical Space Typhoon destroyed his Bottomless Trap Hole. “That was a very good Mystical,” remarked Leonhardt. Bidier activated Brain Control to take the Mole, summoned Krebons, and Synchro summoned Magical Android. The Android attacked over Kinetic Soldier for a total of 1050 damage and Kinetic went down. Bidier ended his turn and gained 600 life points. He had one card in hand and Android on the field.
Another Bottomless Trap Hole came off the top of Leonhardt’s deck: no real help with Magical Android already on the field. He activated Brain Control, took Magical Android, and attacked for 2400 damage! It was a gutsy move — Leonhardt’s ambition might be his end here.
And it was. When Android attacked, Bidier summoned Gorz, and a 2400 ATK Token with it! Leonhardt set a spell or trap and ended. Next turn Bidier’s Token turned to attack mode while Gorz sat in defense, and Magical Android swung to finish the duel!
Both competitors dug deep into their side decks, and Game 2 began just over a minute and a half later. About eighteen minutes remained.
“I’d like to go first,” announced Leonhardt. “Have a good game.” He had Torrential Tribute, Marshmallon, Royal Oppression, Bottomless Trap Hole, Neo-Spacian Grand Mole, and D. D. Assailant in hand. He set Marshmallon, Oppression, and Bottomless. “Going to you.”
Bidier activated Mind Control, taking Marshmallon and looking at it. He flip summoned it, normal summoned Plaguespreader Zombie, and Leonhardt took a long look at his Bottomless Trap Hole, bluffing. When Bidier tried to Synchro summon for Magical Android Leonhardt flipped Royal Oppression to negate the summon! Bidier set a single spell or trap card.
Leonhardt drew Banisher of the Radiance, attacked, and struck for 1600 damage. “I’ll say go.” Bidier didn’t look confident with that Oppression on the field, and anything big he could summon to run over Banisher of the Radiance would fall to Bottomless Trap Hole. He sent a card from his hand to the top of his deck to special summon Plaguespreader Zombie, but lost out to Oppression. He followed it up with Allure of Darkness, drawing the card he’d placed on top of his deck and one more — he removed Dark Armed Dragon. He summoned Dark Grepher, passed priority, and Leonhardt flipped Bottomless! The plan had worked perfectly and Bidier had to end.
Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror was Leonhardt’s next draw, and he summoned D. D. Assailant. He tried to attack, but Bidier responded with Threatening Roar. Leonhardt set another spell or trap card. “Setting a card to finish, and saying go.” Bidier set two cards and ended.
Leonhardt got another D. D. Assailant in his draw phase next turn: Banisher of the Radiance attacked for 1600 damage, D. D. Assailant attacked for 1700 damage, and Leonhardt ended. He had two monsters, Royal Oppression, a set spell or trap card, and three cards in hand. Bidier drew to two in hand, and had just two cards set in his back row.
He normal summoned Krebons and Leonhardt feigned a response; he had Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror set, and didn’t flip it after a longer bluffed deliberation. Bidier ended, Leonhardt drew Book of Moon, and he summoned D. D. Assailant. He activated Shadow-Imprisoning Mirror and Bidier chained Mystical Space Typhoon; it may have been better for Leonhardt to have waited to chain the Mirror, drawing out 800 life points. He played on though, activating Book of Moon to turn Krebons face down. Banisher attacked it and removed it, D. D. Assailant made a direct attack, and the second Assailant connected for game!
Each duelist was now just one win away from a shot at Day 2! Less than ten minutes remained in the round — this match could easily come down to time, and both competitors sided carefully. Bidier would have the advantage of going first. Both competitors shook hands before beginning.
Bidier drew to six and discarded Destiny Hero – Malicious for Destiny Draw! He normal summoned Elemental Hero Stratos, searched out Destiny Hero – Diamond Dude from his deck, then removed him for Allure of Darkness. He set two cards to his back row and ended. Leonhardt drew.
He had Emergency Provisions, Mystical Space Typhoon, Brain Control, Royal Oppression, Bottomless Trap Hole, and Scapegoat! He was clearly going to wait this one out if possible. He activated Brain Control, took Stratos, and dropped by 800 life points. Stratos attacked for 1800 damage, and then set everything to his back row before passing back!
Bidier summoned Snipe Hunter. He called priority for its effect, discarded Plaguespreader Zombie, and Leonhardt chained Bottomless Trap Hole. He then chained the targeted Scapegoat, followed it up with Mystical Space Typhoon, targeting Bidier’s face-down Mirror Force, and finally chained Emergency Provisions! He sent his Typhoon, Scapegoat, and Bottomless Trap Hole to the graveyard! He gained 3000 life points, destroyed his opponent’s Mirror Force, summoned four Sheep Tokens, and Bottomless Trap Hole ripped Snipe off the field. Time was called! Three turns after this one would remain. The duel stood at 10,200 life points to Bidier’s 6200. Could he deal 4000 damage over two turns, facing four Tokens and Royal Oppression?
He sent a card from his hand back to the top of his deck to try and summon Plaguespreader Zombie, but Leonhardt chained Royal Oppression, dropping to 9400 life points to shut it down! Reinforcement of the Army got Bidier Destiny Hero - Doom Lord, and he activated Allure of Darkness. He removed the Doom Lord for Allure’s effect and had two cards left in hand, one card set in his back row, and Stratos on the field. He activated Mystical Space Typhoon to destroy Royal Oppression. Leonhardt gave a bit of a wince.
Bidier removed Malicious to summon another in attack, special summoned Krebons from his deck with Emergency Teleport, and had just one card left in hand. He Synchro summoned Red Dragon Archfiend! “Wow, nice play,” remarked Leonhardt. He lost all his Tokens to Red Dragon Archfiend, took a direct shot from Stratos, and dropped to 7600 life points. Bidier set his last card to his back row and ended.
Leonhardt topdecked Fossil Dyna Pachycephalo — there were no outs left now unless Bidier made the wrong attack first, and Leonhardt set it, fully aware of that fact. Bidier drew for his last turn, removed one Malicious for another, and special summoned his last copy. Red Dragon Archfiend attacked Fossil Dyna, destroying it, but the Malicious and Red Dragon Archfiend fell to its effect! Stratos still made a direct swing for 1800 damage. It was now 5800 to 6200 life points. Bidier set his last card to his back row.
Leonhardt topped Torrential Tribute, slowly peeked at it, and gave Bidier the handshake. It was over! “I thought I had that,” smiled Leonhardt. “That was brilliant bringing that out! What a good game!” He shook Bidier’s hand one more time and Bidier moved on with an 8-2 record.
Jing Bidier may just be on his way to Day 2!