I had to cover this. Tsz Ching Wong is actually from Hong Kong, but is studying here at McMaster University. He’s playing Macro Cosmos with a heavy emphasis on counter traps and Van’Dalgyon the Dark Dragon Lord; it’s done well for him today, carrying him to the semifinals here in the third Last Chance Regional of the day. His opponent is 25 year-old Tony Bernard, from Milton, Ontario. Bernard is playing an innovative Burn variant based heavily on the abuse of Chain Energy.
The match began with a hearty handshake! Bernard had two Wave-Motion Cannon, Secret Barrel, Waboku, Blast Sphere, and Big Shield Gardna. He set his two traps, set Gardna, and ended.
“Draw,” announced Ching Wong. He summoned D.D. Survivor and attacked into Big Shield Gardna! “What . . . the . . . hell?” To say that he was surprised would be an understatement. Big Shield went to attack mode, Ching Wong set a spell or trap to end his turn, and play was back to Bernard.
He turned Big Shield Gardna to defense mode, activated Stumbling, and then set Blast Sphere. He was really going to milk that Secret Barrel. He ended his turn and play was to Ching Wong, who sent D.D. Survivor to attack the face-down Blast Sphere. The Sphere attached to D.D. Survivor, and Ching Wong summoned Neo-Spacian Grand Mole in main phase 2, turning it to defense mode for Stumbling’s effect.
Bernard set another monster, then activated one of his Wave-Motion Cannons. His back row was now completely filled. Ching Wong drew for his turn, move to his standby phase, and lost D.D. Survivor to Blast Sphere — he took 1800 damage as a result. He had Caius the Shadow Monarch in hand but wasn’t eager to tribute away Neo-Spacian Grand Mole for him. He eventually decided to do so, and used Caius’ effect to remove Wave-Motion Cannon. Caius went to defense mode.
Premature Burial brought back his Grand Mole, and it too turned to defense position. Bernard drew a monster, set it, and activated another Wave-Motion! He was left with no hand.
Ching Wong turned Grand Mole and Caius to attack, then normal summoned Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer (it went to defense position like the rest). Caius attacked Big Shield Gardna, Big Shield turned to attack, and Grand Mole attacked it — Bernard opted not to flip Waboku, and Big Shield was destroyed. A set spell or trap finished Ching Wong’s turn.
Bernard drew Messenger of Peace and passed without playing it. On the turn that followed, Reinforcement of the Army let Ching Wong search out D. D. Warrior Lady, and he turned Kycoo the Ghost Destroyer to attack mode. Caius attacked Bernard’s face-down monster, but he was shocked and dismayed to find it was another Blast Sphere! Grand Mole attacked to bounce itself and Bernard’s face-down monster, and in main phase 2 Ching Wong tributed Caius and Kycoo for Van’Dalgyon the Dark Dragon Lord. Bernard set a monster and Ching Wong was up again.
He turned Van’Dalgyon to attack mode and attacked Bernard’s Sangan — Divine Wrath then negated its effect. He summoned Grand Mole again, turned it to defense mode, and ended. Bernard launched his Wave-Motion Cannon for 3000 damage, and then activated Messenger of Peace — Ching Wong responded with Dark Bribe.
That left Bernard with a hand of Stealth Bird, Ancient Lamp, and Destiny Hero – Defender. He set Ancient Lamp, and Grand Mole attacked it next turn. Van’Dalgyon then hit directly, and Ching Wong summoned Grand Mole again. Next turn, Bernard summoned Destiny Hero – Defender, turned him to defense mode with Stumbling, and ended. Ching Wong drew for his turn, drew for Defender, and Bernard tried to finish him with Secret Barrel! He played Solemn Judgment instead, negating it and dropping to 700 life points. Grand Mole bounced Defender, and Van’Dalgyon made another direct attack. Ching Wong set a second spell or trap.
Bernard activated Messenger of Peace, and then set a monster. Next turn Neo-Spacian Grand Mole bounced it away again, and was re-summoned in defense mode. Bernard set his monster again, Ching Wong bounced it again, and Neo-Spacian was summoned for the umpteenth time.
Bernard kept paying for Messenger, and he set another card to each zone. Ching Wong drew Reinforcement of the Army, searched out D. D. Assailant, and did the “bounce, summon” routine again with Grand Mole. The duel stood at 1400 to 700.
Bernard dropped to 1300 to pay for Messenger of Peace next turn, then tributed Ching Wong’s Grand Mole and Van’Dalgyon for Lava Golem! Ching Wong lost his monsters, but flipped another Solemn to keep himself alive! Bernard ended, Ching Wong drew, and he summoned D. D. Warrior Lady. She went to defense mode thanks to Stumbling, and Ching Wong finished his turn by setting another spell or trap. This one was going to be over any second now.
Bernard set Stealth Bird and activated Chain Energy — unless one of Ching Wong’s two set cards was Mystical Space Typhoon or Heavy Storm, he was out of luck. At 350 life points he couldn’t afford to play any more cards from his hand. “I lose,” noted Ching Wong, who passed his turn.
Next turn, Bernard flip summoned Stealth Bird and Ching Wong chained Divine Wrath to its effect. He discarded Dimensional Fissure to pay for it. He’d kept himself alive, but still had no way to win. Bernard paid 500 life points to set a monster and passed. The duel now stood at 600 to 350. Things were tense.
Ching Wong couldn’t attack with D. D. Warrior Lady — she was being held back by Messenger of Peace. He couldn’t play another card either — everything rested on his one remaining set card. After a brief moment of thought he flipped it and revealed that it was Mystical Space Typhoon!
The Typhoon destroyed Messenger of Peace, and D. D. Warrior Lady attacked! But Bernard’s set monster was Penguin Soldier, complicating the situation even more! D. D. Warrior Lady’s effect was chain link 1, as Ching Wong was the turn player. Penguin Soldier’s effect was then added to the chain. So, Penguin Soldier’s effect sent D. D. Warrior Lady back to Ching Wong’s hand. Penguin Soldier was then destroyed, and Ching Wong was defenseless. All Bernard needed was a monster to finish the game.
He drew. “End turn.” Ching Wong drew. “End turn.” This continued for three more turns until Bernard paid another 500 life points to set a monster. It was 350 to 100, and a turn later Bernard flipped Des Koala for game!
Tony Bernard wins a grueling game 1 with a Chain Energy lock and Penguin Soldier! Eighteen minutes remained in the round, and both competitors sided as quickly as they could.
“I’ll go first,” announced Ching Wong. He quickly placed two cards in his spell and trap zone, then passed play to his opponent. “Monster face down,” stated Bernard, setting a monster, then following it up with a set spell or trap.
Ching Wong special summoned Cyber Dragon next turn, and attacked straight into Big Shield Gardna. He set a third spell or trap, ended, and Bernard shifted Big Shield back to defense mode He set another monster, activated Wave-Motion Cannon, and activated Messenger of Peace.
His opponent passed, and Wave-Motion Cannon got a charge. Bernard had Snipe Hunter, Spirit Reaper, and Blast Sphere in hand, so he set the latter. Ching Wong summoned D. D. Warrior Lady and flipped Torrential Tribute in response to his own summon, but Bernard chained Secret Barrel! Ching Wong took 1800 damage, and Bernard got to search his deck for a monster with the Sangan that Torrential had destroyed. He chose Nimble Momonga.
Ching Wong had no follow-up, and he ended his turn. Bernard set Spirit Reaper, passed, and Ching Wong set Drastic Drop Off. He activated it next turn, forcing Bernard to discard his topdecked Des Koala. He set the Nimble Momonga he’d searched out with Sangan, ended, and Ching Wong summoned Bountiful Artemis. “Your turn.”
Bernard launched Wave-Motion Cannon for 4000 damage. Ching Wong only had 700 life points left! Bernard set a monster, ended, and Ching Wong passed. Bernard took a moment to search his opponent’s graveyard, and then set Marshmallon. One false move would be big trouble for Ching Wong.
But next turn he tribute summoned Horus the Black Flame Dragon LV6! He’d apparently sided it in, an astounding decision that was about to work out very well. Horus attacked into Nimble Momonga, giving Bernard 1000 life points and two face-down Momongas from his deck. At the end of the turn Horus LV6 became Horus the Black Flame Dragon LV8!
Bernard just kept doing his thing. He set a spell or trap, then set Des Koala — yet another monster that would wreck Ching Wong if he made the wrong attack. But Ching Wong couldn’t make any next turn — Horus LV8 isn’t immune to spells like LV6. Ching Wong passed his turn, Bernard flip summoned Des Koala, and Ching Wong responded with Solemn Judgment to negate the Koala’s effect and destroy it! Bernard tried to activate Chain Energy, but forgot that Horus LV8 would just negate it. He ended his turn, Ching Wong passed, Bernard passed, and Ching Wong set Drastic Drop Off. It cost Bernard Magic Cylinder next turn.
Ching Wong summoned Bountiful Artemis, Bernard set a monster, and Ching Wong summoned Kycoo. Only four and a half minutes remained in the match.
Bernard flip summoned Nimble Momonga, attacked Artemis, but lost out to Mirror Force. He set a monster, Ching Wong set a spell or trap, and Bernard paid for Messenger yet again. He flip summoned Stealth Bird, but Ching Wong had Solemn Judgment! Stealth Bird was destroyed, Ching Wong went to 175 life points, and he drew a card for Artemis! Bernard set a spell or trap.
Ching Wong drew, activated Mystical Space Typhoon targeting Messenger of Peace, and Bernard chained Dark Bribe. But Ching Wong chained Solemn Judgment! Ching Wong drew for Artemis, special summoned Van’Dalgyon, and dropped to 86 life points. Van’Dalgyon destroyed Marshmallon!
Bernard summoned Snipe Hunter and discarded to try and destroy Horus LV8, but Ching Wong had another Divine Wrath! He drew with Artemis and summoned another Van’Dalgyon! Horus attacked Spirit Reaper, flipping it, and when Van’Dalgyon attacked into Blast Sphere. Ching Wong responded with Divine Wrath again! But when he made one more attack on Bernard’s last face down, Bernard flipped Mirror Force. Ching Wong lost all his monsters, set three cards to his back row, and ended.
Bernard set two cards to his back row and passed, with Spirit Reaper and Nimble Momonga on the field. Ching Wong summoned Bountiful Artemis, attacked into Nimble Momonga, hit it, and flipped Divine Wrath. Bernard played Dark Bribe, Ching Wong did the same, and then special summoned Van’Dalgyon. It special summoned D. D. Warrior Lady in turn. The Lady took down Spirit Reaper and that cleared the field so Van’Dalgyon could make a direct attack!
But Tony drew into Secret Barrel! He set it, activated it on the following turn and the match was finally over! Both duelists literally collapsed on the table. It was an incredible match, and Tony Bernard was moving on to the finals!