Pokemon Australian Nationals 2013! Top 4 Masters reports: Shane Quinn + Myles O’Neill!

Hey everyone, Bodhi back again this time featuring three top 4 interviews with Master’s players at Nationals this year! We have Myles O’Neill and Shane Quinn who placed 3rd and 2nd respectively.  At this stage, I am still trying to hunt down our national champion for an interviews but these players who you will be hearing from shortly are some of the best in the country and have consistently performed incredibly well at big events. I hope you guys enjoy this string of interviews and be sure to look out for more coming to you this weekend!

Shane Quinn: 

Q: Hey guys, i’m lucky enough to be here with Shane Quinn just after he finished second at Pokemon Nationals 2013! Congratulations buddy, tell me about your weekend how did you do?

A: “Hey there, my Swiss rounds were pretty good actually! Essentially what happened was that the first round of the day I was paired against Plasma whilst i’m playing Blastoise and pretty much did the epic misplay to end all misplay’s and it cost me the match as a result. After that, I ended up going X-1 through the last 6 rounds of Swiss and was paired against 2 Klinklang decks of which I was not teched against but I managed to come out with wins in both the games. Played against Gothitelle/Accelgor and won that and another 3 Plasma decks to finish my day at 6-1 and pretty firm in 8th seed.”

Q: How were you feeling going into cut last night at 8th seed? Were you confident at all or were you a little nervous having not played the mirror match on the day at all?

A: “I was not even remotely confident to be honest, essentially the guy that I was going to be paired up against was another Klinklang player and I had just faced him in Swiss knowing full well that he ran 4 Max potions. That combination of Klinklang and Quad Max potions totally ruins any hope of a Blastoise onslaught especially if i’m not teched against it. I thought to myself, yeah i’m probably going to lose this game but even if I won I would be paired against the mirror match and probably 2 more mirrors on my way to the top 4. Those games are essentially coin-flip mirrors in my opinion and I was lucky enough to come away with my 3rd Klinklang win of the tournament.”

Q: What do you think about the Blastoise mirror? Could you elaborate on it more for us all?

A: “I was lucky enough to miss the Blastoise mirror in swiss over the weekend, but when I played in Regionals a couple of months back about 7 Matches in an 10 round event were just the Blastoise mirror match! It’s not so much a boring deck to play against in the mirror, there is a little bit of skill involved, but the match is essentially whoever get’s Blastoise out first and if they can crush your setup before you get Blastoise out then the game is effectively over and you can get up a leave while they are free to play out their turns however they like. Of course, if you both get slow starts or you both miss Blastoise the game can be kind of interesting but 99% of the time that never happens so I wouldn’t consider the mirror match very skill based.”

Q: Do you think there are any techs you can put into your deck to win in the Blastoise Mirror match, or any match up in particular?

A: “I had put Exeggcute in the deck and had been planning to run it ever since I had saw the scan and read the ruling that I could use the card over and over again if I needed to. That meant I could run 3 Superior energy retrieval as well as 4 ultra ball to help out with consistency so I wouldn’t have to discard a heap of resources! You definitely need something to mitigate that situation and I found the Egg’s to be by far the best option. As far as other techs go I decided to run the Plasma Kyurem which to be honest seemed like a terrible idea but I thought that it was worth the space even as a testing card. It was mainly for the KK (klinklang) matchup so I could use frost spear on 2 separate Klinks and then clean them up with a Blastoise/Blizzard burn later in the game. But, it really only worked once or twice all day and against the fellow running 4 max potion it was totally pointless. For the mirror, people always say to run the baby Black Kyurem from Boundaries crossed but more than anything else I consider it a hindrance when it comes to putting energy on a card you may never use and that big Black Kyurem works much better almost all the time.”

Q: Tell me about your top cut experience? You went all the way through top 32 right up until the finals where you were beaten by Ray-Eels. What were your games like?

A: “Well, the Klinklang match it Top 32 was actually really interesting if i’m honest. I got an incredibly quick set up game 1 and just managed to steam-roll through taking 4 of my 6 prizes in the first 4 turns with Black Ballista because he couldn’t set up in time. The next match was the Mirror Match where I couldn’t set up in the 2nd game but was able to magically top deck and was lucky enough to get everything I could possibly need and managed to win through the mirror match quite easily. It was a sad game though because he got the 4% start on loan exeggcute and wasn’t able to do much about it for the rest of the game as I intended to just catcher around it for prizes when I could. In top 8 it was another mirror match, this time though it was much closer and he managed to N me to 1 card in the 3rd game and with close to 30% of my deck able to get me my superior energy retrieval for the game or atleast juniper to try and find one I top decked a water energy, a Keldeo ex and finally the Superior energy Retrieval for game. In top 4 I played against Plasma and was playing Myles for the 2nd time in the event, but this time I was much further ahead from the get go and was able to win the game turn 3 in game 1 and over power him in game 2 thanks to an early Blastoise. Top 2 was of course Eels where everything that could go wrong did go wrong and my deck decided it didn’t want to play anymore and I was effectively stomped.”

Q: One more question before we wrap up now, this event sits you close to 500 championship points! Do you have any plans to go to worlds?

A: “I most likely will be attending, this is only my 2nd year playing and I do really want to experience worlds one year so with any luck it’s a 95% chance I will be there. The money is a little bit of an issue, of course I was so close to an invite but I am sure i’ll be able to pull it together.”

Myles O’Neill:

After a 4th place finish at Australian Nationals last year, Myles O’Neill is looking to be one of Australia’s best players with constant high level finishes and constantly known for innovating with his lists. I was lucky to catch up with him after his loss in the Top 4 match to Shane Quinn for an interview about his weekend!

Q: Hey buddy, congratulations on your amazing weekend! First of all, tell us what you were playing this weekend? 

A: “I was playing Thundurus/Deoxys/Kyurem with Absol and it was essentially a standard plasma list.”

Q: Very impressive performance over the weekend, how did your day go? What was your Swiss list?

A: “I started the day 1/1 after losing to a Garbodor deck in round 2 which was certainly a forgetful part of the day. Round 3 I was incredibly close to losing to the winner of the tournament Kerwin who played a very strong Ray-Eels list with Tropical Beach, Keldeo ex, Mr Mime and i’m sure I saw Victini in there as well. I had a pretty average set up during those games and I managed to win on a sleep flip which is sad but I was still happy to get a win under my belt. I then played 3 Plasma mirrors in a row, which my deck was completely equipped to deal with as I ran Absol which turned out to be an incredibly powerful card in the mirror. It was also the matchup I tested the most in my preparation because I considered it to be the most vital matchup and I was lucky enough to come away with the win all 3 times. My final game in Swiss was verses Shane Quinn, I knew at 5-1 I was confident I had made cut so we had a little bit of a relaxed game I ended up losing and managed to make it into top cut at 11th seed ending 5-2!”

Q: Very well done in your swiss matches! From the first day, did you notice any Meta being immediately established? Were there any decks that stood out to you as weird or you had never seen before? 

A: “Yeah it was a very interesting field if i’m honest, I actually made some predictions to our Canberra group that Plasma would be the most played deck which of course it was. I think the Australian Meta tends to shift very much towards what has shown strong results overseas and those kinds of decks are usually all that we intend on bringing to events to give us the biggest chance of winning. Last year, it was Darkrai decks that made the big stand out in the field and this year we had over half of the top 32 playing Plasma! That was definitely the big Meta game call that we made and one thing we certainly didn’t give enough credit to in our testing was Garbodor/Big basics which ended up having a very strong showing and took 3 of the top 32 spots in the end. There was a lot less Eels and Darkrai than I predicted there to be, I wasn’t too concerned about either deck, but they both ended up making it to Top 4 and Eels of course went on to win the event. In terms of Funky decks/decks that stood out I saw one that I really hope to see more people playing in the future and that was Deoxys ex/Boufallant/Plasma badge. I saw it on the table next to me and was instantly impressed by it as it uses the same strategy as Kyurem/Deoxys hitting for large portions of damage vs Ex Pokemon in the format while trading prizes in a favorable way.

Q: I know that we spoke about this before the interview, but I wanted to bring up a few interesting points about your deck. You’ve chosen to run 4 Switch, 2 Float Stone and Computer Search as your Ace Spec of choice. Can you talk to me a little bit about your reasoning behind this lineup of cards?

A: “I had been practicing T/D/K for a solid 3/4 weeks before the event and I was still struggling to choose between Darkrai and this deck I had to make the choice on what I wanted to play. I couldn’t run Blastoise or Gothitelle as I didn’t have the beaches to support how I wanted to play them and with that decision I decided on running T/D/K since it offered me the most consistent victories. When testing the deck however,  I tested a large amount of builds and ultimately I found that no matter what I did I was always looking for that one extra switching card to help me win the game when I needed it. I had been testing many different versions of deck, be it 14 energy, 14 supporters, 12 of either, or dropping counts of other trainers to make room and I only ended up with a singular tech space after I removed the 4th Colress Machine. With Computer Search as my choice, I was really concerned with making consistency my number 1 priority and while I felt that Plasma could be a little bit hit or miss my cards didn’t let me down on the day and my consistency never really faltered. Or course, with 6 switching cards in my deck I was able to outplay people on the basis that they would only ever consider I was running 3 switch/Scramble Switch and when they see 3 in my discard pile they would feel safe enough to use catchers and stall for turns. But, with the switching cards being so helpful I would almost consider it the best card in my deck just based on it’s surprise factor and the ability to use Float Stone freely on Deoxys ex.”

Q: If you had the opportunity to change one of your Switch for a Keldeo ex, would you?

A: “I definitely think that I would not, I have seen both versions of the deck played and I consider both options to be incredibly viable but having tested Keldeo ex I came to the conclusion that it was a waste of space when I needed that 5th slot on the bench for a 2nd Alternating attacker, be it Absol or a 2nd Kyurem. I feel it just messes with the ultimate goal of the deck and that is to continually abuse your Blizzard burn and damage spread and finish the game off with Deoxys if need be! You ideally want to have 3/4 Deoxys on the bench at all times as well as alternating Kyurem’s and potentially the Thundurus ex for energy acceleration which is very important early game.”

Q: And one last question Myles, you’ve top 4’d the biggest event Australia has ever had giving you enough points to go through and qualify for the World Championships. Will you be attending worlds?

A: “I’ve got the points for world’s now and i’m definitely considering it. I’m not 100% sold yet as I was hoping to get 1st place and the tickey money might be a problem but with any luck that maybe might soon turn into a definite yes!”


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