RIW Vintage Trail Tournament report

This was a really fun event and I really like the people at these events. I have been going to RIW for these vintage events for about a year now and I am really enjoying the crowd and the vibe. With that said, I have been getting my butt kicked lately in vintage and I was tired of it. I have not done better than 3-2 all year. I have been alternating between a Nahari control deck and a Paradoxical storm deck. I decided it was time for a change and last month I ran the Saheeli Rai Oath deck. I ran the one posted from another tournament almost as a net deck and again I went 3-2. So, I took this deck to the lab and really looked at the meta game and my play style. I even opened a thread about Dack Fayden to see if I wanted him in the deck. It was worth it since I came in 3rd place for this event. I came incredibly close to the getting to the top 2. I will recap the day, here is my list:

4 Oath of Druids
4 Saheeli Rai
1 Dack Fayden
4 Force of Will
4 Mental Misstep
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Time Walk
1 Brainstorm
1 Ponder
1 Dig Through Time
1 Treasure Cruise
1 Imperial Seal
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Sylvan Library
1 Memory's Journey
1 Pernicious Deed
1 Maelstrom Pulse
3 Preordain
2 Flusterstorm
1 Blood Moon
2 Sun Titan
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Emerald
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Jet
1 Black Lotus
4 Forbidden Orchard
1 Forest
1 Island
1 Tropical Island
2 Underground Sea
2 Volcanic Island
4 Misty Rainforest
2 Scalding Tarn

1 Ancient Grudge
3 Abrupt Decay
3 Nature's Claim
4 Tormod's Crypt
2 Show and Tell
1 Emrakul, the Aeons Torn
1 Iona, Shield of Emeria

I did make some key changes during deck registration such as adding a Forest and a Blood Moon and cutting the second Dack Fayden and the fourth Preordain.

Round 1: Charlie playing Turbo Land
I had to mulligan to 5 to get a decent hand and I was on the play so I was not feeling great about that decision but when playing a combo control deck one has to aggressive. I play a land and say go. He plays a mox and pitches a spirit guide then plays a Mirage Mirror. I have no idea what is happening I just focus on the Oath. I play a Forbidden Orchard and play Oath of Druids with some counter back up. He plays a Dark Depths and I see his game now. I trigger the Oath and hit 2 Saheeli Rai and a Sun Titan and we go to game 2. Game 2 I started with 2 moxes, Volcanic Island, a Blood Moon, and a fetch land. I play the fetch land and grab an Island. Turn 2, I play Blood Moon and I think I have it locked up. I play a Saheeli Rai and then lay out an Oath of Druids and realize that he is not playing any creatures and I have no way to give him a creature. So, I just scry for about 10 turns and set up the combo. I had a second Saheeli Rai and a Sun Titan. I do play an Imperial Seal to get a Black Lotus and he plays a Surgical Extraction to force me to shuffle and I counter it. I play the Lotus and use the Sun Titan to get the Lotus back and cast Saheeli Rai and that was Round 1.

Round 2 (1-0): Kyle playing Eldrazi
Game 1 Kyle is on the play and goes with a Chalice for zero and an Endless One for 2. I play land and Ponder then pass. Next turn I play Oath with Orchard. I trigger the combo on turn 3 and go all the way. Game 2 I add 2 Show and Tells and an Emrakul. We start and he plays 2 Leyline of Sanctity. I set up the Oath combo and trigger it on turn 3, and he informs me that the trigger fails. So, I actually read the cards and he is correct. My Oath does trigger because he cannot be targeted so I cannot complete the trigger since there is no opponent I can target. I play a Sylvan Library and get very aggressive. I grab a Show and Tell and then use Imperial Seal (love this card) to get Emrakul. I cast it and he plays another Leyline and I put Emrakul down. The big guy gets the job done.

Round 3 (2-0): Jon playing 4 Color Control
Game 1 I mulligan once and I a Saheeli Rai on turn 3. He plays force and I force back pitching a Flusterstorm but keeping a Mental Misstep. He plays a Flusterstorm. On his turn, he plays a Preordain and I play Mental Misstep and he plays an Ancestral Recall. He gets a Time Vault/Key lock soon after that. I keep the combo build and grab some removal with Abrupt Decay. He starts with a Library of Alexandria, so I decide to race him. I play Oath to get him to counter it and he does, so I play another one and get the win since he did not get any answers. I sideboard out the combo pieces and put in the Iona and Emrakul with the Abrupt Decay and Show and Tells. This was a slugfest. I misstep a Preordain and play Oath then Ancestral Recall on the stack in response to his force and he plays the Flusterstorm again. We are both down to tutors after this with no cards. He plays his and grabs Dack Fayden off and Vampiric Tutor. I Abrupt Decay Dack and I play an Oath of Druids off an Imperial Seal. I grab Emrakul and end the game since he does not see Jace, which would be his only out at this point except for Vault/Key.

Game 4 (3-0): Jim playing Blue/Red Delver
I offer him the draw since I think we will both make top 8 with a 3-0-2 but he wants to play. He has to mulligan twice. I get the oath out early and the Titan is 3 down from the top. He does not have any answers to the oath so I trigger it again it I fail again. I hard cast a Saheeli Rai and use Black Lotus to play Blood Moon to slow him down and take away his blue sources. I cast Imperial Seal for another Saheeli Rai and finish the game. Game 2 I transformed the deck to a control version and play for fast win. I resolve Oath turn 3 and get Iona, and name blue. He cannot stop her and dies in 3 turns.

Game 5 (4-0): James I do not know what is playing because we take the draw.

Top 8:
Round 1 I have to play Charlie again and he wins game 1 with a quick Mirage Mirror and Dark Depths. I just add the Nature's Claims to the deck from the board and push forward. I get the best hand that I had seen all day and knowing that he is playing a sorcery speed deck I push hard. Play a lotus and sac for blue then ancestral, then play ponder and grab an orchard, then I play the orchard and play oath. I flip the combo and he is dead. Game 3 was brutal. We both start fast and I have an Oath on the table but he has Mirage Mirror and an Expedition Map. I trigger the Oath and fail to see a Saheeli Rai. He goes for a crop rotation in response to Sun Titan's trigger and I play Dig through Time and I grab a Force of Will and a Nature's Claim. I Force his crop rotation and try to Nature's claim his Mirage Mirror. He activates it and targets the Sun Titan. The Nature's Claim fails because Mirage Mirror is no longer an artifact. Something else I learned just then. But is he tapped out and cannot use his Expedition Map so I get a second chance. I go and I see the combo he plays another Crop Rotation after the oath triggers but before the Sun Titan trigger resolves but fails to find his Bojuka Bog.

Round 2 - Top 4
I am playing Jim again and he just have a very long and brutal round. I get a good start with 2 Oath of Druids in hand. He counters the first one so I cast it again the next turn. The Sun Titan fails twice so I have to trigger Oath with no creatures left and I flip the entire library. I flashback Memory's Journey and it resolves so I win game 1. Game 2 he counters my oath again and I have to play Pernious Deed to get rid of his Pyromancer and cage. After that we both play Treasure Cruise and he plays a Dig through Time and I die to 2 Lightning Bolts. My deck is no longer is combo mode, I have transformed it into control but I never see much control in game three. By the time I get the Oath on the board and tirggered he has a small army. I had some choices to make up to the point like whether or not to play a Show and Tell over trying to play Oath because I have to Abrupt Decay his cage. I flip over Emrakul and I play Imperial Seal he has the Force of Will to stop me because I was going to get Time Walk and cast my Preordain. His counter ends my run and he goes to the top 2.

I loved playing this deck and this was a really fun event. The crowd just makes these events so awesome. I'm looking forward to the next one.

last edited by moorebrother1


Awesome report. Congrats on the strong finish.

I added it last minute for disruption. I found during testing that more disruption over controll helps the combo element of the deck. I never regretted it and it won me 2 games.

last edited by moorebrother1
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