Birthing Pod at GP Madrid 2014 (Top 8) Part 2/2 by Andrew Devine

Birthing Pod at GP Madrid 2014 (Top 8) Part 2/2 by Andrew Devine

This is part 2 of my tournament report from GP Madrid, where I ended up in the Top 8.

You can find part 1 here – Birthing Pod at GP Madrid 2014 (8-1) by Andrew Devine

This is the deck I played. Please let me know what you think.


Main deck
4 Windswept Heath
4 Verdant Catacombs
3 Forest
3 Razorverge Thicket
3 Gavony Township
2 Overgrown Tomb
1 Temple Garden
1 Godless Shrine
1 Plains
1 Swamp
4 Birds of Paradise
3 Kitchen Finks
3 Voice of Resurgence
3 Noble Hierarch
1 Thragtusk
1 Reveillark
1 Siege Rhino
1 Restoration Angel
1 Linvala, Keeper of Silence
1 Murderous Redcap
1 Eternal Witness
1 Orzhov Pontiff
1 Sin Collector
1 Melira, Sylvok Outcast
1 Qasali Pridemage
1 Spellskite
1 Scavenging Ooze
1 Viscera Seer
1 Eidolon of Rhetoric
3 Abrupt Decay
2 Chord of Calling
4 Birthing Pod


1 Abrupt Decay
1 Orzhov Pontiff
1 Scavenging Ooze
2 Lingering Souls
1 Darkblast
4 Thoughtseize
1 Shriekmaw
1 Thrun, the Last Troll
1 Reclamation Sage
1 Aven Mindcensor
1 Memoricide

Round 10 – [card]Ad Nauseam[/card] Combo, Peter Vieren

Ad nauseam

I lost the dice roll.

Game 1. On the play Peter suspended a [card]Lotus Bloom[/card] and played a Temple, scrying a card to the bottom. I started my turn with [card]Razorverge Thicket[/card] into [card]Birds of Paradise[/card].

On his second turn he played [card]Seachrome Coast[/card] and [card]Pentad Prism[/card] with 2 charge counters on it. On my turn I cracked a fetch for a shockland and played [card]Kitchen Finks[/card].

Peter used his turn to play [card]Phyrexian Unlife[/card] and passed to me. I had four mana available, so I played [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card], then killed his Unlife with my [card]Abrupt Decay[/card].

On his next turn his [card]Lotus Bloom[/card] came off suspend, but he didn’t go for it. I played a land and passed without a play. At end of my turn Peter played double [card]Peer Through Depths[/card]. He found [card]Ad Nauseam[/card] and [card]Angel’s Grace[/card].

On his turn he went for it. He picked up his deck, went to negative life, exiled [card]Simian Spirit Guide[/card]s and cast [card]Lightning Storm[/card]. He discarded 7 lands to deal me exactsies. In response I played [card]Restoration Angel[/card] to blink my [card]Kitchen Finks[/card] and gain 2 life. Somehow after drawing his whole library, the lucky sod had drawn 8 lands, so he used the 8th one to finish me off.

The matchup was quite rough to be honest, but I felt that the addition of [card]Eidolon of Rhetoric[/card] was a silver bullet that would just win me the game, if I drew it.

Game 2. I kept an opener with [card]Thoughtseize[/card] and [card]Sin Collector[/card], as he mulliganed to 6. One of them was [card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card], making the game much more difficult, but I used [card]Birthing Pod[/card] to tutor up [card]Reclamation Sage[/card], then stripped his hand with my discard spells. I was holding [card]Eidolon of Rhetoric[/card] in hand, but I managed to leverage the game without showing it. I [card]Birthing Pod[/card]ded [card]Sin Sollector[/card] into [card]Siege Rhino[/card] to put him at 6 life. He chose to use [card]Ad Nauseam[/card] to luck-find enough pieces to win, but killed himself instead.

Game 3 was similar to game 2 (and my first game 3 of the tournament), as he had a [card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card] and suspended double [card]Lotus Bloom[/card]. My hand had double [card]Thoughtseize[/card], [card]Reclamation Sage[/card] and [card]Qasali Pridemage[/card]. I killed his [card]Leyline of Sanctity[/card] with [card]Reclamation Sage[/card] on turn 2, then used [card]Thoughtseize[/card] to strip his combo pieces turn 3, followed by deploying [card]Qasali Pridemage[/card].

His [card]Lotus Bloom[/card]s came off suspend, but he didn’t have the other combo pieces to go with it, so he passed the turn. I untapped, played [card]Birthing Pod[/card] tutoring up [card]Siege Rhino[/card] to pressure his life, made an attack and passed back.

He still didn’t have both pieces, but he [card]Peer Through Time[/card]d and found [card]Ad Nauseam[/card]. On my turn I attacked with [card]Siege Rhino[/card], putting him to 3. I noticed he only had 1 Black producing land, so decided to [card]Abrupt Decay[/card] one of [card]Lotus Bloom[/card]s. He floated Black off of it, so I [card]Qasali Pridemage[/card]d the other Bloom. He decided to use [card]Ad Nauseam[/card] to dig his way out, but the life loss killed him instead.


Round 11 – U/R Control, Sergio

Anger of the Gods banner

I won the dice roll.

Game 1. This guy was playing [card]Anger of the Gods[/card] maindeck that killed my [card]Birds of Paradise[/card] and [card]Kitchen Finks[/card], slowing me down a lot. I tapped out for [card]Birthing Pod[/card], which he returned to my hand with [card]Cryptic Command[/card] as he countered my next play.

Next turn he countered and drew with another [card]Cryptic Command[/card]. He repeated it for another time, now by Command off of [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card]. I was trying to get back in the game, but [card]Dig Through Time[/card] gave him great cards, like [card]Batterskull[/card]. All I get were mediocre draws.

Game 2. I had a grip full of resilient creatures, [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card] made his counter magic worse, [card]Eternal Witness[/card] returned a fetch land, so I kept making land drops. Turn 4 [card]Siege Rhino[/card], turn 5 [card]Thragtusk[/card], they went all the way.

Game 3. I led with [card]Thoughtseize[/card] and had to take from him the [card]Blood Moon[/card], as I had two lands in hand: [card]Forest[/card] and [card]Overgrown Tomb[/card]. [card]Blood Moon[/card] was normally pretty bad against me. I had many mana creatures and plenty of fetches. I struggled to make next plays on my 2 lands. By the time I finally saw the 3rd one, he had 6 of  those, enabling him to [card]Remand[/card] my spell, play [card]Lightning Bolt[/card]ed, then [card]Snapcaster Mage[/card] to flashback the [card]Lightning Bolt[/card] to put the pressure on and put game out of my reach.

After the game he told me [card]Birthing Pod[/card] was his nightmare matchup and he was lucky to come out with a win. I thought so too, but didn’t want to dwell on my bad beats. Any loss of concentration here could cost me Top 8.


Round 12 – Junk [card]Birthing Pod[/card], Remi

Orzhov Pontiff banner

I lost the dice roll.

Remi was a recognizable French pro and to my joy it was the mirror match. I had an excellent record vs pro players and a great record in Junk [card]Birthing Pod[/card] mirrors, so it felt like it would be a good test for myself.

On turn 1, he fetched a shock land and played [card]Thoughtseize[/card], but was dismayed to see 2 [card]Birthing Pod[/card]s of mine. He took one of them, but I used the other to create a few next turns of value. Finally he played his own [card]Birthing Pod[/card] and used it to tutor [card]Qasali Pridemage[/card] to kill mine. At this point, I had an advantage in board position, a larger [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card] and mana up for [card]Gavony Township[/card] activation, making my attack deal exactsies.

Game 2, I made an early [card]Orzhov Pontiff[/card] to kill a mana dork and slow down his draw. Neither of us drew [card]Birthing Pod[/card], but I was able to get more creatures down and leverage [card]Gavony Township[/card] to the point where his [card]Siege Rhino[/card] didn’t make much difference. I was able to chip away his life with fliers, until I had a lethal alpha strike.


Round 13 – U/W/R Delver, Bernado

Delver of Secrets banner

Bernado had splashed White in order to play [card]Geist of Saint Traft[/card] in Delver mirrors. Sadly for him, it didn’t fare well versus my resilient blockers.

He had a creature light draw game 1, as I was able to use [card]Spellskite[/card] to protect my creatures from removal. He managed to build up a board with [card]Young Pyromancer[/card] and spells, but my [card]Orzhov Pontiff[/card] made him too short of blockers and sealed the game.

Game 2. I got to live the dream with [card]Darkblast[/card] on turn 1 to kill his [card]Delver of Secrets[/card]. On turn 2, he played [card]Young Pyromancer[/card] and passed. I drew [card]Darkblast[/card] dredging a [card]Lingering Souls[/card] into the graveyard for value. Killed the [card]Young Pyromancer[/card], played a [card]Noble Hierarch[/card] and passed. At this point he was out of creatures and kept pointing burn spells at my face. I played [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card] and grew it gaining life in process. He didn’t draw neither enough burn to finish me, nor an answer to the Ooze, so I took the match. Beat Delver 2-0, for the 3rd time.


Round 14 – Junk [card]Birthing Pod[/card], Pierre Dagen

Siege Rhino banner

I was excited to be on camera at a GP for the first time and to play against a French pro. Unfortunately for me, I didn’t know what deck Dagen was playing, despite him being in the feature match area several times already.

Game 1. I made a mana dork, then he made tapped [card]Overgrown Tomb[/card]. I hoped he was on Jund, so I could snag removal with [card]Sin Collector[/card] before he had chance to cast it. Unfortunately he was on [card]Birthing Pod[/card] and the [card]Sin Collector[/card] whiffed. However, the information was important as I saw his hand was awkward with mana and cluttered with 3 drops. I then decided that I could play more creature and take over with [card]Gavony Township[/card] as he could only play 1 creature a turn and I deployed multiple.

I played my [card]Birthing Pod[/card] to turn [card]Sin Collector[/card] into [card]Murderous Redcap[/card] to kill his [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card]. I think the coverage guys might have been right about just getting [card]Linvala, Keeper of Silence[/card] to turn off his [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card]. Regardless of whether I made the right play, he made a big error in trying to kill [card]Birthing Pod[/card] in my draw step as [card]Chord of Calling[/card] for [card]Spellskite[/card] basically sealed the game. It was just a matter of how many turns it would take to clear up.

I’m not 100% sure how the rest of the match played out, and the coverage archive for these games is broken. The point is I won.


Round 15 – Junk, Javier


Game 1. I kept a risky one-land hand: [card]Verdant Catacombs[/card], 2x [card]Voice of Resurgence[/card], [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card], [card]Kitchen Finks[/card], [card]Noble Hierarch[/card] and [card]Spellskite[/card]. My opponent mulliganed to 5, and I was lucky to draw a land. He kept drawing cards that were just enough to keep him in the game, but never enough to get ahead. The game got protracted because of this. It was a slow, long win.

Game 2. I mulliganed to 6 and he mulliganed to 5, again. I got an early [card]Birthing Pod[/card] and a couple of activations, before he drew [card]Maelstrom Pulse[/card] to get tid of it. However, the value it gave me kept me ahead on cards for rest of game. I sealed a victory by a flier he didn’t have removal for.


Round 16 (Quarterfinals) – Tarmo-[card]Birthing Pod[/card], Jose

tarmogoyf banner

This was the quarterfinals of Top 8, so you can see parts of my games on camera. In each of them I died a slow death to [card]Scavenging Ooze[/card]. I couldn’t draw removal for it. What’s more, I couldn’t kill his [card]Birthing Pod[/card], while he killed mine.

13-2 was my final result, putting me in 6th place.

Sad to lose in quarterfinals, but happy to play my favourite format at my first opportunity to win a Pro Tour.

Community Question: What Fate Reforged card(s) do you want to use in your Pod deck?

What Fate Reforged cards do you want to use in your Pod deck

Thank you for reading,

Andrew Devine

Please let us know what you think below...

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