The Voice – Valencia Special Event 17th Place Team Report

Hi everyone! My name is Nuno, also known by my handle Pyreon (@PyreonVGC on Twitter). I am a VGC player from Portugal having just attended the Valencia Special Event held at Dreamhack Valencia, where I finished 17th, just one place away from Top 16, with a record of 6-2.

This is my best career result at the date of this report, so I decided to share my experience at the event and my team.

Before the Tournament

The preparation for this event started way back in February. I had a strong 2017 season and I was well-placed for a Worlds invite, but the format change had a big effect on my performances as I was unable to find a consistent team I could use at my best. I soon realized that the invite was not a realistic target, so I decided to give up on the season and focus on practicing and teambuilding to find my place in the format and start the 2019 season strong.

When the Valencia Special was announced as counting for the new season, I immeadiately booked flights and started preparations. By that time, I had finally found a team I felt happy about, so it was just a matter of practicing and getting used to the team. I didn’t want to put the expectations too high, as my results in 2018 have been very poor, but I was feeling confident and looking forward to travelling to Valencia with the rest of the Portugal Squad and have fun playing and hanging out with everyone.

The Team

Teambuilding Process

As I mentioned, I had a lot of trouble getting started in the format, which cost me a Worlds invite. Since the start of the year I tried playing a lot with Mega Charizard-Y, but despite liking the atchetype, it felt very inconsistent and predictable, which was not a good combination. So, I decided to try to practice with a more solid team and took Yuree’s team from Sydney to try out the Metagross + Tapu Lele core. Turns out the team in my hands was an absolute disaster and I immediately gave it up after just one event. Feeling unmotivited and without any confidence, I took a short break, and once I felt ready for another go I started once again looking at commong archetypes and cores that I could use as a basis to build my own team,

gardevoir-mega Victory Road
I decided to try out Mega Gardevoir (thank you Ruben), as it was gaining popularity after the release of Intimidate Incineroar.

gardevoir-mega Victory Roadincineroar Victory Roadtapu-fini Victory Roadlandorus-therian Victory Roadaegislash-shield Victory Roadamoonguss Victory Road
I started using Yuanhao Li’s variant that just finished second at Oregon Regionals and the team immediately ‘clicked’. So, I decided to give another go, and I started looking to other Gardevoir teams to look for ways to improve the team and make it more adjusted to my playstyle.

gardevoir-mega Victory Roadincineroar Victory Roadtapu-koko Victory Roadlandorus-therian Victory Roadaraquanid Victory Roadamoonguss Victory Road
After several iterations, I settled on these 6, that I used to get my first two top cuts of the year (Top 8 at a MSS and Top 4 at a PC), as well as to go undefeated in the Copa America league tournament. Despite testing some other alternatives in a couple slots and talking to other users of Mega Gardevoir like Stephen Mea (@GramgusVGC), I ended up not changing any Pokémon as I felt my experience with the team was more important than trying to break the metagame and risk disrupting my usual gameplan.

My team was based on several compositions I had previously studied and is the one I felt more comfortable with. The main way to use the team is to abuse Gardevoir’s highly spammable Hyper Voice to open holes on the opponent’s team, allowing Landorus-T, Incineroar and Tapu Koko to finish off weakened opponents.

Double Intimidate is a huge part of this team as the presence of U-turn on both Intimidators and Volt Switch on Tapu Koko allows them to constantly switch in and out and protect Gardevoir’s weaker Defense stat from physical attackers.

The other mode of this team is the slow Trick Room mode. Incineroar and Amoonguss allow Gardevoir to easily set up Trick Room which makes Araquanid a really strong attacker, backed up by Amoonguss’s Spore and Rage Powder, Incineroar’s Intimidate and Fake Out, and Gardevoir’s spread damage.


Asuna (Gardevoir) (F) @ Gardevoirite
Ability: Trace -> Pixiliate
EVs: 252 HP / 164 Def / 20 SpA / 28 SpD / 44 Spe
Modest Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
– Hyper Voice
– Psyshock
– Trick Room
– Protect

Mega Gardevoir is the focal point of the team. Everything on the team aims to either allow it to spread Pixiliate-boosted Hyper Voices at will, or to take advantage of its Trick Room. Therefore, it’s a Pokémon that is taken to almost, if not every game, and very often as a lead.

The moves are very standard. Psyshock was chosen over Psychic so it can hit Nihilego harder as well as Calm Mind Tapu Fini and Assault Vest users like Landorus-T.

The EV spread allows it to survive Mega Metagross’s Iron Head after Intimidate, as well as an Overheat from Timid Mega Charizard-Y 100% of the time. The speed allows it to speed creep other Gardevoirs that run 36 speed EVs and outspeed Adamant Bisharp. The remaining is added to Special Attack.

Defensive calcs

metagross-mega Victory Road-1 252 Atk Tough Claws Mega Metagross Iron Head vs. 252 HP / 164 Def Mega Gardevoir: 146-174 (83.4 – 99.4%) — guaranteed 2HKO

 

charizard-mega-y Victory Road 252 SpA Mega Charizard Y Overheat vs. 252 HP / 28 SpD Mega Gardevoir in Sun: 145-172 (82.8 – 98.2%) — guaranteed 2HKO

 

nihilego Victory Road 252 SpA Nihilego Sludge Bomb vs. 252 HP / 28 SpD Mega Gardevoir through Light Screen: 77-91 (44 – 52%) — 9.8% chance to 2HKO


Instinct (Incineroar) @ Iapapa Berry
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 236 HP / 28 Atk / 60 Def / 148 SpD / 36 Spe
Adamant Nature
– Flare Blitz
– Knock Off
– Fake Out
– U-turn

Incineroar is Gardevoir’s partner in crime. Intimidate, Fake Out and Fire coverage to deal with Steel-types are all attributes that Gardevoir loves to have on her side. Incineroar is the perfect partner.

The first three moves are fairly standard, and I was very hesitant between U-turn and Low Kick, because I don’t have any Fighting coverage on the team and I might need Low Kick to hit stuff like Tyranitar and Heatran. But U-turn is amazing to help reposition myself and recycle those very important Intimidates and Fake Outs, so I decided to stick with it as it was a better move for neutral matchups.

The EV spread allows me to take two Stomping Tantrums from Mega Metagross after Intimidate as well as Gigavolt Havoc from Tapu Koko in terrain. A bit of speed to speed creep other slow Incineroars, and the rest was dumped in Attack.

Defensive calcs

metagross-mega Victory Road-1 252 Atk Tough Claws Mega Metagross Stomping Tantrum vs. 236 HP / 60 Def Incineroar: 82-98 (41 – 49%) — guaranteed 3HKO

 

tapu-koko Victory Road252 SpA Tapu Koko Gigavolt Havoc (175 BP) in Electric Terrain: 169-199 (84.5 – 99.5%) — guaranteed 2HKO

 

nihilego Victory Road252 SpA Nihilego Power Gem vs. 236 HP / 148 SpD Incineroar through Light Screen: 83-99 (41.5 – 49.5%) — guaranteed 4HKO after Figy Berry recovery


Simba (Landorus-Therian) @ Choice Scarf
Ability: Intimidate
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Modest Nature
– Earth Power
– Hidden Power [Ice]
– Stone Edge
– U-turn

Simba was great. Special Landorus fits really well on this team and I stand by my opinon that special Landorus is better than physical in the current metagame. Scarf special Landorus served as a perfect tech to snipe faster threats like Metagross, Manectric, Nihilego, Charizard, Tapu Koko and opposing Landorus. It is a key member of the team for its support with Intimidate, U-turn, and the ability to take down and pressure all the aforementioned threats.

Stone Edge over Sludge Bomb was needed as Sludge Bomb didn’t really hit anything of note apart from Bulu and I needed some way to put more pressure against Mega Charizard-Y. Stone Edge is an OHKO on Timid bulk-less Charizard, even a -Atk nature and even after Intimidate.

EV spread is straight forward. I debated about reducing SpA EVs to add some SpD in order to take opposing Landorus Hidden Power, but that would reduce the damage output and I decided to keep the 252/252 spread.

Offensive calcs

metagross-mega Victory Road252+ SpA Landorus-T Earth Power vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Mega Metagross: 134-162 (85.8 – 103.8%) — 25% chance to OHKO

 

landorus-therian Victory Road252+ SpA Landorus-T Hidden Power Ice vs. 4 HP / 0 SpD Landorus-T: 156-188 (94.5 – 113.9%) — 68.8% chance to OHKO

 

charizard-mega-y Victory Road-1 0- Atk Landorus-T Stone Edge vs. 4 HP / 0 Def Mega Charizard Y: 156-184 (101.2 – 119.4%) — guaranteed OHKO


Lemon (Tapu Koko) @ Electrium Z
Ability: Electric Surge
EVs: 4 HP / 4 Def / 188 SpA / 60 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
– Thunderbolt
– Volt Switch
– Light Screen
– Protect

Enter the Island Guardian of the team. Tapu Koko is a great asset to my team, as like most Gardevoir teams, its members are quite slow. Its speed and power helped put a lot of pressure on opposing water-types that bother the Intimidate duo like Tapu Fini and Milotic. Volt Switch was also very useful to cycle Fake Outs and Intimidates.

The move I want to talk about here is Light Screen. During testing I realized I had a lot of trouble against Charizard and Nihilego cores, that often included Tapu Lele, Cresselia and Tapu Koko. Against teams that rely on physical attackers I have two Intimidators, but I had nothing against these heavy special hitters. So, I added Light Screen to help boosting my defenses against those Pokémon and allow for example, Incineroar to live Continental Crush or Gardevoir to live Sludge Bomb from Nihilego. It’s not a move to be used every game, but it can turn the game in my favour if played at the right time. I ended up not missing Dazzling Gleam as its damage output is not that high without a boosting item, and I don’t really have problems dealing with Kommo-o.

The EV spread is not as standard as it usually is on Tapu Koko. The extra Special Defense allows me to always live Charizard’s Heat Wave, forcing them to go for Overheat to get the KO. And I never missed the additional SpA as the difference in damage output was minimal.

Defensive calcs

charizard-mega-y Victory Road 252 SpA Mega Charizard Y Heat Wave vs. 4 HP / 60 SpD Tapu Koko in Sun: 123-145 (84.2 – 99.3%) — guaranteed 2HKO


Portobello (Amoonguss) @ Aguav Berry
Ability: Regenerator
EVs: 244 HP / 196 Def / 68 SpD
Relaxed Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 2 Spe
– Sludge Bomb
– Spore
– Rage Powder
– Protect

Amoonguss and I have an interesting story. It was a Pokémon I hated back in 2015 and 2016 and I never felt like using it. Even this year, while it was standard on Metagross teams, I never took it to my matches as it felt useless more often than not. But once I tried it with Gardevoir, I finally saw the immense potential it has, Amoonguss provided redirection to protect Gardevoir and Araquanid, was able to put pressure through Spores, and is a great Trick Room abuser. Its typing and bulk allows it to switch into a lot of threats, further increasing its utility. I often considered Kartana on this slot, but the utility provided by Amoonguss and the fact I was more familiar with its synergy with the rest of the team was deemed more important.

Spore and Rage Powder are must-haves on Amoonguss. Sludge Bomb was chosen instead of Clear Smog because I like all my Pokémon to do damage and not be dead weight. Sludge Bomb does some good damage to all Tapus and solid damage in general and I never regretted this choice even once. I considered swapping Protect with Energy Ball because I was seeing an increase on Gastrodon usage, but quickly dismissed it as Protect is very important.

The EV spread allows Amoonguss to tank a Hurricane from Modest Pelipper as well as a Zen Headbutt from Mega Metagross, which are two really useful benchmarks. I opted for a more physically bulky Amoonguss as the moves it wants to redirect on this team are mostly physical. The 2 IVs on Speed allow me to always outspeed min Speed Snorlax and Spore it before it sets up, instead of risking the Speed tie.

Defensive calcs

metagross-mega Victory Road 252 Atk Tough Claws Mega Metagross Zen Headbutt vs. 244 HP / 196+ Def Amoonguss: 186-218 (84.5 – 99%) — guaranteed 2HKO

pelipper Victory Road 252+ SpA Pelipper Hurricane vs. 244 HP / 68 SpD Amoonguss: 186-218 (84.5 – 99%) — guaranteed 2HKO


Bubbles (Araquanid) @ Waterium Z
Ability: Water Bubble
EVs: 252 HP / 244 Atk / 12 SpD
Brave Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
– Liquidation
– Bug Bite
– Wide Guard
– Protect

Araquanid is my Trick Room sweeper and what a sweeper it is. But that’s not the only job for the big spider as its typing and ability allows it to switch into Tapu Fini, Charizard, Incineroar and Landorus easily. The item choice was undecided until the day before. I usually ran Figy Berry, but sometimes missed having a strong Z-move on my Trick Room mode (since Koko is often left behind) and decided to risk it. I’m glad I did because it did pay off in at least two of my sets and turned Araquanid into one of the MVPs of my run in the tournament.

Moveset is simple, standard Liquidation and Bug Bite for damage and removing berries, while Wide Guard is a very useful tool yo have on this team as Heat Waves, Rock Slides and Muddy Waters are dangerous to a lot of the other team members.

The EV spread is also straight forward, with the 12 SpD EVs aiming to improve the roll versus Tapu Koko’s Thunderbolt in terrain.

Defensive calcs

tapu-koko Victory Road 252 SpA Tapu Koko Thunderbolt vs. 252 HP / 12 SpD Araquanid in Electric Terrain: 146-174 (83.4 – 99.4%) — guaranteed 2HKO

Showdown! importable

Asuna (Gardevoir) (F) @ Gardevoirite

Ability: Trace

Shiny: Yes

EVs: 252 HP / 164 Def / 20 SpA / 28 SpD / 44 Spe

Modest Nature

IVs: 0 Atk

– Hyper Voice

– Psyshock

– Trick Room

– Protect

 

Instinct (Incineroar) (M) @ Iapapa Berry

Ability: Intimidate

EVs: 236 HP / 28 Atk / 60 Def / 148 SpD / 36 Spe

Adamant Nature

– Flare Blitz

– Knock Off

– Fake Out

– U-turn

 

Simba (Landorus-Therian) @ Choice Scarf

Ability: Intimidate

EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe

Modest Nature

– Earth Power

– Hidden Power [Ice]

– Stone Edge

– U-turn

 

Lemon (Tapu Koko) @ Electrium Z

Ability: Electric Surge

EVs: 4 HP / 4 Def / 188 SpA / 60 SpD / 252 Spe

Timid Nature

IVs: 0 Atk

– Thunderbolt

– Volt Switch

– Light Screen

– Protect

 

 

Portobello (Amoonguss) (M) @ Aguav Berry

Ability: Regenerator

EVs: 244 HP / 196 Def / 68 SpD

Relaxed Nature

IVs: 0 Atk / 2 Spe

– Sludge Bomb

– Spore

– Rage Powder

– Protect

 

 

Bubbles (Araquanid-Totem) (F) @ Waterium Z

Ability: Water Bubble

Level: 50

EVs: 252 HP / 244 Atk / 12 SpD

Brave Nature

IVs: 0 Spe

– Liquidation

– Bug Bite

– Wide Guard

– Protect

The Tournament

Round 1 vs. Samuel Mowery (US)
kangaskhan-mega Victory Roadtapu-fini Victory Roadlandorus-therian Victory Roadkartana Victory Roadrotom-heat Victory Roadcresselia Victory Road

I got paired against one of the three Americans playing in Valencia. Samuel is a first-year Master who is still playing Day 2 Worlds as a Senior, and he had a team I was not happy to face.

Standard ‘CHALK’ archetype but with Rotom-H instead of Heatran. This was actually a problem, as my answers to Heatran (Landorus and Araquanid) aren’t that effective against Rotom. I knew the matchup and how to approach it, but I also knew I needed Araquanid to deal with Rotom.

I was happy to find out his Kartana wasn’t Assault Vest, as that allowed my Landorus to quickly dispose of it with Earth Power. The turning point of the set was when I realized Araquanid’s Hydro Vortex did almost 75% to Rotom through Protect. So, I knew I could just chip it and nuke it with Araquanid if I played well. Game 1 was close, but I managed to take the win. For Game 2, I immediately went for the TR mode, as I saw he didn’t bring Cresselia on Game 1. Under TR, Araquanid, Amoonguss and Gardevoir had no problem dealing with his team and I took a comfortable win. Off to a great start!

Result: WW | Global: 1-0 (2-0)

Round 2 vs. Bartosz Ekiert (PL)
metagross-mega Victory Roadtapu-fini Victory Roadlandorus-therian Victory Roadzapdos Victory Roadamoonguss Victory Roadincineroar Victory Road

Bartosz had a standard Metagross team, the same 6 as Alessio Yuri Boschetto (@YureeVGC) and Eduardo Cunha (@MeninoJardim) usually run. This matchup is very tricky, as I need Landorus to stay healthy for my end game win con, as it can win Against Metagross, Incineroar, Zapdos and the opposing Landorus.

Both games were really close, with both of us using Amoonguss to put the opposing Landorus to sleep, but my Landorus had the advantage of being a special attacker, which could be a bigger threat to his team than his was to my own. Game 1 was decided in my favor, and Game 2 was turning into his favor when his timer ran out. It was a relief because I was starting to lose control of the game and going to Game 3 the set could go to either one of us. But we take those, and I was 2-0 undefeated after facing two tough teams, so things were looking good. 

Result: WW | Global: 2-0 (4-0)

Round 3 vs. Mattie Morgan (IE)
kangaskhan-mega Victory Roadtapu-fini Victory Roadlandorus-therian Victory Roadkartana Victory Roadheatran Victory Roadcresselia Victory Road

Now I was facing against Mattie Morgan. We had played before in several Trainer Tower Grinders as well as during Zelda’s Colombus Challenge, so we both knew what to except from each other. I alsa knew his team pretty well as it is very similar to the team that won the Tours Special a couple months ago. 

I knew Intimidate was the key to win this game as the team relies a lot on its physical attackers, but that would leave me open to Tapu Fini, so I had to take Fini down as soon as possible. I also had to be careful about Heatran, but with Landorus and Araquanid, I was confident I could take it out.

The games were again very close, but I was able to make a couple good reads and use my double Intimidate to good extent and managed to take the set. 3-0! This was going much better than I expected.

Result: WLW | Global: 3-0 (6-1)

Round 4 vs. Jens Arne Mækinen (NO)
salamence-mega Victory Roadkartana Victory Roadmilotic Victory Roadincineroar Victory Roadnidoking Victory Roadrotom-wash Victory Road

Jens is a top-level player, so I was pretty excited to play his famous Nidoking team.

He made the mistake of leading Incineroar and Milotic on Game 1 to my Gardevoir / Koko lead. Leading incineroar and Milotic against Gardevoir is usually a mistake as it can heavily backfire, as it did. Gardevoir Traced Milotic’s Competitive and got a +2 SpA boost from Incineroar’s Intimidate. The pressure Gardevoir at +2 and koko put on his team was just too much and I took Game 1 fairly easily.

He adjusted pretty well for Games 2 and 3 though and brought his Kartana. He managed to call correctly my turn 1 Protect on Gardevoir and immediately nuked my Tapu Koko with Bloom Doom, leaving me at a disadvantage early on. Game 3 was more balanced, but he bypassed my Intimidates by getting a critical hit on Gardevoir with Kartana’s Bloom Doom. Despite me being able to recover a bit, he sealed the game with Salamence and Kartana and gave me my first loss of the day.

Result: WLL | Global: 3-1 (7-3)

Round 5 vs. Germán Munera (ES)
swampert-mega Victory Roadpelipper Victory Roadludicolo Victory Roadtapu-lele Victory Roadaccelgor Victory Roadaegislash-shield Victory Road

Rain is always a tough archetype to play against because of the sheer damage output the main sweepers have. Rain with Lele and Accelgor is incredibly anoying to face.

I had a game plan against Rain, but he could as well lead Lele and Accelgor to disrupt my plans. I tried to come with a solid plan for both modes and hope for the best. 

He brought the Rain mode all games and I managed to take Game 1 but ended up losing Game 2 after failing a read (which is a death senntence against such a hyper offense team). In Game 3 I misplayed hardly on turn 1 and thought he was going to double on my Amoonguss, so I risked setting TR with Gardevoir. It backfired as he doubled on Gardevoir, and I lost in that turn as I had no way to stop the Rain mode from there. I got pretty upset at how easily I threw the last game, and I was starting to see my good start fade. At this point, my only goal was to not go negative.

Result: WLL | Global: 3-2 (8-5)

Round 6 vs. Carlos San Juan (ES)
metagross-mega Victory Roadlandorus-therian Victory Roadpolitoed Victory Roadludicolo Victory Roadbuzzwole Victory Roadmarowak-alolan Victory Road

Another Spanish opponent, and another Rain team. Politoed is a lot easier to handle than Pelipper because it can’t touch Araquanid, but I had to be careful about Metagross and Buzzwole. The TR mode seemed perfect for this matchup, so I had to bring it. He was quite scared of Araquanid and decided not to bring the Rain mode to avoid powering up her water moves. In the end I managed to set up Araquanid and Incineroar to deal with his other non-Rain Pokémon in both games and got my goal of at least not go with a negative record.

Result: WW | Global: 4-2 (10-5)

Round 7 vs. Pedro Santos (PT)
charizard-mega-y Victory Roadlandorus-therian Victory Roadcresselia Victory Roadnihilego Victory Roadkartana Victory Roadgastrodon Victory Road

Playing Pedro is already difficult because of the way our teams usually interact and the naturally difficult mathcup. But this time we were playing for CP, as the loser would most likely be out of contetion for Top 32, and none of us wanted to play each other in these circumstances.

I messed up on Game 1 and he was able to gain advantage and KO two of my Pokémon, setting his Nihilego to clean the field. But then the game froze. I never had a game freeze before and it just had to happen like this. The judges ruled the game as a tie despite Pedro’s advantage, and we went to Game 2. I adjusted well in G2 and was able to overcome the bad matchup to win. Game 3 was close, and he managed to get some perfect reads on my Protects and destroy me with his Kartana in the late game.

So, we went to sudden death. I led Incineroar and Landorus and he led Charizard and Nihilego. I wasn’t confident at all as his team could get a KO anytime and I had no switch ins for that duo. But I ended up KOing his Gastrodon switch in while he went for Heat Wave, failing the KO on Landorus. I thought he was going to switch in Cresselia and Overheat the Landorus slot, and that would be a definite win for him.

I still don’t know how I won this sudden death game, but this was easily the toughest moment of the weekend, as despite my win, I ended up knocking out a friend due to external factors, and I totally understand why he felt angry about this outcome. I had no time to let this get to me though, I had a chance to get CP and had to focus.

Result: TWL (W) | Global: 5-2 (12-6)

Round 8 vs. Luca Ceribelli (IT)
manectric-mega Victory Roadtapu-fini Victory Roadlandorus-therian Victory Roadcelesteela Victory Roadgothitelle Victory Roadsnorlax Victory Road

I already knew some details about Luca’s team and knew his Fini was Specs. I had practiced against this archetype, and Specs Fini was one of the most trouublesome variants I faced. So, I wasn’t happy about facing Luca.

I don’t remember much about Game 1, other than I had trouble stopping his Fini. I ended up wasting too many resources on Fini and left the remaining Pokémon to finish me off. I had to do better. On Game 2 I led Gardevoir and Landorus to his lead of Manectric and Fini. I baited the Protect on the Manectric and U-turned Landorus to Amoonguss, tanking Muddy Water and dealing some damage with Gardevoir. Amoonguss and Gardevoir were able to get rid of Fini despite Manectric’s Snarls and I was able to control the game from then, as the main threat was gone.

At this point, I realized I was one game away from my first CP at regional level and my best result ever. I had to do this.

For Game 3 I decided to bring Tapu Koko. If I could bait Manectric’s mega evolution I could easily dispose of Fini and Celesteela with Koko, and that’s what I did. however, I played a little too risky and brought Koko into Fini’s Muddy Water. I was lucky, because the Muddy Water missed Tapu Koko, and that gave me some moment as I could set up Light Screen and control the damage from his team while dealing damage with Gardevoir. I think I could have won even if Muddy Water hit, but that obviously helped. It’s part of the game though, and I sealed off Game 3 comfortably with my Landorus picking up the KOes on his Manectric and Landorus, leaving Celesteela versus Incineroar for an easy endgame.

I did it, I had finally broken the x-3 curse and I was in contention for a Top 16 placement!

Result: LWW | Global: 6-2 (14-7)

Conclusion

In the end, I had mixed feelings. I was very happy with my result, and still couldn’t believe it, given my previous results in this meta. But at the same time, i was still feeling bad about the way Round 7 ended so I went to the merchandising area with my friends to chill a bit before checking standings.

I placed 17th, which meant I was one place away from getting Top 15. I guess most people would be disappointed, but I was so happy with how the event turned out, that Top 16 or Top 32 wasn’t really important. It is still the best result I’ve ever had.

The remaining time was spent having dinner and hanging out with the Portuguese Squad. Sharing this experiece with friends is the best part of playing on these tournaments. I had tons of fun both in and out of the event, and I would like to shout out all the Portuguese crew that helped making this trip an unforgettable one. You’re all the best!

I have to thank everyone who helped me testing, who stopped me from questioning my team despite some losses, who cheered me up and made me keep going and that believed I was still a decent player despite my poor performances. This was one of the best events I’ve ever attended, and I owe it to you all.

The artwork used in the heading was created by bluekomadori.

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