This past weekend, the region’s third RPTQ took place at Dragon’s Lair in Stockholm. I had the honor of being head judge, employing the talents of Eskil Myrenberg and Linda Johansson to take care of 50 players from around Europe. Through 6 rounds of swiss and a single elimination round, players competed for the four qualification slots for Pro Tour Oath of the Gatewatch in Atlanta, Georgia.
The last few players came in as the player meeting was about to start, having misread the starting times online. Miraculously, they were able to make it in time to attend (and hand in deck lists) without any tardiness. After handing out shiny treasures (seen in the trustworthy hands of Eskil in the judge photo) to all the participants, round one was underway.
Eskil did some stats on the nationalities of the participants based on WER data. The majority of players was, as expected, from the nordics, with Denmark being the most represented. The most surprising thing to come out of that was however the fact that no less than seven Italian players had made the effort to get to Stockholm this weekend. Although two of them made top 8, sadly their run fell just short as they both lost their respective top 8 matches.
As far as judging goes, it was a relatively quiet event. It is however always interesting and engaging to take judge calls in such an environment, as there is a lot at stake and players are understandably competitive and want as fair rulings as possible. This means that there is a lot of need for diplomacy, customer service and policy knowledge (have you noticed that all those are covered by presenters at the upcoming conference? Funny how that works, huh?).
For me personally, I am always happy when delegation works as well as it did at this event. With Linda doing a flawless job planning, choosing and performing deck checks and Eskil always being on point with all the papers, my job was a breeze. I cannot emphasize enough how rewarding it is to plan and communicate in advance. By just having a small facebook chat before the event, everyone involved could point out potential problems and snags as well as plan their part in the event.
Thanks a lot to both Linda and Eskil for making this event superb. A special thank you goes to Dragon’s Lair and Johan Disenborg for being one of the most accommodating and professional TOs there are.
If you’re interested to know more about the event or what we did, feel free to ask at a future conference or event. More detailed information about this one is said to be coming in a tournament report in the near future.
//Patrick Ericsson, L3, Sweden