Friday, 27 November 2015

The UK Battle Master Finals: A Preview!

Tomorrow is the day we have waited for! The Pokemon Battle Master Finals are to be held this Saturday. With players of all breadth of skill level entering the qualifiers - from novice to world champion - we finally have all out attendees for the UK Battle master finals! Here is a short and sweet article I have put together to summarise as many players as possible and the event itself.

Tournament Schedule

11:00am - 11:30am - Player Check-In
11:30am - 11:45am - Player Meeting
11:45am - 15:30pm - Swiss Rounds
15:30pm - 16:00pm - Lunch Break
16:00pm - 18:00pm - Top Cut

Every player will receive at least one Free Drink Token, a Pizza and a Portion of Fries. There will be five Best-of-Three games Swiss Rounds, with a Top Cut of Eight Players. Every player is allowed to bring a +1 to the event. 


Unlike Regionals, the whole of this event will be played in the Best-of-3 format. In summary, tactics that are very unusual or rely on the element of surprise will be far harder to pull off and ill advised in this tournament. During the first game of each match, players will wage a war of information on what items, moves and sets they each carry. Quite often players will make comeback from a game 1 due to having both a well build team and scouting for information effectively.

Worlds Competitors

In this very competitive and stacked tournament there are many big names in this all fighting for the top spots. The following are all players who have previously qualified for worlds:

Jamie Boyt
Having cut 6/6 premier challenges attended this season he is a hot favourite this season. Unfortunately London Regional ended for him with a few unfortunate frozen Pokémon. Hopefully he will be able to let it go this weekend.

Mark McQuillan
Seniors Winner and runner up 2015 and 2014 respectively. Despite bombing at the London Regional he has repeatedly placed well at the Glasgow premier challenges. With his experience with playing best of 3, Mark is definitely a favourite to win this event.

Niall Crallan
Niall Crallan placed top 8 at UK Nationals and has competed at Worlds in 2015. Being another world’s competitor he’s another threat out there.

Daniel Nolan
A guy who's been in at the UK VGC scene since the very start in 2009, His most notable achiement is placing 5th at worlds. Having won the last battle master and coming out of London Regional’s with 56 CP Zog is ready to fight to keep his title!

Ben Kyriakou
Two times UK National champion, 7th place at worlds 2014 and 5th at the London regional held this Saturday gone. Ben is currently on fire and top form with his recent high finish and likely to go deep into the tournament.

Jake Birch
Jake Birch competed at Worlds in 2015 on day 1 and has brought most of the Walsall gang with him, apart from his brother Joe! Following London Regionals he is looking for a strong finish this weekend.

Other Names

Richard Fairbrother has long been a staple in the UK community. He finished 5th at the UK Nationals in 2012 and 18th in 2013. Richard will be a fan favourite for those overseas to win this tournament. His brother Andrew Fairbrother is also a very competent player looking to make a name for himself.

Nigel Gower also known as Wyrms Eye is a well known figure in the UK community who often writes previews for events and analysis of the game’s state. A solid player uses an unusual battle style.

Daniel Oztekin is the writer of this blog! Dan placed second at the first UK regional and reached top 32 in London this weekend. Notorious for using gimmicks he is hoping to improve his consistency this season.

Matthew Carter is another member of team Walsall. He is a strong player who is still looking to get a solid finish. He finished 10th in the Sutton Coldfield regional last year.

Kai Wainwright is a new player to the scene who is showing a lot of potential. He has so far used very unique and fun teams so it will be great to see what he brings to the finals.

David Battell Is a very wacky player who so far has been using cool team building choices. Hopefully the same thing will go well in the B03 setting.

Tyler Bakhtiari finished 9th in the 2014 UK Nationals finishing swiss with an impressive 8-0 record. Also qualified with him is Jason Finch who has been playing VGC since 2011, placing 15th in 2013.

Hosea Fidel won the largest qualifier with 40+ players, with Nathan Mack coming second. The biggest qualifier for this tournament, they must have some high hopes to do well.

Max Waterman started playing VGC around September 2014. He has been a reasonably consistent player throughout 2015. His strongest finish is 1st at a premier challenge this season, although he has just fallen short of success at the larger events.

Luke Dunscombe is an angry Welshman. A good friend of mine, he should do well.

Ben Markham has been a constant in the VGC scene for a very long time now, who was one of the first players I met and also Niall's room mate.

Gerald Thomas de Oliviera is coming back into the game after a short break. He’s a great player who unfortunately has suffered from some extremely bad luck in the past. Great pool player.

Christopher Fotheringham is best known as the son of the Crawley Premier Challenge organiser. He has also taken part in worlds as a competitive TCG player and is looking for success in VGC.

Andrew Thompson and Cameron Steell both qualified in Glasgow. We’ll have to see what they bring to the competition.

Adam Mack and Cheng Zhang both both qualified in Middlesbrough. We’ll have to see what they bring to the competition.

Thomas Plater is one of my good friends and a dedicated saxophone player. He caused some upset for some big names back in German Nats in 2015 and has always had a positive record in swiss so has good potential this year.

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