This was the first time both of these players reached the Top 8 of an MKM Series event. However, what they did list under previous accomplishments couldn't have been any more mismatched. Kine Thorvaldsen mentioned some Game Day and GPT success, but admitted that she didn't have any finishes at the competitive level.
Adriano Moscato, on the other hand, was the reigning Italian national champion, had reached the semifinals at the 2017 World Magic Cup, and he had just made the Top 4 one week earlier at Grand Prix Madrid …
So it was the classic battle David versus Goliath here. The matchup that was on display also was a real classic: Moscato's Mono-Red Aggro against Thorvaldsen's White-Blue Control featuring Approach of the Second Sun. This had revealed itself time and time again not to be a good matchup for the latter deck's pilot, although massively influenced by both players' sideboarding.
The action began with a pair of Earthshaker Khenras, the second one of which was stopped by Essence Scatter. Still Moscato was getting in damage, and he got in some more with Shock before summoning Kari Zev, Skyship Raider.
When Earthshaker and Kari Zev attacked and Moscato reached to make a token, Thorvaldsen stopped him. “In response to the trigger …” she said, indicating that she might intervene. It just wasn't entirely clear what was the correct play here for her: take 2 additional damage or give Moscato an additional land via Settle the Wreckage …
After a moment's deliberation, she decided to take the extra damage, falling to 10. Another Earthshaker Khenra—Moscato's third—made that 8. Chandra, Torch of Defiance was met by Supreme Will, but Lightning Strike was met with a sigh, another round of deliberation, and was eventually given a pass. Another attack brought Thorvaldsen to 3 and she wasn't able to stop Hazoret the Fervent either.
Moscato didn't even declare an attack anymore, for fear of another Settle the Wreckage. Thorvaldsen used Supreme Will to search for an answer, but there was nothing which could get her out of this. Even Ixalan's Binding for Hazoret would have left her dead to the incoming Earthshaker Khenra from the graveyard.
Moscato simply untapped and activated Hazoret to take the lead.
Now We Interrupt Our Look at the Gameplay for … the Sideboarding!
This, the sideboarding was, as has been mentioned, quite important. So here it's in full:
Thorvaldsen brought in …
4 Authority of the Consuls
3 Regal Caracal
2 Torrential Gearhulk
… and she took out:
2 Search for Azcanta / Azcanta, the Sunken Ruin
3 Glimmer of Genius
2 Supreme Will
She later mentioned that, for the most part, her main deck was already set up as well as could be with regards to removal, so finding stuff to take out proved rather hard for her.
The same was also true for Moscato, in a way. In his case, the problem was that Thorvaldsen hadn't approached the Second Sun yet, so he didn't know what he was up against. At least he brought in Abrade.
All in all, he added …
2 Aethersphere Harvester
1 Chandra, Torch of Defiance
2 Dire Fleet Daredevil
1 Pia Nalaar
1 Scavenger Grounds
1 Vance's Blasting Cannons / Spitfire Bastion
… and took out:
1 Sunscorched Desert
2 Lightning Strike
2 Soul-Scar Mage
1 Kari Zev, Skyship Raider
1 Hazoret the Fervent
The second game came to an anticlimactic, quick end. Thorvaldsen took a mulligan and then only had one white source of mana among the first five lands she drew.
Moscato summoned a couple of creatures, and also managed to resolve, of all things, Vance's Blasting Cannons / Spitfire Bastion. Thorvaldsen soon extended her hand in concession and revealed two copies each of Settle the Wreckage and Regal Caracal that she had been unable to cast.
Still, a win's and win, and Moscato's friends carried him off to celebrate his victory!