Vantage Point — Four Stories From Belgium Nationals


There it is!

Nationals are here and everyone is hyped, and everyone should be. Who does not want to be their countries finest Pokemon trainer? Worlds invites are hanging from the trees waiting to be Headbutted out. The stakes are high, so this comes with a huge mix of emotions which makes for an atmosphere that you can only find at this kind of events. Nervousness, anxiousness, arrogance, confidence, carelessness and pure excitement, they are all there. All people have their own story, background and views but when you bring those people together to share the same passion, that is what creates the unique Pokemon atmosphere. But it is still a competition and we are all trying to be better then our opponents. To do so you need skills, concentration and picking the right deck for the current meta. In this article we will see four different people who share their experience at the Belgium National Championship 2016 (for those unaware of where Belgium is situated, just check the map), and most important how they picked their decks. I selected four ways of picking a deck, and found a person for each style. There are lots of National Championships to come so I hope this can help you make the right call to Git Gud. It’s not all about the decklists, it’s about your way of thinking. Here comes the mandatory overused quote to make me look like a real writer: “Give a man a fish and you feed him for one day, teach a man how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime”. Let’s get fishing!

Meet The Trainers

I reached out to three of our finest Belgian Pokemon trainers, and they were all willing to share their precious knowledge and story. We got Youry De Bruyn, Jimmy Wuyts and our National Champion Sen Cauberg. But first, let’s check out my story. Note: The tournament was played in the Standard format XY-GEN.

Riding The Hype Train: Dominick Schroyens 10th Place

Pokemon (18)

3 x Greninja BREAK (BKP #41)3x Greninja (BKP #40)1x Greninja (XY #41)4x Frogadier (BKP #39)4x Froakie (BKP #38)2x Jirachi (PRXY #XY67)1x Dedenne (FFI #34)

Trainers (34)

4x Professor Sycamore (PHF #101)2x Ace Trainer (AOR #69)1x Shauna (GEN #72)1x Lysandre (FLF #104)1x Fisherman (BKT #136)1x Delinquent (BKP #98)1x Wally (RSK #107)1x Skyla (BKT #148)4x VS Seeker (PHF #109)3x Trainers' Mail (RSK #92)4x Dive Ball (PRC #125)2x Level Ball (AOR #76)1x Ultra Ball (RSK #93)1x Professor's Letter (XY #123)1x Startling Megaphone (FLF #97)1x Super Rod (BKT #149)1x Sacred Ash (FLF #96)2x Muscle Band (XY #121)2x Rough Seas (PRC #137)

Energy (8)

8x Water Energy (RS #106)

Greninja BREAK is probably the most hyped deck at the moment, and for good reason. The Giant Water Shuriken Ability is insanely powerful, and thanks to the free retreat, Greninja BKP brings to the board you can spread damage all day. When the deck has its set-up it’s very hard to beat. Greninja Break has been hyped since the start, and has proved to be a solid contender. But is it worth boarding the hype train?


My name is Dominick Schroyens I am 25 years old, I enjoy playing and watching sports and when there is time left besides work, I occasionally play some games or watch eSports. I spend the majority of my free time playing, watching or thinking about Pokemon. I started playing the TCG back when Primal Clash was released and have been hooked ever since. I like the nostalgic feeling and the strategic aspect of the game. The possibilities seem endless and the game keeps evolving and changing which makes it a really interesting one to play. I haven’t played a whole lot of tournaments this year so my best results were the Belgium Nationals and a Top 8 finish at a City Championship. This is my second article on PokeBeach, the first one was about my Gengar-EX deck that I played for most of the year.

The Deck

I played Greninja Break, but the decision to do so was made only three days before Nationals. When I build decks I usually am looking for new things that nobody else plays, I always liked the underdog role, the decks that nobody talks about. When everyone was hyping M Mewtwo-EX Y then I was playing M Mewtwo-EX X, I played a lot of Gengar-EX while nobody gave the deck any credit. I was testing out Flareon-EX before it was cool. Wow, am I starting to sound like a Pokemon hipster now? I think you get the point. It was fun to play something different and I never felt like it reduced my chances to get good results. Being relatively new to the scene you always try to show your skills and your game insight but maybe part of me just looked for an excuse to explain my losses. “No wonder you won, it’s just a Gengar deck.”. My intention was to make a real good run at Nationals. So I started listing the decks that had potential and that wouldn’t be too hard (read expensive) for me to build. The final list included: Greninja Break, Yveltal-EX / Zoroark / Gallade , Trevenant BREAK and Flareon-EX. At first I build the YZG deck, because I owned all the cards to do so. I was really pleased with my testing results and saw that I had a good shot at getting far with the deck. But since I was expecting a ton of people to play Greninja Break I really started doubting if YZG was the best pick. With the huge presence of Greninja decks I decided to narrow my list down by dropping Flareon-EX and because I lacked too many cards to play Trevenant Break I was left with two choices. From the moment I build the frog list I knew it was a really good deck and little did I know that it was so much fun to play.

Now that I picked the deck I tried to adjust my build to get an advantage at the mirror match and since I expected a good amount of players to bring M Rayquaza-EX the list had to be prepared for this as well. There isn’t much room to tweak the deck but I valued Dedenne FFI and promo Jirachi highly. Octillery was clearly a waste of space and I’ve never been a big fan of the card anyway. The Supporter line-up is straight forward using only one Wally and one copy of Delinquent to get a small edge when playing the mirror. For the same reason I decided to play two Muscle Band with the added bonus that the card gives you easier knockouts and more flexibility to use Shadow Stitching. One Sacred Ash and one Super Rod because generally Energy cards don’t like to be in my Hand when I need them to be there.

Tournament Overview

R1 Ruben Daems – Greninja Break – LW (0-0-1)

I faced one of the biggest problems a Greninja player can face, a really bad starting Hand and no good draws the following Turn. I had to scoop the first game because I was so far behind, there was no way to get back into the game. Game two was better, I got my set-up really quickly and was able to pressure my opponent enough for him to never recover. We tied.

R2 Mathias Descan – Greninja Break – WW (1-0-1)

I wasn’t looking forward to play a second mirror match in a row, my opening Hand made my mood swing even more. A BKP Greninja, a Frogadier, a Sacred Ash, a Super Rod, no outs to a Froakie and all those cards were joined by our dear friend Professor Sycamore . I managed to set up just fine and my opponent couldn’t get his deck running. Game two was even quicker, I had a Greninja Break ready to throw Giant Water Shuriken by Turn two thanks to Wally. First win of the day and I was glad that I could finish the game this quickly.

R3 Jolien Winkler – M Mewtwo-EX / Jolteon-EX – LL (1-1-1)

This was by far the most frustrating. Going into the match I was confident that my Dedenne and Jirachi would give me enough space and time to set up all my Greninja. Game one I had a death Hand from start to finish. Game two was more promising, at least it looked like it was. I had to draw through 40 cards to hit my first two Energy, I managed to use them to KO a M Mewtwo and a Zoroark thanks to Greninja and Dedenne. The energy struggle continued for the rest of the game, I never drew into it consistently, I had all my Greninja Break on the board while my opponent wasn’t able to find her third M Mewtwo (it was either prized or discarded). I tried my luck using Bubble to stall and got heads, but a well played Hex Maniac by my opponnent sealed the game. At this time I was disappointed and knew I had no margin for error if I wanted a shot at Top 8.

R4 Stijn De Winter – M Rayquaza EX – WLW (2-1-1)

I was not that confident going into round four, but I was determined to win all my following rounds. MegaRay wasn’t the ideal opponent to face but beating it gave an incredible boost. We both had a game with bad draws resulting in a win and a loss. Game three went my way, I managed to use all my tech cards and the Dedenne and Jirachi did show why they were included in my list.

R5 Timmy Claes – Garchomp / Gallade – WW (3-1-1)

This match-up was mine to loose, it is a favorable one and I was glad my opponent turned a Gible at the start of the game because I was fearing to face another Greninja mirror. This was by far the most fun match to play since we had a nice conversation and Timmy is in my opinion the kind of player you want to face in a Pokemon game, always friendly and sportsmanlike. We had a small issue with an Ace Trainer play, thanks to him we both avoided a warning. Greninja has a huge advantage over Garchomp so I managed to get another win, although I have to say that the Gallade engine worked consistently and made it so this Garchomp deck has a decent chance at taking Greninja down.

R6 Brent Hermans – Greninja Break – WW (4-1-1)

Another mirror and it was by far the hardest one.  Game one was a typical Greninja mirror although Brent had his Greninja out earlier because I missed my Energy attachment for early on. He took two early Prize cards and I prized a BKT greninja that made it harder for me to keep my two Greninja alive. I was prepared for the match-up and managed to use Delinquent and my two Muscle Band to make up for the priced Greninja. He knocked out my First Break, and dropped his Shadow Stitch lock to get the kill on the second one. Little did he know that I had a Sacred Ash, 2 Dive Ball and a Wally in my hand. I used The greninja Break and XY Greninja to sweep his Bench, and he could never recover from this. Game two my opponent went all in as there wasn’t enough time left to play it out slowly, he pulled of a turn two Greninja Break and he came close to sweep my starters of the board, but I managed to survive and took the game cause he ran out of steam. Really enjoyed this matchup and the mental game Brent plays, certainly something that I can improve on, and it shows that playing Pokemon has more sides to it then you would think.


After a slow start I was hoping to still make Top Cut but I bubbled out, seems a bit ironic to bubble with a Greninja deck, might be the Froakie curse. After all I was extremely pleased with the way I managed to fight back to the higher tables, something I did not expect after losing round three. In my opinion I proved that I can compete with the big guys, and I am looking forward to see what next season will bring. There are no regrets regarding the deck choice and I feel like the build and the techs made the difference between an average result or a good one. Sometimes following the hype isn’t a bad thing, as long as you put your own stamp on the deck and play it because you believe you can beat anything out there. The only change I would consider is replacing Delinquent by Hex Maniac, it has more playability and it can make a huge difference when facing another Greninja deck. So my advice: Just believe the hype!

Going Up Stream: Youry De Bruyn 11th Place

Pokemon (25)

4x Vespiquen (AOR #10)4x Combee (AOR #9)4x Raichu (XY #43)4x Pikachu (XY #42)1x Jolteon-EX (GEN #28)4x Shaymin-EX (RSK #77)2x Unown (AOR #30)2x Jirachi (PRXY #XY67)

Trainers (28)

4x Professor Sycamore (XY #122)1x Judge (BKT #143)1x Lysandre (FLF #104)1x Teammates (PRC #160)1x Skyla (BKP #122)1x AZ (PHF #117)1x Hex Maniac (AOR #75)4x VS Seeker (PHF #109)4x Ultra Ball (RSK #93)2x Level Ball (AOR #76)1x Town Map (BKT #150)1x Super Rod (BKT #149)3x Muscle Band (XY #121)3x Battle Compressor (PHF #92)

Energy (7)

4x Double Colorless Energy (GEN #74)3x Lightning Energy (BLW #108)
“Every ‘boss’ has it’s weak spot, you just have to find and abuse it.”

Another way to go about picking your deck is to predict the meta and build something that punishes the people who follow the hype or that play the strongest decks. Vespiquen / Raichu really fits inside this box. The tournament was likely to be filled with Greninja Break and Mega Ray and I was glad to see Youry had the balls to give it a shot. If you see yourself as a player that likes to analyze the meta and craft a unique deck that abuses the meta’s weak spot, this story is all about it. Just like in video games where every boss has it’s weak spot, you just have to find and abuse it.


Hey there, my name is Youry De Bruyn,  I’m 27 and an avid Pokemon TCG player who’s been around since Expedition, Aquapolis, Skyridge and the early Nintendo takeover days. I’ve had a long break but started again because I missed the game I loved as a kid, and I loved the competitive nature of it. This was about when Primal Clash released. Since then I’ve topped several City Championships in Belgium in both Expanded and Standard, and I made Top 32 at the European Challenge Cup.

The Deck

The deck I piloted at Nationals was Vespiquen / Raichu. I was kind of wondering what to pick at first. I was testing a whole lot of Greninja, but I found it to be quite inconsistent at times, or having too many Frogadier prized and such. So I decided to build a deck from scratch a week before the tournament. It needed to have the ability to counter the three top decks of the current meta game, being M Rayquaza, Greninja and Night March. So I figured Vespiquen and Raichu were my two best attackers to cover these, first and foremost because of Weakness, secondly because of mostly giving one Prize a piece per Pokemon and lastly because it’s a comfort pick for me, I’ve played several variants of Raichu / Vespiquen in the past for fun and tried it at a Regional once or twice. To go further into detail, since I was playing a deck with 25 Pokemon I didn’t include many Trainer tech cards and went for pure consistency. I felt like my Supporter line-up needed at least Judge, Hex Maniac and Lysandre. Next came Teammates, and honestly this was the real MVP card of the entire tournament. The ability to search for whatever you want is godlike. The only one-offs I really wanted in the deck were Town Map and Super Rod. The Town Map along with the aforementioned Teammates made it so I didn’t lack any resources for the first five – six Turns in the game, which is how long I wanted most of my games to last. Anything I needed I could just pick out of my Prizes because of this beautiful card. The Super Rod was to make sure I had the Lightning Energy for my Jirachi and Jolteon-EX. (Sycamore does not love me at all, I tell you.) Because of these two cards being of great importance and me having turns where I didn’t really need to play a Supporter, Skyla made its way in, to search for Town Map or to cycle herself for a VS Seeker to get a Lysandre or Hex Maniac. Same reasoning for AZ, picking up a Shaymin-EX when you’ve nothing else to do, or to get that annoying starter Unown out of the Active spot without offering up Energy is pretty decent. (which is also one of the reasons I only played 2 Unown.)

Tournament Overview

R1 ?? – M Manectric-EX / Raikou – WW (1-0-0)

Pretty straight forward match, was versus a newer player, unfortunately he couldn’t do much.

R2 Daphne Vanden Broeck – Night March / Vespiquen – LL (1-1-0)

By far my worst match-up possible. I tried offering some resistance with a Turn two Jolteon both games, but her playing mostly Vespiquen made me lose quite easily.

R3 Tim Moens – Yveltal / Zoroark / Gallade – WW (2-1-0)

First game was basically all Raichu while he had only one Yveltal XY and an Yveltal-EX benched. Game two he managed to get Gallade out pretty early, and we traded Prizes evenly. I remember taking my fifth Prize with a Vespiquen that had my last Energy on it, but fortunately he couldn’t KO it.

R4 Giel Weeghmans – Night March – LWW (3-1-0)

I drew into a lot of stuff I couldn’t do anything with game one, it was a quick scoop on my part. In game two Giel ended up with trying to dig for his Parallel City since I started with two benched Pokemon, him benching four Shaymin-EX while doing so. He didn’t draw what he needed and I charged up Jolteon-EX for the win. Same thing happened game three, he couldn’t deal with the Jolteon. He only had one Escape Rope teched for it.

R5 Sen Cauberg – Night March – LWL (3-2-0)

This was the hardest and most intense match of the entire tournament. His list included Pokemon Catchers, and that took me completely off-guard. Game one, two and three ended up in a battle of wits, trading blows each and every time. Game one he destroyed me because I couldn’t get my Jirachi out of the Active spot in time. Game two I won mainly because of a Judge where I was ahead, I got an Ultra Ball and he drew nothing. Game three was intense, I was ahead in Prizes, I made sure I had no Shaymin on my bench, but he made an amazing play which included Teammates for Puzzles into Pokemon Catcher and Target Whistle, where he basically killed off a Shaymin-EX to get back ahead.

R6 Victor Van Moer – Greninja Break – WW – (4-2-0)

To be fair, after the match ended with Sen I was pretty upset because I got my worst match-up three times without meeting any Greninja or Mega Ray throughout the entirety of the tournament. And there were a lot of them. Then when I couldn’t make Top cut anymore I face my best match-up. Just my luck. Anyway, Victor is a very close friend of mine, so we made a deal to just have a best of three for fun and to split won boosters inbetween the two of us. This game was hilarious. I told him that I’d “Topdeck Lysandre for the Froakie kill” when he only had one Froakie benched and a Dedenne Active. I hit the Lysandre, and killed off his Froakie. Afterwards I died of laughter when he used his Dedenne’s Entrainment attack only to realize the other three Froakies were prized.


Looking back on the last National Championship ever, I must say that the atmosphere was so unique. I’ve not had this much fun in a long time. As for the tournament itself, I would have made Top cut if I got better match-ups. The tournament had a whole lot of Greninja, I feel I was very unlucky to hit three Night March decks out of the total seven players that brought it. Noteworthy, the deck did not lose a single time against Greninja and M Rayquaza during testing. I am really happy I didn’t take Greninja and took this instead. I’m confident that I made the right call to bring this and I have had a real blast playing it. It performed as I wanted to and looking back on it, I would not change a single card in the list. I would like to thank my local League in Antwerp for all of their support, playtesting and helping me improve the list for Nationals, As well as the rest of the Belgian Pokemon Community for being as awesome as it is. Thanks!

The Hard Counter: Jimmy Wuyts Top 4

Pokemon (13)

3x M Sceptile-EX (AOR #8)3x Sceptile-EX (AOR #7)1x Ariados (AOR #6)2x Chespin (PRXY #XY88)1x Jirachi (PRXY #XY67)2x Shaymin-EX (RSK #77)1x Hoopa-EX (AOR #36)

Trainers (37)

4x Professor Sycamore (XY #122)2x Lysandre (FLF #90)1x Fisherman (BKT #136)1x AZ (PHF #91)1x Judge (BKT #143)4x VS Seeker (PHF #109)4x Ultra Ball (RSK #93)4x Trainers' Mail (RSK #92)3x Super Scoop Up (FFI #100)2x Mega Turbo (RSK #86)1x Switch (BCR #135)1x Revitalizer (GEN #70)3x Sceptile Spirit Link (AOR #80)2x Assault Vest (BKT #133)4x Forest of Giant Plants (AOR #74)

Energy (10)

10x Grass Energy (XY #132)

I have to say when I saw Jimmy testing the M Sceptile-EX deck the week before Nationals it almost made me change my mind about playing  Greninja, cause it gets completely destroyed by this deck. But he told me he would not actually play it because it was to big of a risk, what made me feel happy. While Greninja was a much anticipated deck, dedicating your own pick to counter it hard seems a bit edgy. Let’s see how  Jimmy made his deck work to wreck the frogs and to not fall flat on the face against the rest of the contenders.


I’m Jimmy Wuyts, 26 year old. This was the second season I played Pokemon and the first successful season with results from all kind of tournaments like Cities, Regionals and now Nationals. For this season I just wanted to get my Worlds invite which I secured at the Regionals Apeldoorn and I’ll hope to get it the following seasons as well. Tickets to Worlds are already booked, so I’ll be glad to attend Worlds for the first time this year.

The Deck

After the last Expanded Regionals we started testing Standard again at our league (Puppetgym Antwerp) and I think I tested almost every viable deck in Standard varying from Greninja to TurboTina. The Belgian meta was very undefined so it was a total guess what decks would be played so I chose to test all of them. I mostly tested against Night March, MegaRay and Greninja because I expected these the most. Because of this I chose to create a M Sceptile-EX deck because it was unbeatable by Greninja, because of Weakness and Theta Stop, which makes Giant Water Shuriken useless. I started from a list which won a UK Regional in November and added a few new cards. The Assault Vest was really good against Night March and MegaRay and with the four Forest of Giant Plants it was really easy to get an Assault Vest M Sceptile-EX into play on T1, which then can’t be KO’d by both Night March or MegaRay. I think the Night March and MegaRay match-ups were the worst ones, so I tested most against them and that is also the reason why I added the Jirachi, it could give me an extra turn to find a missing card to start the healing (for Example Super Scoop Up, Energy). Another thing I noticed is that the Energy could easily be depleted because you had to Retreat to attack with another M Sceptile-EX to heal the first one. First I played an Energy Retrieval for this but after testing against Greninja I remembered Fisherman existed and this helped me a lot. Because after you have two M Sceptile-EX ready and they can’t OHKO you, you can just switch between them, play Fisherman and attach the Energy whilst healing. One card I didn’t add which I would play in every other deck was Hex Maniac, just because I thought I wouldn’t need it because of the good Greninja match-up. The day before Nationals I was still undecided and tested Vileplume/ M Sceptile-EX, M Sceptile-EX, Turbo Toad and Yveltal / Zoroark / Gallade the most. The morning of Nationals I already decided not to play Vileplume / M Sceptile-EX and was debating the deck to choose. The M Sceptile-EX would be the fun and easy choice depending on my match-ups and Yveltal / Zoroark / Gallade had a better match-up against all decks. I then decided I wanted a fun and straightforward deck and chose to play M Sceptile-EX.

Tournament Overview

R1 Jamie Dierckx – Metal – WW (1-0-0)

Didn’t know what to expect from this match-up but it didn’t really matter as my deck set up perfectly both games. Both games I had two Mega Sceptile set up T1 so the turns afterwards I could easily Retreat and heal the other Mega while playing Supporters like Fisherman and Lysandre.

R2 Bram Molenaar – Wailord-EX/ Aegislash-EX / Giratina-EX / Dedenne / Durant (WALGDD) – WW (2-0-0)

Going in this game I thought this would be an easy win thanks to my possibility to OHKO Wailord-EX. But because we knew each others decks he didn’t bench one Wailord-EX and only used his other Pokemon like Giratina-EX, Aegislash-EX and Lucario-EX to soak up damage because I couldn’t OHKO them. The first match was a fast one because he couldn’t keep healing. During the second match my Ariados was prized and because of that it became a really hard game. I had to Mega Evolve so I could OHKO his Dedenne and Durant to take some Prizes and hope to get the Ariados (but it was the last Prize). Because of this he could block me with Giratina-EX. I found a Super Scoop Up so I could revert to regular Sceptile-EX and hope to Poison him with Sleep Poison and do more damage with Unseen Claw. I also had to keep a close watch on my Hand size because he played both Delinquent and Durant FLF so he could punish a small and a big Hand. I think this was the match where I had to think the most about every move I took, and my opponent played very good.

R3 Victor van Moer – Greninja – WW (3-0-0)

This was the match-up I wished for and the reason I chose my deck. It’s a pity I had to play against a good friend (again) so I’m sorry for the bad match-up. The only thing he could ever do was try to Bubble me after an Ace Trainer, but I think there was only one Turn where he flipped heads and I had no Switch or Super Scoop Up in hand to “heal” the Paralyze.

R4 Arne Van Braeckel – Yveltal / Zoroark / Gallade – LL (3-1-0)

I  thought this was an even match-up but he showed me wrong. The first game I had a really bad setup after a Shaymin-EX start and couldn’t get a M Sceptile-EX for turns. He started Yveltal BKT so he could damage my benched Sceptile-EX and Shaymin-EX as well. It was too late for me to come back after that. The second game I also had a  Shaymin-EX start but could get a Mega Sceptile on the first turn, but after that my draw stopped and I couldn’t seem to hit my Energy as five of them were prized. So his Yveltal-EX took down most of my Pokemon and at the end of the game Yveltal BKT finished it again. But he played both games very well and I’m not sure if I could take a win even if my deck ran normal, he always had options to hit me hard on every Turn with another Yveltal or Zoroark.

R5 Pedro Medina – Greninja – WW (4-1-0)

Another Greninja and just what I needed. He also tried to Bubble me a lot, but flipped a lot of tails and I had outs most of the time.

R6 Sen Caubergh – Night March – ID (4-1-1)

Top 8 Kevin Breëns – Greninja – WW

Another friend which was playing with a deck that I lent him so I knew the exact amount of every card in the deck. So I was Top 8 and I saw that there where three Greninja in the Top 8 (of course I was happy to see this). Only thing to say about this game is that we both had like ten Turns of draw-pass in the first game but otherwise there isn’t a lot to say anymore about this match-up.

Top 4 Sen Caubergh – Night March – WLL

All the Greninja were out of the tournament so I had to face another deck now. This match-up is favored for the Night March player but this wouldn’t stop me from trying to take the win. In the first game my deck set up good and I had to bench only Sceptile without using Shaymin-EX or Hoopa-EX. I was surprised by the Startling Megaphone to remove my Assault Vest so he could kill a Sceptile-EX. At the end of the game when I had three Prizes left to his two I saw that he had two Night Marchers benched so he couldn’t kill my Mega Sceptile, so I Lysandre’d his Shaymin and took the game from there. In the second and third game I had to bench Hoopa-EX and/or Shaymin to get to my Sceptile and this is just too hard with his Pokemon Catchers, Lysandre and Target Whistle so he took both games convincingly.


I think I had a lot of luck with my match-ups but would have liked to see if the deck really works against other decks as well, but I won’t complain with the results. I chose the deck because I thought there would be a lot of Greninja and it seemed I was correct. The only cards I really missed were the other Ariados and a Super Rod to counter the Target Whistle after a Shaymin-EX or Hoopa-EX was discarded or KO’d. The Revitalizer is easily switched for a Super Rod and I think it would be a better play in most of the cases.

The Comfort Pick: Sen Cauberg National Champion

Pokemon (15)

4x Joltik (PHF #26)4x Pumpkaboo (PHF #44)4x Lampent (PHF #42)3x Shaymin-EX (RSK #106)

Trainers (41)

3x Professor Sycamore (BKP #107)1x Judge (BKT #143)1x AZ (PHF #117)1x Hex Maniac (AOR #75)1x Delinquent (BKP #98)1x Lysandre (FLF #104)1x Teammates (PRC #160)4 x VS Seeker (RSK #110)4x Ultra Ball (PLF #122)4x Trainers' Mail (AOR #100)4x Battle Compressor (PHF #92)4x Puzzle of Time (BKP #109)2x Pokémon Catcher (DEX #111)1x Escape Rope (PLS #120)1x Startling Megaphone (FLF #97)1x Target Whistle (PHF #106)1x Town Map (BKT #150)2x Fighting Fury Belt (BKP #99)1x Float Stone (PLF #99)3x Dimension Valley (PHF #93)

Energy (4)

4x Double Colorless Energy (HS #103)

Here comes another quote: “The definition of a best friend is a person who you value above other friends in your life, someone you have fun with, someone you trust and someone in whom you confide.” Transport this feeling to Pokemon and there you have it, your comfort pick. It’s a deck you value above all others, a deck you have fun with and most important, a deck that you trust and that has no secrets for you. So when that comfort pick happens to be one of the most consistent and hardest hitting decks all year, then you are golden. Sen Caubergs Night March decks runs like a jet and he has the skill and the experience to pilot it like a boss. Take the time to read his story cause when you face him at worlds he might have ran over you before you had to chance to talk.


Hello everyone, my name is Sen Caubergh, I’m 19 years old and I live in Belgium. Since last year I study law school at university Hasselt and that’s one of the reasons why I can’t play that much anymore. My hobbies are playing football, tennis and of course Pokemon! I have been playing Pokemon for three years now and this year I really want to go to Worlds. Before my Nationals I needed 80 more CP to secure my Worlds invite, so I only had to make Top Cut. This year I decided to play Night March, I already planned on playing Night March five months ago since I felt like this deck has the most potential and I really love playing it. I had more success in the past with this deck: Top 16 ECC Arnhem, first place City Championship Ghent and three LC wins.

The Deck

I tested a lot with Night March two weeks before the tournament and my test results were obvious, you beat everything except for Turn one Item lock and you lose to a good Greninja player that doesn’t miss a crucial card or draws dead. So there was only one problem in the meta and that was the rising popularity of Greninja Break. It isn’t a good match-up for Night March, because they can easily stall you and get rid of your Double Colorless Energy with Jirachi’s stardust attack. However stalling is not the problem thanks to Puzzle Of Time but if they manage to get two Greninja Break, they can sweep your whole board. Obviously I was hoping not to face a lot of Greninja players at the tournament, but unfortunately I already faced one in the first round and I lost 2-0. Most people thought that Jolteon-EX was a good card to beat Night March, but I think that Jolteon-EX is way overrated. One of the reasons I played two Catchers was to take easy KO’s on Shaymin-EX and Hoopa-EX on the first turn since you could hit heads on your first turn and just KO an EX with only five Marchers in the Discard Pile. Another reason was that these Catchers were really good against Jolteon-EX players, because you could Target Whistle other EX Pokemon on their Bench and just catch or Lysandre them for two Prizes. Setting up with only one Jolteon in the Active position is too risky, so they have to put another Pokemon down and if you manage to get Escape Rope or Lysandre, you can force the Jolteon back in the Active position and take a KO. One of my other tech cards was Delinquent, which was a last-minute tech. I originally had one Acro Bike in the list, but that seemed a bit odd, so I decided to play one Delinquent to have a surprise effect against other players. If they make one mistake and only have three cards in their Hand, you basically win the game with a good timed Delinquent play. This Delinquent helped me a lot in the first game of Top 8.

Tournament Overview

R1 Kevin Breëns – Greninja Break – LL (0-1-0)

R2 Andy Ghijs – Crobat/ Gengar-EX – WW (1-1-0)

R3 Andy Severijns – Trevenant BREAK – WW (2-1-0)

R4 Jari Honraedt – MegaRay – WW (3-1-0)

R5 Youry De Bruyn – Raichu / Vespiquen – WLW (4-1-0)

R6 Jimmy Wuyts – M Sceptile-EX – ID (4-1-1)

Top 8 Pedro Medina – Greninja Break – WW

Top 4 Jimmy Wuyts – Mega Sceptile-EX – LWW

Finals Daphne Vanden Broek – Nightmarch  / Vespiquen – WW


I think that Night March will still be strong in the following tournaments because they have the new Mew from Fates Collide which gives you a decent Greninja Break match-up because they can’t stall you with the Stardust.

While I was editing my text, I saw that PokeBeach announced the new ‘Karen’ Supporter.

So, I don’t think Night March will see a lot of play in the future.

Karen – Trainer

We’re sorry about Night March. Each player shuffles all Pokemon in his or her discard pile into his or her deck.

You may play only 1 Supporter card during your turn (before your attack).

Hopefully I can make it to worlds this year, but I think that Top 22 isn’t possible anymore since I only have 720 CP at the moment. We’ll see what the future brings and I will certainly try to achieve Top 22 next year. But the main reason why I play Pokemon is because the community is amazing and therefore I want to thank everyone who is part of this beautiful game!

Tournament Top 8

  1. Sen Cauberg – Night March
  2. Daphne Vanden Broeck – Night March / Vespiquen
  3. Arne Van Braeckel – YZG
  4. Jimmy Wuyts – M Sceptile-EX
  5. Kevin Breëns – Greninja Break
  6. William De Plancke – M Manectric-EX / Jolteon-EX / Garbodor
  7. Samuel Schaillée – Greninja Break
  8. Pedro Medina – Greninja Break
The winning deck!

Closing Thoughts

Thanks for reading I hope everyone liked this article. We enjoyed playing at our Nationals and writing about. The Belgian Pokemon scene isn’t the most well known but don’t be fooled by our countries size, cause it withholds a whole bunch of talented players. There are more reasons why people pick certain decks for important tournaments, but I think a lot of players can match themselves with the ones that were highlighted. A guarantee for success doesn’t exist, but does that mean we don’t want to strife for perfection? No, pick your poison, play it with confidence and don’t forget to have fun. Just one more horrible quote and I am out (it is the last one I promise): ” Give a Trainer a decklist and he wil Git Gud for one day, teach a trainer how to create decklists and he will Git Gud for a lifetime”

Feel free to share your own Nationals story, I will be happy to ready it.


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