I love to write, I wrote many tournament reports or non magic related articles in the past but this one might be the hardest one I had to write.
I would have loved to share stories about the Team World Cup in London or my latest tournament in Italy but instead I have to talk about what I did one month ago in the finals of the NEOS November tournament: I cheated.
It is strange to see it in writing as it isn’t in my DNA, during the match I tilted and took a split second bad decision, by no means what is planned and I knew the match was recorded, I didn’t think. It is not that I felt I deserved the win, no, I made a very bad move and I now have to live with it. I am in now way trying to excuse my behaviour or minimise what I did (nor will I in the future), I teach my kids that it is ok to make mistakes but that you have to take responsibility for what you did. I apply the same rule to my case.
I apologize again to Michael for playing dirty against him though we are good now.
I apologize to Jared for cheating in his tournament and disrespect his hard work running those.
I apologize to the NEOS community and the online webcam community.
I apologize to my teammates as we had to cancel the tournament we were organizing.
I apologize to the community as a whole for breaking the spirit of Old School.
The thing is, I truly love the game. Magic has been a huge part of my life since I started in 1995, this year I celebrate my 25th Magic anniversary, but I especially love playing with my old cards. Standard, Modern or even Legacy have no appeal to me. I love to play Swedish legal decks, I cherish my collection and the nostalgia factor resonates a lot with me. I am a spike at heart, I already admitted to that, but never before did I cross the line. In OS I had a perfect track record, I always took my losses graciously though, the only incident I had was dropping the F*** word to a topdecked Mind Twist (sorry again Mitja). Most of my friends I met them through the game, like my team mate Carl as we have been on the same team for those 25 years. I traveled the world for it and even worked for WotC.
I owe the game so much and I disrespected it.
Because of my mistake, not only was I unable to defend my title at KoT last month but it also meant I didn’t see one of my Dutch friends and have a beer with him to celebrate his future parenthood. Socializing is the prize you get for playing OS, not the 1st place prizes, there is no financial incentive playing OS, almost any tournament has a negative EV and I like it. When Lorenzo came to Belgium and he told me that traveling for OS was the future I doubted it, but I have to admit he was right as I traveled to Sweden, UK, Italy, Germany, France and the Netherlands to play the game last year.
What I am trying to say is that I love the format and its community, I tried to give back with my blog, a positive attitude and always offer advice when asked. So now I’d like to ask for an opportunity to redeem myself and regain my place in the community. I know things will never be the same again but I promise you will only get the best of me.
Finally, whatever the outcome for me, I want to thank the awesome people who showed support, from the unknown Australian who reached out to me to the people I got to learn through games or at tournaments who were concerned for me despite what I did, to my close friends who really helped me the last few weeks. I also want to personally thank Lorenzo, Megu and Magnus for the discussions we had and giving me hope I could, somehow, some time, get a second chance.