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Jose Marrero

A Closer Look at the Finalist Decks of the 2017 Pokémon World Championships

Jose examines the two decks that made it all the way to the finals of the 2017 Pokémon World Championships.

08/30/2017 by Jose Marrero

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Hello again, 60cards readers! This next article is a little late but nonetheless, I'll be analyzing the two finalist decks of the 2017 Pokémon World Championships. The two finalists were Diego Cassiraga who was our 2017 World Champion piloting Gardevoir-GX/Octillery. Then we have our runner-up Naoto Suzuki who piloted Golisopod-GX/Garbodor. Before I go over their decks let me quickly go over how I did at Worlds which I was fortunate enough to attain my 5th consecutive invite which I was ecstatic to have achieved. I had to play in Day 1 with many other great players and I ended up playing M Rayquaza-EX/Metal which should be no surprise to you. I was almost certain that we would have 6 rounds going into Day 1 which is what we had and I felt that M Rayquaza-EX/Metal was good enough to get me at least four wins or at the very least three wins and three ties. I ultimately ended Day 1 with a record of 3-0-3 where I IDed the last round to my buddy Mike Newey guaranteeing the both of us moving onto Day 2. Of course knowing me I didn't change my deck choice or list as I felt the deck and list ran well.

I would have been happy just making Top 32 but in the end, I finished with a record of 4-3-1 placing me at 51st. Not quite what I wanted but another Top 64 isn't the worst finish even though that netted me zero prizes. All in all Worlds 2017 was my favorite Worlds to date that I've attended because of all the new people I met and memories I'll never forget. To finish off the intro I want to give a couple shout outs. First to the one and only Israel Sosa for picking us up and dropping us back to the airport. Marco Fulco and his son Lorenzo as well as the Hurleys for letting me crash with them and lastly to all the people that came up to me to say hi or to sign something for them. Couldn't have asked for a better community and I'm glad I'm apart of this awesome community and I wouldn't trade it for the world. I can't wait to see what the new season has in store for us all!

With that said, let's now take a closer look at our current World Champion Diego Cassiraga's winning list.


I'm not surprised at all to see Gardevoir-GX/Octillery winning Worlds because it was on everyone's radar and everyone knew how powerful it was going into Worlds. I actually played against four of them on Day 2 and went 3-0-1 against them. Of course like I said I was playing M Rayquaza-EX/Metal. The general concept of this deck is to get as many Gardevoir-GX out as possible so you can abuse its ability, Secret Spring in which lets you attach a Fairy Energy from your hand onto one of your Pokémon. With multiple Gardevoir-GX out that means Secret Spring stacks making for bigger damage out puts. Gardevoir-GX's main attack, Infinite Force does 30 damage for each energy attached to both active Pokémon so you can see how quick and fast Gardevoir-GX can start taking one hit KO's. It's GX attack, Twilight GX is so so good against Garbodor decks because you can shuffle back in any 10 cards which can be items. But overall Twilight GX is one of the best GX attacks to date. This was actually Diego's third time in Top 8 of Worlds which alone is ridiculous to have achieved. Diego finally got his Worlds win and that proves that you should never give up on that dream. Third times the charm they say huh? But yeah enough rambling let's now dive into Diego's list and see his card choices. I know Pablo also made Top 8 at Worlds with Gardevoir-GX/Octillery so I'll talk about their differences a little. Both Diego and Pablo played a 4-3-3-1 line of Gardevoir-GX with a Gallade.

That should tell you that you don't need the fourth Gardevoir-GX but instead should still play Gallade as it combos nicely with Octllery with both players again played in their lists. However, Diego decided to go with a 2-1 Octillery line as opposed to just a 1-1 line like Pablo. I can get behind this because by playing a 1-1 you can prize either piece which can be troublesome but if you play a 2-1 line it's less likely to just prize the Octillery so you can afford to prize one Remoraid. Gallade not only helps with Octillery but it's attack, Sensitive Blade can do 130 damage which is enough to one hit KO a number of relevant Pokémon for just a Double Colorless Energy. It can easily take a one hit KO on Darkrai-EX or GX's which is nice even though Turbo Darkrai-EX was slim to none. Both Diego and Pablo played one copy of Diancie which I like because you can just sit back and evolve everything until its the right time to attack with Gardevoir-GX. Opening Diancie is your ideal starter or Alolan Vulpix in which only Diego ran. Diego knew the importance of just playing it slow and setting up which ultimately reigned him World Champion.

They both however played three Tapu Lele-GX which makes sense because not only are they great for searching out supporters but because it's Energy Drive attack takes Colorless Energy which can abuse Secret Spring and do some big damage at the same time. That's pretty much it as far as the Pokémon go. Diego's Pokémon line was pretty straight forward and standard I would say. Nothing too surprising there since that Pokémon looks very consistent. The only differences between Diego's and Pablo's Pokémon counts are literally that Diego played a second Remoraid and an Alolan Vulpix. Diego played two Guzma which Pablo played a 1-1 split which both is fine. One Hex Maniac I can see being clutch against decks like Greninja or Volcanion. Something huge that had to make a difference that Diego played unlike Pablo was Acerola. Diego actually beat Pablo in Top 8 and I can only imagine that Acerola had to be the MVP in that mirror match. Two Field Blower makes perfect sense because Garbotoxin shuts this deck down and you need to be able to abuse Secret Spring at a moments notice. The last inclusion that standard out is the one of Wonder Energy which Pablo too played. It was smart to play Wonder Energy because it blocks Espeon-GX from confusing Gardevoir-GX as well as blocks Espeon-EX from Devolving you. The rest of the list is standard so let's now head on over to the runner-up list.

Other card options


Diego went with two Guzma over playing any Lysandre. However, Pablo's list played one of each. Diego playing two Guzma makes sense because he didn't play any Float Stone, unlike Pablo where he opted to play two of them.


It was surprising to see Diego not playing Teammates. However, Pablo did which I think fits nicely in a deck like Gardevoir-GX where you can search for that Rare Candy play. Especially since Diego played Alolan Vulpix which will likely be a sacrifice tribute which can activate Teammates early on.


Pablo's Top 8 list played this card, however, Diego did not so obviously it's not needed but more of a luxury card. I would just play Super Rod like Diego did instead of two Rescue Stretcher.

Float Stone:

Having a Float Stone on Octillery is always nice or to try and get Diancie off turn one should you not open with it.

With that said, now we take a quick look at the runner-up list from Worlds.


I actually knew about this deck a week before Worlds because I saw Gustavo Wada playing it on his stream. At the ARG Invitational, I told Azul about the deck and he liked it, however, neither of us took it seriously which I obviously regret now that two were in Top 4 of Worlds. Golisopod-GX paired with Garbodor makes so much sense now because they both are easy to get going since they are stage 1 attackers. A turn two Golisopod-GX dishing out 120+ damage is not easy to take down especially since you can Acerola it back up and refresh it's hit points and attacks at the same time making it more difficult to take down. Garbodor acts as a late game sweeper and Garbotoxin shuts off ability in which this deck doesn't have much of anyway and you definitely want to shut off Flareon which Naoto knew how important Garbotoxin was going into Worlds.

Tapu Koko is mainly just to have that free retreater to go into once you Aerola or Guzma back into a fresh attacker namely another Golisopod-GX but at the same time great against Gyarados since Garbotoxin shuts off Mr. Mime and Machoke. This deck was definitely the sleeper deck going into Worlds as well as Ho-Oh-GX/Salazzle-GX and as always the Japanese players knew what they were doing. One Hex Maniac just in case Garbotoxin gets KOed or if the opponent Field Blowers away your Tools. The Teammates I also like because getting any Two cards can make for easier revenge KO's. Four Float Stone I agree on because Naoto favored how good Garbotoxin is. The one Heavy Ball may seem odd but if you look closer at the Pokémon then Heavy Ball makes perfect sense. I like that it can search out over 50% of the Pokémon especially Wimpod. Overall I loved Naoto's list which gave me an idea at a League Cup I attended where I placed in Top 4.

Other card options


Sho Sasaki played a copy of this card in his Top 8 Worlds list which is great for being immune to Espeon-GX's Psybeam attack in which Confuses you. But at the same time blocks, Divide GX from doing any damage should any of your Pokémon have a Rainbow Energy attached. Or against opposing Drampa-GX's so they can't discard your Rainbow Energy. Not to mention Magearna-EX can one hit KO Gardevoir-GX which overall makes Magearna-EX a solid inclusion.


Again Sho Sasaki ran one copy in his Top 8 Worlds list. Drampa-GX overall is a great attacker in any given deck. It's quite versatile since all of its attacks take Colorless Energy and its GX attack will help any deck from having a dead hand.

Multi Switch:

Once again Sho Sasaki's Top 8 list from Worlds also ran one copy of Multi Switch. I can see where it could come in the clutch especially if you're playing Pokémon like Magearna-EX or Drampa-GX as I mentioned. Catching the opponent off guard with Magearna-EX against Gardevoir-GX can be game changing or for using Drampa-GX's Berserk or even both of Golisopod-GX's attacks that take multiple energy.

Closing Thoughts

That will conclude this short little article on the finalist decks of the 2017 World Championships. The Worlds format will be done with soon and with that comes the new rotation. I'll have a longer article coming up soon, however, this time talking about expanded since Fort Wayne Regionals is this weekend. If you see me there be sure to come say hi. Congrats again to the two finalists!

Like always, if you haven't already, check out The Chaos Gym on YouTube and Twitch for updates and player interviews, as well as live streaming from Grafton Roll and Rahul Reddy. If you want to help support my team, be sure to check out Team ARG's Pokémon page on Facebook, Team ARG Pokémon-TCG for tons of decklists from great players. My Twitter handle is down below if you want to follow me.

If you have any questions, then please feel free to leave me a comment below or message me on Facebook. I'll be sure to get to them as soon as possible.

As usual, if you enjoyed reading this article, then please consider giving it a thumbs up. If you want to see a specific type of article or topic next time, don't hesitate to give me ideas down below, and I'll consider them. As always, keep an eye out for more articles to come. Until next time!

-Twitter @Jose_MarreroTCG

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