The Saki duo of Amae Koromo and Kataoka Yuuki proved insurmountable for their opponents, as the two handily advanced to their respective Block Finals of Anime Saimoe Tournament 2010.
Koromo scored a convincing victory over her closest competitior – To Aru Kagaku no Railgun’s Shirai Kuroko en route to her second consecutive Block Finals appearance. The third place finisher for the Block D bout was Clannad’s Fujibayashi Kyou.
Yuuki also roared into her second straight Block Finals match after dismantling Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu’s Himeji Mizuki and K-On!’s Manabe Nodoka. The two wins by Saki represented their 10th and 11th wins overall in the tournament.
1st 492 votes | Kataoka Yuuki @ Saki
2nd 235 votes | Himeji Mizuki @ Baka to Test to Shoukanjuu
3rd 199 votes | Manabe Nodoka @ K-ON!
1st 501 votes | Amae Koromo @ Saki
2nd 344 votes | Shirai Kuroko @ To Aru Kagaku no Railgun
3rd 147 votes | Fujibayashi Kyou @ Clannad: Another World, Kyou Chapter
Impressive stuff from Saki once again, continuing to show that they’re really not to be counted out just yet, despite a slew of newcomers and golden returnees this year. Kuroko just got stopped cold by Koromo, and it was not even close. Then as expected Tacos just kinda formalized her slot to the Block Finals. I really love Kodomo’s victory there, giving me confidence that she’ll go all to the quarterfinals. Still can’t count out Kurimu just yet, but it’s a great sign for Koromo with yet another solid win. So in the end, expectedly 1-1 in picks (losing Nodoka, but it can’t be helped). So yeah, not really much to say, but I’m still surprised at how much Koromo styled, and again once more she is the hot favorite to Top 8 again. I sure hope so.
Let’s get to two exciting matches, though of different gravity. The Block D match features basically Hiro and Nanako, and Aruruu to be the third wheel out. Numbers and series mojo ultimately made me go Hiro, but I’m a bit skeptical about my choice. In any case, Nanako has a legit shot of winning this one too, but in the end Hidamari has the experience and perhaps better influence to take it in the end, and maybe they will. Pretty much a coinflip. But on the significance side, this match doesnt really offer that much, because realistically-speaking, in the end Block D is just either Koromo’s or Kurimu’s.
And now the most important match of Block C. Maria vs Hisa. Mii, the non-factor. Quite painful, for me because I really love these two characters. Top15-20 material, both of them, and they both need wins, badly. This is how far Hisa has come with Louise foiling her bid to win Block C last year, while Maria lost to eventual champion Taiga in the Top 32. In any case, both have something to prove. But this match offers more than that.
Hisa winning does advance her further, but she’s got more popular Saki characters waiting in the wings. So yeah tough situation for her, making her the underdog regardless. As for Maria, 95% she’s playing for a slot in the quarterfinals, so veeeery important match for Hayate here. Also 3/3 for them this round, should she pull it off, and it will be vindication for Maria after all those years of tough losses. So yeah, so much in stake in this one. Strength-wise they’re pretty much even, but Saki is the superior faction. Other factions have an interest in this match by the way, since they would probably like to face the weaker Maria than Tacos or Nodoka or Mihoko. So yeah, after much deliberation I stuck with my guns on this one. Maria is the way to go.
So to recapitulate, predictions and picks coincide this time. Maria and Hiro. but these matches will be decided by a hairline, given how Hisa works, and how matched up today’s combatants are. Great day in Saimoe we have today.