The current top 10 in the ITC went through quite the shaking up the past two weeks. With a few number 1s and top 10s dropping far down, or completely off the list. The Drukhari continue their path of destruction and it seems like every day there’s a new person playing the army!
Memes and joking aside there has definitely been a massive influx of players to the faction, at least from what you can tell via online discussions. So it should come as no surprise that with the increased power of the faction that the new ITC number 1, and number 3, feature Drukhari in part or in whole within their new list builds.
James Kelling is a great player, if you haven’t followed competitive 40k closely you may not recognize the name but he is in contention at most events he attends. He plays smart and currently he seems to be riding the Drukhari wave, with a little Aeldari mixed in for good measure.
With 11 tournaments under his belt for the season, and several first-place finished including a GT, James rocketed to number one with his 5th place finish at the Dallas Open which was a well-attended Major. Indeed, 5th place at the Dallas Open netted him 14 more points than his first-place win at the Spring Up GT. Oh, and both those high finishes were with Drukhari! A mix of Aeldari and Drukhari is something the third place in the ITC knows a lot about, Sean Nayden recently placed well with a list that utilized both pointy-eared Xenos races!
With only 5 total events logged so far in the 2021 season, Sean Nayden is still burning up the field. 4 first-place finishes including a Major, the Clutch City, and 2nd place at the aforementioned Dallas Open! Those two alone give Sean 460 ITC points! Sean is a meticulous player who has used some form of Aeldari for a long, long time, in fact, I can’t remember an LVO I judged that he didn’t take Aeldari far into the event. He’s won Rennaisance man at LVO multiple times and you can join him for live-streamed painting sessions regularly. I don’t join him because it just makes me feel bad about my own painting skills, but he’s quite good at both the playing and painting part of the hobby. The second place in the ITC currently brings the big bad Death Guard.
Mark Aescht also has a plethora of first-place finishes with his Death Guard and two very respectable finishes at Majors so far. Placing 20th at Clutch City and 14th at the Dallas Open is nothing to sneeze at. Mark also is a member of the US Army Esports team. The military branches have begun using 40k as one fo the avenues of outreach via their Esports groups. Red Powell and Douglas Jones have been doing a lot of work with their respective branches of the military in terms of utilizing 40k as a part of their Esports. It’s cool to see one of their members in 2nd place overall in the ITC. If you want to hear more about this check out the TFG Radio Episode where Adam interviews them. If you’re a fan of quick battle reports check out TFG Radio’s YouTube page where we post short-form battle reports!
The top 10 overall right now features some very familiar names, some of them are names that pop in and out of the rankings every season, some are arriving to the top ranks earlier than in previous years. The nice thing about the season having a slow start/burn due to the various COVID-19 restrictions in place around the US and the slow removal of them overall as vaccinations increase and the need for closures decline is that the top 10 is far more fluid than in previous seasons. I look forward to seeing more names coming and going out of these top spots as the season progresses.