Momoko is in Stealth Mode. Sneaky little girl. Can anyone see her?
What They Say
We finally welcome the Nationals for the individual tournaments. Saki needs to regain her strength with the ones that remain in this tough competition. Momoko goes into stealth mode for the strong, hard battle. At that time, Saki recalls the intensive training she had during training camp.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
So, Stealth Momo has finally revealed herself. Or rather, the opposite, as she seems to have disappeared from the view of the other players. It appears that Hisa is alert to the problem, but Momoko dismisses her as being too late. However, the real surprise is Saki, who takes Hisa's training camp advice to treat the table as an online game. When she does that, she is able to see through Momoko's stealth ability and get a comeback victory to win the table that round.
In Saki's second match, she has to go up against Kazue Nanpo, the South Wind expert. At first, however, other players take the initiative, but once the South Wind blows (literally, as we get another silly special effect with the change in prevailing wind), Nanpo starts to exert herself, winning hands and racking up the points. Except that once again, when things seem bad, Saki starts smiling again. That's because, as we all know, Saki seems to only improve when the chips are down, and she manages to come back with a massive hand, in her usual tsumo after a kong style, and wins the room, putting her into 3rd place overall in the tournament. It looks like there might be a place for her in the Nationals.
In the other matches, Nodoka defeats some serious competition to assure her place in the Nationals. The final spot, however, seems firmly in the grasp of Kazekoshi's Mihoko Fukuji. At the final table, she faces Hisa, Touka Ryuumonbuchi and Yumi Kajiki. The battle is fierce, but Mihoko seems to be in sufficient control to win the table and glide through. On the final hand of the match, however, even though Mihoko has opened up her special eye, Hisa finally manages to defeat her by changing up her hand at the last moment. Hisa manages to win the battle, but unfortunately cannot win the war, as Mihoko's point lead in the tournament was too large for Hisa to overtake her in the overall standings. So ends the tournament to see which individual players will make it to the Nationals.
Saki started off in a tough position, playing against an opponent who specializes in disappearing (literally) from the table, and against the master strategist, Hisa. But in the end, her monstrous ability with the tiles prevails. In the second match, we have monster pitted against monster, but the result is never really in doubt. So ends the Individual Qualifiers. Now we know who will be playing for themselves at the National Tournament. It's been a long road, but this stage is finally over. There was some exciting play at times, and it appears that training camp exercises can occasionally come in handy in a spot. Saki is her usually clumsy self in all of this. It's been interesting to see all of them playing mahjong, but I can't help but want to have a little respite from it at this point.
Japanese 2.0 Language, English Subtitles
Apple Mac Mini with 1GB RAM, Mac OS 10.5 Leopard.