Alex Schemanske and Santino Tarquino win Pokémon 25th Anniversary Players Cup 2021 Invitational

Today we have news related to competitive Pokémon, specifically the Players Cup 2021 Invitational. As we informed you previously, we were able to follow this competition live to see the VGC and TCG battles in action with some of the best players in the world. The schedules were as follows:

  • Friday 13 August at 18:00 UTC the preshow took place.
  • Saturday 14th August at 16:00 UTC was the first day of battles.
  • Saturday 15 August at 16:00 UTC was the second day of fights.
  • Well, this time it has been announced that Alex Schemanske and Santino “SupahSanti” Tarquino have taken home the title of Champion of Champions in JCC and VGC respectively. Here are the details that have been shared:


  • Santino, the original Players Cup winner defeated 2013 World Champion Arash “Mean” Ommati, 2016 World and Players Cup III Champion Wolfe “Wolfey” Glick, and 2018 World Champion Paul “Ralfdude90” Ruiz to reach the final.
  • In the final, Santi faced 2017 World Champion Ryota “Barudoru” Otsubo, who ended up being the only player to win a set against Santi. Barudoru forced a bracket restart with a 2-1 set, but Santino confidently closed things out 2-0 to win the event.
  • However, as The Pokémon Company announced after the rosters were finalised, both games were going to have secret “final bosses” that would challenge the winning players. In the case of the VGC, the winner was Ray Rizzo, a three-time consecutive world champion in 2010, 2011 and 2012.


  • Schemanske picked up where she left off after winning the Players Cup IV, giving up just one set on her way to winning the Invitational. This included victories over 2019 World Champion Henry Brand and fellow Players Cup winners Natalie Millar and Azul Garcia Griego.
  • Griego would eventually fight his way out of the loser’s bracket to reach the final, even taking a set from Schemanske to force a bracket reset in a sweep, before Schemanske took the 2-1 victory and the title of Champion of Champions with his Rapid Strike Urshifu VMAX deck.
  • Like the VGC winner, Schemanske had to face his own final boss after winning the event, and his opponent was a champion from over 15 years ago, Tsuguyoshi Yamato. Yamoto was a multiple Pokémon TCG World Finalist and 2004 World Champion. Schemanske took the series 2-0, but it was another great performance from a former champion.

Finally, after the 25th Anniversary Players Cup 2021 Invitational, the next event for fans will be the Pokémon Global Exhibition 2021, which will be an invitation-only VGC tournament to be held during the month of October.