Okay, I need to rethink exactly what the worst XMT group draw for me could be, because they've rejigged the seedings so I'm in the first pot and introduced rules limiting how many people from each country can be in a group. See the post here for details!
We have 6 groups (A-F), that will have 4 competitors each. The top 6 rankings will own a top spot in the first 6 groups (so, Simon (A), Johannes (B), Jonas (C), Mark Anthony (D), Christian (E), and Ben (F)). Then we will split the rest of the competitors into 3 pools:
Pool 1 (rankings 7-12)
7. Ola Kåre Risa
8. Boris Konrad
9. Johannes Zhou
10. Yanjaa Altansuh
11. Enhkjin Tumur
12. Johann Randall Abrina
Pool 2 (rankings 13-18)
13. Enkhumnkh Erdenebatkhaan
14. Annalena Fischer
15. Tsogobadrakh Saikhanbayar
16. Anne Reulke
17. Lance Tschirhart
18. Tuuruul Myagmarsuren
Pool 3 (rankings 19-24)
19. Alexander Mullen
20. Marwin Wallonius
21. Marlo Knight
22. Akjol Syeryekkhaan
23. Katie Kermode
24. Johnny Briones
GER: 7 competitors - no more than 2 in each group
MNG: 5 competitors - no more than 2 in each group
SWE: 3 competitors - no more than 1 in each group
UK: 3 competitors - no more than 1 in each group
USA: 3 competitors - no more than 1 in each group
PHL: 2 competitors - no more than 1 in each group
So, I'm now in group F, and who'll join me? Well, from pool 1 I think the name that instils the most terror in me is Boris - he'll beat me in names and words most likely, and everything else quite possibly too. The 'easy' option would probably be Enhkjin, who's in the top group thanks to some super-fast times in images and numbers in the qualifying tournament that he might not be able to replicate in a one-off situation.
I've thought about pool 2 since I did my previous Group of Death predictions and decided that Enkhmunkh is slightly more deathy than Lance is, so he moves to the top of my most-feared list today.
And now that I can't be paired with Katie or Marlo from pool 4, that I think leaves Marwin as the one to most make me tremble.
Revised Group of Death: Me, Boris, Enkhmunkh, Marwin. Revised Group of Life: Me, Enhkjin, Anne, Alex. Fingers crossed!
And then, of course, we have to think about who I'll play in the knockout rounds if I manage to get through the inevitable group of death I'll be drawn in. They're using the knockout phase structure from Euro 2016, apparently, but that doesn't strictly tell me who I'd be up against if I win my group, because that seems to be arranged so that groups A and D are the top two seeds (they're the ones who play runners-up rather than group winners in the quarter-finals), so there'll probably be a bit of re-jigging of the alphabet. But E and F do seem to be fifth and sixth seeds in that structure too, so I guess I'd be playing the runner-up of group E (Christian's group) in the round of 16. After that I play a group winner - it's logical to have 3rd seed against 6th in the quarter-finals, so that would mean... Jonas again. Should I say "yikes" or "aha, my chance for revenge!"?
Tell you what, I won't say anything until I've got through the group stage. It's seriously dangerous to start planning things as if I'm going to win my group, isn't it?