As part of his application to become a teacher at Duel Academy, Mr. Ryuga needed to defeat fifty students. Among his arranged opponents was Syrus.
Using an electromagnetic ray in his ring, Ryuga was able to stop Syrus' cards from functioning properly, while his own Duel Disk was equipped with a shield from the ray. Towards the end of the Duel Ryuga attacked Syrus' "Gyroid" with "Cyber Dinosaur". Due to its effect "Gyroid" was not destroyed, but still Ryuga still proceeded to win the Duel.
Afterwards Ryuga took one of Syrus' cards as a prize. Jaden, who had heard rumors that Ryuga was taking students cards had this confirmed when he met Syrus afterwards. Angered, Jaden confronted Ryuga and was arranged to be Ryuga's opponent in his fiftieth Duel.