Picture Credit to Rob Brazier Jr
So I made the journey to York Hall in London yesterday for Rev-Pro’s Summer Sizzler show. Before the show was the meet & greet which was £15 to get in so you wouldn’t think for a photograph with one of the wrestlers you’d have to pay would you? But what was worse, even though the promoter had said beforehand this would not happen Shinsuke Nakamura was charging £10 for a photo taken with your own camera/phone. I don’t think this was very good for the fans who paid the £15 already and then were going to buy merchandise. Let’s see how this is addressed by Rev-Pro management.
So now that’s out the way, on with the show. The first match saw the returning Guv’nor Martin Stone & Joel Redman collectively known as England’s Calling, challenge current British tag team champions The Kartel of Sha Samuels & Terry Frazier, to no surprise this started fast, all 4 guys too it to each other mostly outside the ring for the first few minutes, Samuels & Frazier both took exception with comments from the crowd which saw them both try to get and fans a couple of rows in, it was quite funny to be honest. When the dust settled, referee for the night Joel Allen got the back in the ring. All the guys wrestled well as units within their tag teams, I was already a big fan of Samuels and to see Stone & Redman back after their stint in WWE was great. When all said and done, after Stone pinned Frazier following the ‘London Bridge’ England’s Calling emerged as the new British tag team champions.
Next up was an international super heavyweight battle between our own Dave Mastiff taking on ‘The Underboss’ Bad Luck Fale, of course Fale was a replacement for his fellow Bullet Club member Karl Anderson who I’m not going to deny, was really looking forward to see. This match however, whoa, the ring moved quite a bit during the previous match with the 4 guys in but I don’t think I’ve seen a ring shift at any time before like I did for this match. As much as I have respect for both guys, this match didn’t really do it for me, both guys have it their all but it was just missing something for me. I must say, I was surprised Fale defeated Mastiff.
The first half main event was Undisputed British Heavyweight Champion Marty Scurll defending his title against Kevin Steen. Scurll had been off for 9 weeks with a shoulder injury and he’d only had 2 matches in the days leading up to this show. I knew his shoulder would get a real test in this one. The story of the match was Steen often going for the ropes to break various holds by Scurll, this got comical as it got to a point where Steen was just hugging the ropes for jokes. When the action got going it was very good indeed. Steen pulled out all his trademark moves but every time he went for the package pile driver, Scurll eluded him. Likewise, Scurll was constantly going for the chicken wing and did get it on at one point but the end came when after the ref had his back turned Scurll kicked Steen in his Crown Jewels and then pinned him with a small package. Good match, Steen was on form and Scurll is doing a great job as a villain. Looking forward to seeing who his next match is.
The first match of the second half saw an excellent encounter between one half of the GHC Junior Heavyweight tag team championships from NOAH Zack Sabre Jr vs NJPW’s Intercontinental champion Shinsuke Nakamura. This match was just outstanding, as you can guess, plenty of kicks and strikes but overall a terrific match. Sabre Jr was continuously going for his arm bar submission which he did get on a few times but Nakamura escaped via the ropes. In the end it was was the ‘King of Strong Style’ who got the win via pinfall following the Boma Ye knee strike. Both guys got a deserved standing ovation following the match.
Next up was a tag team encounter that was supposed see the Swords of Essex vs the Irish duo of 2 Unlimited however, at the start of the show, Andy Quildan announced that Paul Robinson was not there but Will Ospreay had found a partner, this turned out to be Jake McCluskey and like I said on the preview last week, I was unfamiliar with 2 Unlimited and again, I had not seen McCluskey wrestle before but I must say, he was mightily impressive. The Irish team were also very impressive wrestling a style I’m a big fan of, some of the team work was highly impressive. And it was the boys from the Emerald Isle that got the win in the end, I would think both Rev-Pro and Will Ospreay would want 2 Unlimited to face the Swords of Essex down the line and I as a fan am guessing, along with myself, many of the fans are too.
The next match was the main event pitting Prince Devitt against Adam Cole, the current ROH champion who had the belt with him that day but didn’t come to the ring with it. Devitt as any fan of wrestling at this level will know that for months now in various promotions here in the UK like in his last couple of months in Japan has been painted in the form if characters from comic books etc. and I’m sure you will know by now (and is as pictured above), this time he wasn’t painted up but was decked out as Bane from the last Batman movie.
The start saw two guys dressed as American policemen come out and they were attacked and disposed of by Devitt. The match itself was excellent, my match of the night in fact. Both guys got to execute their trademark moves and in the end it was Devitt who got the win after the Bloody Sunday. At the conclusion of the match I left the building to get back home and as I went out the doors, Marty Scurll & Terry Frazier were lurking which was leading up to them storming the ring because Sha Samuels & Josh Bodom came down to attack Devitt, this led to Bad Luck Fale coming out to even the odds, as a result, a match was made there and then on the spot as Devitt the former Bullet Club member teamed with Fale who of course is still in the Bullet Club to take on a The Revolutionist combination of Samuels & Bodom. Scurll & Frazier the other members of The Revolutionists did run in but Kevin Steen came down to help fend them off the villains and in the impromptu match it was Devitt & Fale who got the win.
Overall it was a very good show, throughout the night they made announcements for the next show, Uprising, at York Hall on October 18th and first they announced on the big screen Rikishi & Too Cool would be there but the big announcement which was one I thought was coming is that right there in York Hall on October 18th will be yet another star of NJPW – Kazuchika OKADA.