It is not often I want to be up and about at 7am on a Sunday in February but it is not often that my local promotion TCW are running a show out of town in Newcastle, one of my absolute favourite Cities. So to Newcastle it was getting on an 8:30 train from Leeds Station, “But why is this dickhead leaving at 8:30am to a show that starts at 17:30?” I hear you ask. Well a good friend of mine Paul @pblurton is a big beer nerd like me so we decided to make a day of it and take in some of the fantastic pubs and bars of Newcastle before the wrestling. So I do apologise but the first section of this review will be about the pubs, bars and Beers of Newcastle.no
We arrived ON TIME (using Trains!!) and it was slightly too early to go to a pub as it was 10:20 so we walked down to the riverside and there was a really interesting street food market on alongside and under the Tyne bridge. The sun was shining and Newcastle is so photogenic that this took us to nearly 11am and we got to the Free Trade Inn.
There are not many pubs better in the UK than Free Trade inn and not many beer garden views. The beer range is also fantastic. Once we got in after actually waiting at the front door as we were 3 or 4 minutes early I ordered a half of Sleepwalker from Credence Brewery (Northumberland). This was a 6.4% coffee porter and was really easy drinking. As it was a coffee porter it is a breakfast beer, right?
A 6 minute walk from the Free Trade is Tynebank Brewery and tap room. I did not know Tynebank had a tap room and this was a great find. Spacious, airy, light and you can sit and watch the team brewing. We kept it local and had a pint of Tynebank Monument, a 4.1% bitter although I felt it was more of a pale ale but quaffable nonetheless.
We found Tynebank Brewery using the map on Untappd (andrewcampbell1984) and we did the same for the next place we found which was Brinkburn St Brewery. This was housed in what I imagine was some sort of old ship factory (I will do some more research on this) What a cracking find. Again, we had one of their own beers and there was a choice of 8 cask ales and 12 keg. I divulged in a half of Brinkburn St Ford Street IPA on keg at 4.7%. This was fresh and lots of flavour whilst not being massively hoppy. Good stuff.
The next pub we ventured to was in Byker GROVE! nah just Byker. I don’t know where the Grove is or even if it exists. The Cumberland Arms is a Northern Alchemy pub where they used to brew from a shipping container at the back of the pub, It is an old school pub with a great range of beer. The view from the beer garden is down towards the river and to the right a viaduct above. Again i kept it local and had a Northern Alchemy Passionfruit and Pineapple sour. 3.1% and super tasty. Loads of passionfruit and clearly loads of passion put into these beers. This trip was turning into a real Beer treat.
The next pub was the Ship Inn. This was another really nice pub in a fantastic setting. It was below one of the awesome viaducts and to the right was an urban farm! I cant actually remember what I had in this pub but it was a local brewery and a pretty decent beer. We left the Ship Inn and ventured all of 15 metres across the road to the Cluny (clooney) From the outside this had the feel of a bar and maybe even a student bar. Would we have our first miss with the Beer? FUCK NO. In Here I had my first non-local beer. a 6.4% Saison style beer called Not Now, Cato! from Wild Beer down in Somerset. Stonking.
There were a couple of other joints we could have tried around this area and with more time I defInitely would have stayed around Ouseburn. But with time running out we started to venture back towards the city centre. Paul stopped to get some food at the street food market and got 2 bangers in a bun for £3 (in Leeds they would have charged about £8) These bangers were locally produced and each was the size of a sausage from the German market. They also sold a sausage on a stick for £1.50.
When Paul had finished stuffing his face we went to the Bridge Tavern. Man I love this pub. Squeezed underneath a viaduct and yet still has an outside area this pub also has its own mini brewhouse inside with 2 or 3 of the beers on the bar travelling about 10 metres to be served.
Again we went with the local beer and had half a Tavernale Shadow of the past. a 4.4% red ale and it was bloody nice and in a great surrounding. Another short walk to the Crown Posada was next and i’m not local to Newcastle but I think of the Posada as similar to Whitelocks in Leeds. If you are a local beer drinker you like it and if you travel to that city you will be told to go there. In here I drank a Hadrian Border Brewery Black Gate Bitter. An easy drinking 4% bitter but again more in line with a pale ale. Nice enough.
Bell time was approaching and we had a short walk to the venue but we certainly had time to stop in the Box Social. A brewery bar in one of the railway arches just behind Newcastle Station. Love this place and love the beer. I had a Box Social I am Hollywood, a 4.5% blood orange sour. This was tasty and had incredible body. Probably my beer of the day. We were about to leave and in walked Damien Stone a friend and fellow graps fan so we had another one before heading to the show (why not ay?) again I stayed local and had a Box Social Sticky Beak, a 4.2% pale ale with lots of flavour and tasting really fresh.
This was our last beer before the show and I noticed that there are an incredible amount of great drinking holes in Newcastle, many we didn’t have time to get to. There is also a healthy amount of local breweries and every pub or bar we went into had local representation. Newcastle is a great city and has to be in the conversation of the best Beer city in the UK.
So the next stop was Digital for TCW. Damien led the way as a native of Newcastle and we gladly followed. This was the first Tidal show since December and it had felt like a long time ago and the venue, the lighting and the beer was different but the wrestling was definitely Tidal.
We took our spot to the left of the ring in front of the bar and said Hello to Jan @rejoicerebuild who had made the trip over from Lancaster and it was great to see some familiar faces who had made the trip up.
So Tidal Championship Wrestling,When the Boot goes in, Sunday 10th 2019, Digital, Newcastle, 5:30 bell. Not going to dwell on this much but at the beginning of the show Sugar Dunkerton came out and explained that Rampage was not fit to wrestle. This was a stinger but after being there for his match the night before at Defiant it was not a surprise.
Match 1 Sheikh El Sham(bles) DF ShreddyBrek via Pinfall – 2 big dudes with great charisma, 1 obvious face and 1 obvious heel. This was a good fun opener and helped with Shreddybrek being well known around these parts. The guy is jacked, but so is the Sheikh even if he does wear shit pants (a common thread of abuse thrown at him) but the Shiekh is very good at naturally reacting to the crowd. Whether its a whole room chant or one guy going at him about his shit shorts. He will have a comeback. Most importantly both of these are very good wrestlers and I believe Sheikh El Sham can be a massive star. The match finished when Sheikh used dastardly deeds to rake the eyes of Shreddybrek and grabbing the rope for the pin. To be fair to Cowboy John(fair!!!) he could not see this one.
Nice opener and we will definitely see Sheikh back and have a feeling we may see Shreddy sometime as well.
One issue throughout the show was the low hanging stuff over the ring. There were metal boxes for cables and what looked like a vent and it was quickly realised it may be a problem as both Sheikh and Shreddy could touch this stuff by just reaching up.
At this point in the show I believe I was drinking a Newcastle Brown Ale.
Match 2 Sean Only DF Grodd via DQ
My rendition of “what if Grodd was one of us” got a slight laugh from the people around me so my night was made. As a match this was good stuff. Hard hitting and really the best I have seen Grodd in TCW. Only with some great striking against the bigger man and looked to have Grodd for the beating until the other members of Crown of thorns entered and beat down Only who picked up a DQ win after the ref called for the bell.
As a tidal regular I wonder where this leaves Only, I cant imagine he wont want retribution for this and Grodd’s last 2 singles matches have been lost via countout and DQ.
To the crowd at their first Tidal show this was lost on them a bit as they didn’t have much knowledge, if any, of the Crown of Thorns stable. After the beatdown all 4 members were in and around the ring and the ring announcer told them all to leave apart from Rhio as her match was next and that was against Newcastle’s own Little Miss Roxxy and she got a very nice ovation. Roxxy really is gaining traction with companies like Pro Wrestling Eve and a soon to have world title match against Kay Lee Ray at ICW and the crowd were right behind her.
This match was Women’s champion vs Open champion and before the show in the locker room they had a coin toss to see which title would be defended. Roxxy won the toss which meant the match was for Rhio’s Womens Title.
Match 3 Rhio DF Little Miss Roxxy to retain the TCW Women’s Championship
The main thing that stuck out in this match was Roxxy’s kicks coming in from all angles and looking and sounding bloody vicious. It’s hard to defend against when you don’t know where the next kick is coming from. This was again a nice wrestling match until the intereference from Grodd. Grood came out and stood on the ring apron and Roxxy got distracted and hit Grodd in the chest a few times to no avail. Rhio took advantage and pinned Roxxy to retain the title. At least someone in the Crown of Thorns wins.
Match 4 – The Lion Kings (Nsereko and Man Like Dereiss) DF Crown of thorns (BA Rose and Will Kroos) to retain the TCW tag team championship
The freebird rule was in effect in this match with Man Like Dereiss replacing the sadly injured Sebb Strife (get well soon Sebb and buy their merch people) I felt a title change coming.
This match was a lot of fun and many of you may have seen the spot on Twitter or Facebook where Nsereko pushes a Bumper Car? with Deriess driving straight through the onrushing BA Rose. This was a really well worked spot but I don’t think enough praise has been given to BA Rose for the way he took the bump. He looked like he had been hit by an 18 wheeler. Awesome stuff. Another crazy spot was BA Rose with a moonsault from the top rope to the outside landing on everyone. I’m not sure he got the full rotation as, as previously mentioned, the amount of guff hanging from the ceiling.
The match finished when BA ROSE pulled a kettle from under the ring (i’m assuming it was his own kettle?) the kettle was full of thumbtacks and BA poured them on the mat. He tried to get Nsereko into his double underhook piledriver but Nsereko fought back with punches and BA just holding his balance to avoid falling into the thumbtacks. But seconds later Nsereko with a spinebuster on BA right onto the tacks and the pin.
This match was a lot of fun with some really hard hitting stuff, clever spots and 4 really talented guys. BA Rose in underappreciated and the things he will put himself through for the fans is immense. He also has probably the best finisher around at the moment. Kroos is Kroos and is going to have a great year. Still see him in title picture come end of year.
The Lion Kings are such a fantastic tag team and Dereiss, with his charisma and athleticism is a really good fit as the third member replacing Sebb, I just hope we get the Joe Nelson vs Dereiss match we are promised.
Now I had had a few beers at this point but I think this was where the interval was. But I may be wrong so please don’t shoot me.
Also, an interval, what a novel idea DEFIANT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Match 5 Crashboat (pop punk kid and Jack Bandicoot) DF The Breakfast Club (Joe Nelson and Natalie Sykes)
Pop punk kid is young, Jack Bandicoot is young, Joe Nelson and Natalie Sykes are so young and they are all really good at wrestling. Natalie Sykes gets better every match and really held her own here, Joe Nelson has had his hair cut and looks younger than before and I am so glad that Crashboat got to wrestle here as the more they get around to different areas and get noticed the better.
This was a lot of fun with essentially 4 face wrestlers who clearly get along and just had a really good exhibition match.
The only thing I didn’t like was the cover version of Don’t you forget about me the Breakfast Club used. Man it was shit.
Match 6 Joseph fucking Conners DF Boris Koslov via pinfall – Firstly, what a match this was. Great babyface fire from Boris and dickish heel heat from Conners and some absolutely great technical wrestling. Boris gets over with the fans, he has a great persona, great charisma but I think some people have viewed him as a character and nothing more. I call bullshit, this guy can wrestle and I hope to see more of him in Tidal and other places.
Now Conners won this match but what a prick . The fans were having a bit of back and forth nothing untoward or rude and Joseph decided to throw Boris’ Vodka all over me and told me he wants to meet my mum to tell her “she should of had an abortion” or words to those affect. So although the match was very good and although Conners got the win it was clear that Boris got the moral victory.
You’re shit Conners
Match 7 Sugar Dunkerton DF Brady Phillips and HT Drake to retain the TCW world championship. With Rampage out there was a reshuffle of the main event and for the 2nd time in 2 nights i witnessed HT Drake challenge for a title in a match he wasn’t originally in. This was the better of the 2. It was originally started as 1 v 1 before Brady Phillips came out and inserted himself into the match. It became an elimination match so the first pin did not get you the title.
Brady was the fall guy at the beginning being thrown out of the ring a few times. The Newcastle crowd didn’t seem too enamoured with Brady’s tartan trousers but I don’t believe they have witnessed the brilliance of Brady fully. With this being a rearranged match there was never any fear of Dunkerton losing to these 2 and that was the case. Brady was the first eliminated much to the pleasure of most of the crowd but before he was pinned he did help Sugar and HT get rid of the invading Crown of Thorns who again tried to interfere but were wiped out by successive topes.
It became one on one and Dunkerton picked up the win in a solid match. After the bell Dunkerton talked to Drake about how they had done this 4 or 5 times and they will do it again.
And that was it. It was a really good Tidal show and laid the foundations for the rest of the year. The crowd was small and took their time to get into it but the crowd got better as the show went on and I heard a lot of positive feedback so if they tell their friends or bring a friend then that crowd will improve and I would certainly make the trip again. Saying that…………………I cant wait to get back to the temple.
Thanks for reading.
Andrew Campbell @WrestleANDrink