Sendai Girls’ on 4/8/16 Review

Event: Sendai Girls’
Date:  April 8th, 2016
Location: Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan
Announced Attendance: Unknown

Korakuen Hall for most smaller promotions in Japan is where they go for their big events. So whenever a promotion runs a show at one of the most well known locations in Japan, you know that the promotion is bringing all they have to put on a good show. Sendai Girls’ is no different, as this show is stacked from top to bottom. Besides Satomura and Kong being in the main event, which speaks for itself, we also have two of the top Freelancers in Joshi (Syuri and Shida) on the card, as well as a mini SEAdLINNNG invasion. Here is the full card:

This is going to be fun, if you need more information on a wrestler you can click on their name above to go directly to their profile.

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Hiroyo Matsumoto and Mika Iwata vs. Kaho Kobayashi and Kyoko Kimura

The event begins with a fun tag match with a mixture of young wrestlers and seasoned veterans. I already know this match is clipped so I am curbing my excitement a bit, as on paper it could have been one of the better matches on the card. Matsumoto I write about a lot, she is fantastic, and Iwata has shown a lot of ability since debuting for Sendai Girls’ last year. Kimura, like Matsumoto, is a talented long time wrestler and Kobayashi is one of my favorites at getting beaten up. Unfortunately it is clipped but hopefully they show enough that it will still be fun.

sendai4.8-1Iwata and Kobayashi are the first two in and do some intro-level submissions before both miss dropkicks. Iwata kicks Kobayashi into the corner but Kobayashi fights back with elbows and the pair trade blows. Beautiful dropkick by Kobayashi and she dropkicks Iwata again, running senton by Kobayashi and she hits a standing moonsault. Kobayashi goes for a cover but Matsumoto breaks it up with a German suplex, Kobayashi is double teamed before eating a superkick from Iwata. Kimura comes in and boots people, Kobayashi goes back to Iwata but Iwata reverses the Fisherman Suplex attempt. Bodyscissors into a roll-up by Iwata, but Kobayashi delivers a step-up enzuigiri. Kobayashi goes up top and hits the missile dropkick, Fisherman Suplex Hold by Kobayashi and she gets the three count! Matsumoto and Iwata win!

As I mentioned at the top, this match was clipped all to hell, with only about a third of it shown. I’d have loved to seen it all but this is what happens with any event shown on SamuraiTV. On the plus side, what they showed was great, as Kobayashi is so good and Iwata doesn’t wrestle like a rookie. Matsumoto and Kimura basically only got one spot apiece in what was shown, but if something had to be clipped I am glad they let us watch the young wrestlers. Too cut up to recommend but what they showed is worth watching.

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Alex Lee vs. Eiger

This is likely the comedy relief of the evening. Alex Lee wrestles everywhere as she is a very well-traveled Freelancer, while Eiger is a ghost. Or a zombie ghost. One or the other, either way she scares people and is super creepy.sendai4.8-2

To prove my point, this one begins in progress as Eiger spits dust (I guess) into Lee’s face. Lee rolls out of the ring but Eiger goes after her and walks around looking creepy while she scares the audience. This goes on for a bit, and is pretty funny, but we have to get back to the ring at some point as Lee chains up Eiger and dropkicks her in the head. Cover, but it is broken up by another wrestler (95% sure it is Sakura Hirota, but wrestlers out of their normal wrestling attire look different). She loosens Eiger’s chains, high kicks by Lee to Eiger but Eiger fires back with a lariat. Another high kick by Lee and she hits the Chokebomb for the three count! Alex Lee wins.

Just comedy filler, but I do think that Eiger is funny in short bursts. Sometimes her matches are 15 minutes, which is ridiculous, but five minutes (less than that clipped) is perfectly acceptable. I can’t hate on it since it made me laugh several times, not bad for undercard comedy.

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Cassandra Miyagi vs. Yoshiko

Now we are starting to get into the meat of the evening. Yoshiko returned to wrestling in January, joining SEAdLINNNG, after she resigned from Stardom following the incident in February 2015 with Act Yasukawa. Meiko Satomura didn’t like Yoshiko returning (clearly in storyline only since now they are working together), which has led to Yoshiko and her mentor Takahashi coming to Sendai Girls’ to take on Satomura’s top two rookies. Miyagi goes first, she is more character than in-ring ability at this stage of her career but can brawl if nothing else, which is Yoshiko’s preferred wrestling style as well. I have no idea what to expect here as there is no way to know if they will have any chemistry, let’s find out.

After starting politely with a tie-up, Miyagi snapmares Yoshiko to the mat and kicks her a few times in the head. sendai4.8-3Yoshiko gets back up and shoulderblocks Miyagi, but Miyagi pulls Yoshiko down by her hair. Lariat by Yoshiko in the corner and she hits bootscrapes followed by a running boot to the face. Elbows by Yoshiko and she slides out to the apron, but Miyagi applies a sleeper over the top rope. Miyagi knocks Yoshiko to the floor and rams her head repeatedly into the apron, they brawl up into the bleachers with Miyagi staying in control. Yoshiko comes back as she rams Miyagi’s head into the ring post, they return to the ring and Yoshiko hits a scoop slam. Miyagi avoids her next attack and hits a series of dropkicks, she gets on the second turnbuckle and delivers a missile dropkick for two. Miyagi tries to pick up Yoshiko but is knocked back, knees by Yoshiko and she hits a lariat off the second turnbuckle. Miyagi and Yoshiko trade elbows, Miyagi ducks a lariat and slams Yoshiko to the mat for another two count. Backdrop suplex by Miyagi, she goes all the way up top but Yoshiko joins her and gets Miyagi on her shoulders. Yoshiko drops Miyagi to the mat, she quickly follows with a diving senton and she picks up the three count! Yoshiko is your winner.

A pretty basic match with the expected result. Miyagi is more style than substance, and I do like her character a lot but her actual wrestling is pretty pedestrian at this stage of her career. Yoshiko looked fine and hit her moves well, but there were a few hiccups where it looked like they weren’t quite on the same page. Of course this match was shown in full but will likely be the worst match on the card in terms of in-ring action (not counting the comedy match), I wouldn’t call it bad but certainly nothing memorable. But it accomplished its goal of giving Yoshiko a win over a Sendai Girls’ wrestler, which will help continue the Yoshiko vs. Satomura storyline.

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Chihiro Hashimoto vs. Nanae Takahashi

Sometimes as a rookie, they say the best way to learn is to face off against long time and well respected veterans. Hashimoto is testing that theory, as she wrestles someone with twenty years experience and a dozen championship reigns under her belt. This is a combination promotion battle match and veteran/rookie match, but really like the one we just  saw, it is a way to get two SEAdLINNNG wrestlers a win over a Sendai Girls’ wrestler without anyone losing face. These two I think match up well though, as Hashimoto is better than Miyagi and Takahashi is better than Yoshiko, so I am expecting them to put on an entertaining match.

sendai4.8-4They start fast, as Hashimoto picks up Takahashi and slams her to the mat. Fireman’s carry takeover by Hashimoto and they jockey for position, Takahashi gets top position but she releases Hashimoto and they return to their feet. Takahashi starts working on Hashimoto’s arm as the match stays on the ground, Takahashi elbows Hashimoto into the corner and sneaks in a schoolboy for a two count. Back to the mat they go as Takahashi stretches Hashimoto, back up they trade elbows, an exchange that Takahashi gets the better of. Knees by Takahashi and she hits a vertical suplex, she goes off the ropes but Hashimoto hits a hip attack. Running hip strike by Hashimoto, she repeatedly tries to knock down Takahashi but Takahashi stays up. Takahashi finally is able to send Hashimoto to the mat with a shoulderblock, missile dropkick by Takahashi and she covers Hashimoto for two. Hashimoto back bodydrops out of a powerbomb setup, judo throw by Hashimoto and she goes for a cross armbreaker, but Takahashi gets into the ropes. Hashimoto rams Takahashi into the corner but Takahashi switches positions with her and hits short range lariats. Takahashi puts Hashimoto on the top turnbuckle and hits a superplex, both wrestlers go off the ropes and Hashimoto hits a spear. Waterwheel Drop by Hashimoto, but Takahashi kicks out of the cover. Rolling Fireman’s Carry Slam by Hashimoto, she picks up Takahashi but Takahashi gets away and drops her onto her knee. Sliding kick by Takahashi, she waits for Hashimoto gets up and levels her with a lariat for the three count! Takahashi wins the match.

This was a good match, it just seemed to end just as it was getting going. The first half of the match kept things simple, which is fine, except that once it kicked into gear it did not last long until Takahashi picked up the win. That isn’t to say that Takahashi didn’t give Hashimoto a lot, as she did, and both wrestlers came out of it looking good. From her amateur wrestling background, Hashimoto has a solid base and they were on the same page throughout which really speaks to Takahashi’s abilities as a veteran. Overall a fun match, it just took a bit too long to really get to the action.  Mildly Recommended

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DASH Chisako and KAORU vs. Hikaru Shida and Syuri

After Sendai Sachiko retired in January, Chisako needed a new tag team partner, and she seems to have found one (at least temporarily) in veteran Freelancer KAORU. Shida and Syuri teamed a few times in April, I have no idea if they are just making a Freelancer Dream Team or plan to make it a regular thing but they are two of my favorites in Japan so I am not complaining. Nothing is really at stake here aside from pride, and any match with KAORU in it is bound to get at least a little bit wild.

Chisako is sporting a new look as she begins with Shida, and they immediately start trading elbows. Dropkick by Chisako but Shida picks her up and drops her with a backbreaker. Shida tags Syuri, Syuri comes in with a big club and she hits Chisako with it. Chisako kicks her back and tags KAORU, Shida hits her with the club also until Chisako comes in for the save. KAORU gets a piece of table while Shida gets her kendo stick, Shida wins the weapon battle but KAORU dropkicks her in the knee. KAORU bops Shida a few times with the table piece, suplex by KAORU and she covers Shida for two. KAORU tries to drop the table on Shida but she moves, Shida goes for a hip attack but KAORU hits her in the butt with the table. Shida finally manages to hit a hip attack and tags Syuri, kicks by Syuri and she hits a jumping knee in the corner before hitting a suplex. Chisako comes in to help, brainbuster by KAORU and she then suplexes Chisako onto Syuri. Chisako goes up top and hits a missile dropkick followed by a dropkick in the corner for a two count. Chisako gets the piece of table, Syuri gets it from her but Chisako dropkicks the table into Syuri’s face. Syuri and Chisako trade elbows, backstabber by Syuri and she hits a PK for two. Syuri tags Shida, and Shida hits Chisako with her kendo stick. Shida slams Chisako to the mat, then Syuri comes in as they both try to kick Chisako but Chisako moves.

sendai4.8-5KAORU comes in and boots Shida, running elbow by Chisako and she hits a catapult footstomp. Suplex hold by Chisako, but Syuri breaks up the cover. Chisako goes up top but Shida joins her, she goes for a suplex but Chisako pulls her out of the ring. All hell breaks loose as Syuri chases KAORU around the crowd with her new club, a table is set up at ringside by someone and KAORU puts Shida on the table. Chisako goes up to the top turnbuckle and nails the diving footstomp onto Shida, but the table doesn’t break. That looked incredibly painful. They eventually get back in the ring and bring a ladder with them, and Syuri throws Chisako into the ladder. Syuri gets her club and breaks the pieces of table with it, Shida grabs the ladder and rams both KAORU and Chisako. Suplex by Shida to Chisako and she hits the Three Count for two. Shida hits a superplex on Chisako onto a steel chair, but KAORU breaks up the pin. Shida sets up the ladder and climbs it with a kendo stick in her hand, but KAORU tips it over. KAORU puts the ladder around her neck and does the Terry Funk spot, she puts the ladder back down and she lays it across both Shida and Syuri. Chisako goes up top and hits a footstomp onto the ladder, double cover but Shida and Syuri both kick out. Chisako goes up the ladder but Shida throws the kendo stick at her and hits a Falcon Arrow for two. Shida and Chisako both climb the ladder, and Chisako hits Shida with a piece of table which sends her down to the mat. KAORU goes up top and hits a perfect Valkyrie Splash, Chisako then hits the Hormone Splash off the top of the ladder for the three count! Chisako and KAORU win the match.

Not at all what I was expecting, which isn’t a bad thing, they just caught me off guard with the amount of weapon usage. KAORU does always use her table piece and Shida always has her kendo stick, but the giant club that Syuri had and the ladder were unexpected. So while I went in expecting a normal tag match instead I got a spotfest weapons match, which worked since it was different than all the other matches on the card. Some of the spots were brutal, such as the footstomp to the floor that did not break the table, and all four looked really good. A bit clipped and a bit crazy, but a really fun match.  Recommended

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(c) Meiko Satomura vs. Aja Kong

This match is for the Sendai Girls’ World Championship. This is a pretty epic match, as Satomura’s feud with Aja Kong goes a long way back. Kong and Satomura have been wrestling each other since 1997, when both were a member of GAEA, and they had a monster title match in 1999 that drew over 6,000 fans. After GAEA closed shop they went their separate ways, although Kong has come into Sendai Girls’ from time to time over the years to continue their rivalry. This is their first singles match since 2012, with Kong again coming into Sendai Girls’ but this time going after the new Sendai Girls’ World Championship. Few wrestlers hit harder than Kong, but Satomura can throw some bombs too and I fully expect this to be a heated and brutal match between these two long time veterans and rivals.

Satomura and Kong know each other so well that the match starts slow as both wrestlers keep countering their opponent’s moves. Satomura hits the first punishing moves of the match as she hits an uppercut followed by a kick to the head, she applies a sleeper but Kong gets out of it and knocks Satomura into the corner. Kick to the stomach by Kong and she drops Satomura with a backdrop suplex, Satomura gets up quickly but she eats another one for her trouble. A third head-dropping backdrop suplex by Kong, Satomura tries to slide away to apply a sleeper but Kong falls back and crushes her. Kong climbs up top but Satomura knocks her off, she goes for a frog splash but Kong gets her feet up and just catapults Satomura halfway across the ring in a brutal looking spot. Satomura is understandably wounded as she rolls out of the ring, but Kong goes after her and hits Satomura with a chair. Kong puts Satomura against the post and goes for a lariat, but Satomura moves and Kong lariats the post. Back in, they trade slaps, punches, and kicks until Satomura falls to the mat.

sendai4.8-6Irish whip by Kong but Satomura hits a heel kick, kick by Satomura but Kong levels her with a backfist. Kong gets her paint can and she hits a brainbuster right onto it, sending Satomura back out of the ring again. Kong rolls out too, she gets one of the big metal railing panels and hits Satomura in the head with it before taking her up into the bleachers. Lariat by Kong up in the stands, she brings Satomura back to ringside and hits a brainbuster onto the metal panel. Back in the ring, Kong goes for the diving elbow drop but Satomura catches her arm and goes for the cross armbreaker. Kong gets to the ropes but Satomura hits the cartwheel into a knee drop, she goes for the Pele Kick but Kong blocks it and kicks Satomura in the face. Uraken by Kong but Satomura fires back with a Pele Kick and both wrestlers are out. Satomura picks up Kong and hits a Death Valley Bomb, but Kong immediately retorts with a brainbuster. They slowly get up, Uraken by Kong but Satomura hits a Death Valley Bomb. Scorpion Rising (!!!) by Satomura, but Kong barely kicks out of the cover. They slowly get up, Death Valley Bomb by Kong and she decks Satomura with a backfist, but the cover only gets two. Kong puts Satomura on the top turnbuckle and joins her, but Satomura knocks her off and hits a heel drop. Scorpion Rising by Satomura, and she picks up the three count! Meiko Satomura is still the Sendai Girls’ World Champion!

I think we all, myself included, use the phrase ‘this match was a war!’ too much, but if that phrase ever fit a match it is this one. This was just a hard hitting and brutal match, there were so many cringe-worthy moves as neither were holding back. The suplexes were killer, the strikes were on point, and they kept the pace up even more than I was expecting. Kong’s way of blocking the frog splash took the breath out of me and I wasn’t even in the same continent, and how Satomura was still moving at the end of this I have no idea. I loved Satomura reaching into her bag of tricks and winning with the Scorpion Rising, since the Death Valley Bomb was clearly not working at all. A must see match if you are into wrestlers trying to kill each other, a great main event and more than worthy of being a championship match. One of the most entertaining matches I have seen in 2016.  Highly Recommended