Sendai Girls’ on 1/9/17 Review

Event: Sendai Girls’
Date: January 9th, 2017
Location: Shinjuku FACE in Tokyo, Japan
Announced Attendance: 508

In my attempt in 2017 to stay as ‘current’ as I can with Joshi, it is time for Sendai Girls’! I’d have watched this event anyway because it is chock-full of things I enjoy. My favorite Freelancers all have matches (Shida, Syuri, Konami, and Matsumoto) which is a big plus, and on top of that we have Kyoko Kimura’s last match in Sendai Girls’ and Hashimoto defending her title against Aja Kong! Big show, and it will be shown in full since it aired on Nico Nico. Here is the full card:

Click on the names above to go to the wrestler’s profile on Joshi City if you want to know more about them. This is a very early contender for potential Show of The Year, let’s see how it plays out.

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Mika Shirahime and Syuri vs. Mio Momono and Konami

This is an interesting mixture of wrestlers. Mika debuted in 2015 for Sendai Girls’ (the same time as Chihiro), and while she is a good wrestler she is taking a much slower climb up the card as she still mostly wrestles in the opener. She is teaming with Syuri, who is a badass MMA fighter and holder of two tag team championships. On the other side, Mio is a rookie from Marvelous while Konami is in her second year and is the only wrestler personally trained by Kana. So she has a lot of pressure to do well but so far has shown a lot of skill, she may develop into one of the best Joshi wrestlers if she continues her current trajectory.

Konami and Mika start the match, knees by Mika and she takes Konami to the mat. Konami quickly applies a headscissors as they jockey for position, Mika drives Konami in the corner before hitting a suplex. Mika goes off the ropes but Konami kicks her in the chest and tags in Mio. Mio throws down Mika by the hair before dropkicking her, but Mika quickly turns the tide and elbows Mio in the corner. Dropkick by Mika but Mio fights back and they trade elbows. Mika stags in Syuri, Syuri takes Mio to the mat and goes for a cross armbreaker but Mio gets into the ropes just as she locks it on to get the break. Syuri stomps down Mio and hits a running knee in the corner, cover by Syuri but it gets two. Syuri picks up Mio and slams her, cross armbreaker attempt by Syuri but Mio rolls over. Syuri applies a seated armbar instead but Mio gets into the ropes, Syuri picks up Mio and makes the tag to Mika. Mio and Mika trade elbows, quick roll-up by Mio and she makes the tag to Konami. Kicks to the chest by Konami but Mika blocks the fisherman suplex, Syuri runs in to help but Konami fights them both off and dropkicks them in the corner. Konami tries to suplex Mika but Mika blocks it and rolls her up for two.

sendai1-9-1Dropkick by Mika, and she tags in Syuri. Syuri knees Konami into the corner and hits a jumping knee followed by a butterfly suplex for a two count cover. Konami elbows Syuri and they trade shots, kicks by Konami but Syuri connects with the running knee and kicks Konami hard in the back. Syuri picks up Konami but Konami quickly applies a kneelock, which Mio breaks up. Head kick by Konami and she hits the fisherman suplex hold on Syuri for a two count. Konami tags in Mio, running crossbodies by Mio to Syuri and she covers her for two. Mio goes up top but Syuri recovers and tosses her off. Mio ducks the PK attempt and applies the Figure Four Leglock, but Syuri gets to the ropes to force a break. Mio goes off the ropes but Syuri kicks her in the chest and tags in Mika. Kicks by Mika, she goes off the ropes but Mio catches her with a dropkick. Another dropkick by Mio and she hits a few more, Mio picks up Mika but Mika elbows her and they trade shots. Mika wins the battle and hits a snap vertical suplex, Mika slams Mio in front of the corner and goes up top, but Konami runs over and kicks her from the apron. Mio dropkicks Mika, Konami runs in and hits a release German suplex. Diving crossbody by Mio, but Syuri breaks up the cover. Mio goes off the ropes and goes for the Yoshi Tonic, but Mika shrugs her off. Konami tries to kick Mika in the head but hits Mio by accident, roll-up by Mika but Konami breaks up the cover. Syuri connects with a head kick to Mio, roundhouse kick by Mika and she picks up the three count! Mika Shirahime and Syuri are your winners.

The only thing holding this match back was Mio Momono. Which I don’t really blame her for, she is an 18 year old that debuted less than a year ago, but she was the least smooth of the bunch and a few of her sections looked a bit cringe-y. Everyone else was great though, I enjoyed the Konami vs. Syuri parts since Kana had such a long feud with Syuri and this felt like an extension of that. Mika’s kicks are great, hopefully she gets to climb up the card soon, she is too good to toil away in opening matches. A fun match but with a clear weak link that brought things down a bit.  Mildly Recommended

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Cassandra Miyagi vs. Hikaru Shida

The fun continues, with another young Sendai Girls’ wrestler taking on a top Freelancer. Cassandra Miyagi is a little over two years into her career but didn’t turn crazy until last year, she is the #2 ranked young wrestler in Sendai Girls’ as her unorthodox style is popular with fans. Hikaru Shida has two tag team championships, including one in Sendai Girls’, and is always hard to beat. This will be a good test for Cassandra Miyagi, to see how she does against a far more experienced veteran.

Miyagi headbangs as the match starts but Shida kicks her, they trade holds until Shida applies a grounded necklock. Miyagi gets out of it but Shida nails her in the head with a hip attack. Another hip attack by Shida and she hits a third, Shida picks up Miyagi and attacks her in the corner but Miyagi kicks her when she goes up top. Miyagi snaps Shida’s neck on the top rope but Shida avoids the slingshot legdrop and pulls Miyagi out to the apron. She goes for the running kneelift but Miyagi avoids it and hits a cannonball off the apron. Miyagi attacks Shida around the ring and into the crowd, she gets some water and spits it into Shida’s face. Shida doesn’t like that and elbows her repeatedly in the head, they make their way back into the ring, where Miyagi maintains control. Miyagi swats away the hip attack and sets up Shida in the ropes, chops to the butt by Miyagi and she dropkicks Shida in the back. Body avalanche by Miyagi and she hits a face crusher, cover by Miyagi but it gets a two. Miyagi goes up top but Shida avoids the missile dropkick and knees Miyagi in the back of the head with the Three Count.

sendai1-9-2Vertical suplex by Shida and she puts Miyagi in a crab hold, she releases it after a moment and delivers the fireman’s carry backbreaker for a two count. Shida gets her kendo stuck but Miyagi avoids the blow and knocks it away from her, enzuigiri by Shida but Miyagi gets the kendo stick and hits her in the stomach with it. Backdrop suplex by Miyagi, and she covers Shida for two. Samoan Driver by Miyagi, but again her cover gets a two count. Miyagi picks up Shida and goes for a piledriver, but Shida back bodydrops out of it. Back up they trade elbows, eye poke by Miyagi and she applies an inside cradle for two. Shida pushes Miyagi away and hits a jumping knee, Three Count by Shida but it gets a two count. Shida goes for the Falcon Arrow but Miyagi blocks it and rolls her up for two. A schoolboy by Miyagi also gets a two, she grabs Shida’s kendo stick but Shida takes it form her and hits Miyagi in the head. Falcon Arrow by Shida, she goes off the ropes and nails the Three Count for the three count! Hikaru Shida wins!

I really enjoyed this match, it was a lot of fun. Miyagi is slowly growing as a wrestler but she has the character down pat, her mannerisms and randomness are very amusing. Shida is great and has some of the best knees and backbreakers in the business, and I like that Miyagi had a full competitive match with Shida. Miyagi isn’t quite at the level to beat someone like Shida but is close, and if her wrestling gets on the same level as her personality she will be a force to be reckoned with. The right combination of playful and hard hitting, solid match all the way around.  Recommended

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Hiroyo Matsumoto and Eiger vs. Meiko Satomura and Alex Lee

Things are only getting weirder now. Hiroyo Matsumoto is the champion over in OZ Academy and one of the most successful Freelancers in Japan. Eiger is… whatever that girl from The Ring is, some kind of ghost zombie (I don’t watch scary movies). On the other side, Meiko Satomura is the Leader of Sendai Girls’ and one of the top Joshi wrestlers in the world, while Alex Lee is a gaijin that wrestles in a variety of promotions. When Eiger is in a match anything is possible, I am not sure what to expect here.

Eiger insists on starting the match for her team against Satomura, but Satomura promptly kicks her in the head for a two count. Satomura goes for a lariat but Eiger rolls underneath it and does Eiger things. Satomura tags in Lee but Lee doesn’t want to wrestle Eiger and takes Satomura back in. Eiger crawls to her corner and tags in Matsumoto, they struggle for position until Matsumoto throws Satomura to the mat. Shoulderblock by Matsumoto and she puts Satomura in a stretch hold, but Satomura gets out of it and they trade holds. Satomura tags in Lee, kicks to the back by Lee and she hits a pair of running footstomps for a two count. Vertical suplex by Matsumoto and she tags in Eiger, headbutt by Eiger but Lee avoids the falling headbutt. Kicks to the chest by Lee and she dropkicks Eiger before tagging in Satomura. Lee and Satomura take turns kicking Eiger, Eiger gets Lee’s back and Matsumoto runs in to help, but Eiger gets her back as well. Matsumoto finally realizes that Eiger is behind her and pops her in the head, double face crusher by Lee but Eiger hits a DDT on Satomura. Eiger goes up top but Matsumoto tags herself in, she elbows Satomura and hits a body avalanche against the ropes. Matsumoto and Satomura trade elbows until Eiger grabs Satomura from the apron.

sendai1-9-3Satomura gets away from her and hits a heel kick on Matsumoto, she goes for the cartwheel kneedrop but Matsumoto moves out of the way and hits a backdrop suplex. Matsumoto goes for a Reverse Splash but Satomura gets her knees up, back elbow by Matsumoto and she covers Satomura for two. Satomura kicks Matsumoto in the stomach and then in the head, cover by Satomura but it gets a two count. Cartwheel kneedrop by Satomura, and she makes the tag to Lee. Lee kicks Matsumoto in the chest and hits a jumping knee followed by a double underhook suplex for two. Lee goes for a kick but Matsumoto ducks it, she then goes for a powerbomb but Lee back bodydrops out of it and kicks Matsumoto in the head. Lee goes up top and delivers a diving footstomp, cover by Lee but it gets two. Satomura comes in but Matsumoto suplexes both of them, sliding lariat by Matsumoto to Lee and she covers Lee for two. Matsumoto hits the reverse double kneedrop, but Satomura breaks up the cover. Matsumoto grabs Lee but Satomura kicks her, high kick by Lee to Matsumoto and Eiger spits dust into Satomura’s face. Satomura then high kicks Lee by accident, lariat by Matsumoto to Lee and she gets the three count! Hiroyo Matsumoto and Eiger win the match.

I’m not too sure what to think of this match. Lee is an average wrestler while Eiger is mostly comedy, while Matsumoto and Satomura are two of the best Joshi wrestlers currently on the scene. So it was an odd pairing. The Matsumoto/Satomura pairings were great, lots of hard hits, and the Eiger comedy spots were sparse so they didn’t control the match. But they were still there and it was an odd dynamic. It was a fun match but I’d rather they split the two ideas into two matches as it was just hard for them to get into a flow of things with such a diverse group. Worth watching for Matsumoto/Satomura but a bit too all over the place for me overall.

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Command Bolshoi and Kyoko Kimura vs. DASH Chisako and KAORU

This is Kyoko Kimura’s final match in Sendai Girls’. For the special occasion, she tags with Command Bolshoi, her old friend and JWP veteran. On the other side are the regular Sendai Girls’ tag team of Chisako and KAORU. They have been teaming since Sendai Sachiko retired last January and recently held the Sendai Girls’ Tag Team Championship.

Bolshoi and Chisako start the match, they trade headlocks until Chisako hits a dropkick. They trade quick trips before returning to their feet, and both tag out. KAORU and Kyoko are slow to engage but eventually do so, and Kyoko pushes KAORU to the mat. Chisako comes in and they double team Kyoko, KAORU slams Kyoko’s head into the mat and tags Chisako back in. Kyoko comes back with a scoop slam and tags Bolshoi, Bolshoi gets Chisako on her shoulders and applies a backbreaker. Bolshoi applies a camel clutch, Kyoko comes in and they double team Chisako. Kyoko boots Chisako in the back, she gets on the second turnbuckle and hits a diving footstomp onto Chisako’s back for a two count. Kyoko puts Chisako in a crab hold, she lets go after a moment and tags in Bolshoi. Backdrop suplex by Bolshoi, and she covers Chisako for two. Dropkick by Chisako and she hits a front flip neckbreaker, she rolls to her corner and tags in KAORU. KAORU hits a crossbody on both Kyoko and Bolshoi, she gets her table piece and hits Bolshoi with it. KAORU then suplexes Bolshoi onto it, but the referee won’t count the cover due to the excessive cheating. KAORU gets on the second turnbuckle and tries to drop it onto Bolshoi, but Bolshoi moves and dropkicks KAORU. Fujiwara Armbar by Bolshoi, but KAORU gets a foot in the ropes. Bolshoi picks up KAORU and hits a palm strike, but Chisako runs in and dropkicks her. Double front suplex by Chisako and KAORU, brainbuster by KAORU and she covers Bolshoi for two. Missile dropkick by Chisako but Bolshoi lands in her corner and tags in Kyoko. Kyoko and Chisako trade elbows, Kyoko picks up Chisako and she hits a backbreaker. Stretch hold by Kyoko, she picks up Chisako and knees her into the corner. Kyoko charges Chisako but Chisako moves, KAORU comes in and they double team Kyoko in the corner.

sendai1-9-4Chisako goes up top and she hits a missile dropkick on Kyoko for two. Kyoko gets Chisako’s back and applies a sleeper, KAORU comes in to help but Bolshoi puts her in a sleeper as well. Chisako eventually gets to the ropes to force the break, Kyoko covers the sleepy Chisako but it gets a two count. Kyoko kicks at Chisako but Chisako returns to her feet, Bolshoi runs in and she hits a Tiger Feint Kick on Chisako. Running boot by Kyoko, but Chisako gets a shoulder up. Kyoko gets Chisako on her shoulders and hits an assisted Gory Bomb with Bolshoi, but the cover is broken up. Kyoko goes off the ropes but Chisako ducks the boot and hits Kyoko with a piece of table. Kyoko headbutts Chisako in return, and they both fall to the mat. They trade strikes while still on their knees, they return to their feet and Chisako hits a Stunner. Elbows by Chisako but Kyoko boots her in the head, hurricanrana by Chisako which gets her a two count. Crucifix takeover by Chisako, she goes off the ropes but Kyoko boots her in the head for a two count. Kyoko picks up Chisako and hits a Chokebomb, but Chisako gets a shoulder up. Kyoko goes up top but KAORU hits her with a piece of table, Chisako joins Kyoko and delivers an avalanche bulldog, crucifix cover by Chisako but it gets two. Kyoko comes in and hits the Excalibur, Chisako goes up top as does KAORU and KAORU superplexes Chisako onto Kyoko, but Bolshoi breaks up the pin. Chisako goes up top and nails the Hormone Splash while KAORU hits the Valkyrie Splash onto Bolshoi, and Chisako gets the three count pinfall! DASH Chisako and KAORU are the winners.

After the match, everyone hugs Kyoko and says goodbye to her.

On one hand, this match was a bit too long and five minutes could have easily been chopped off and it would have helped the match. On the other hand, these four are friends and this is the last time they’d ever be in the ring together, so who can blame them for going a bit longer than necessary. All of them are long time veterans and know how to put on a good show, no issues with sloppiness here as the action was tight throughout. And it had some memorable spots, such as the superplex landing on Kyoko. It certainly dragged in a few sections as some moments such as the sleeper hold lasted a bit too long, but overall it was still a solid match and a fitting Sendai Girls’ farewell to Kyoko Kimura.  Mildly Recommended

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(c) Chihiro Hashimoto vs. Aja Kong
Sendai Girls’ World Championship

Only one year into her career, Chihiro Hashimoto defeated the great Meiko Satomura on October 16th for the Sendai Girls’ World Championship. After a successful defense against Cassandra Miyagi, Chihiro faces her greatest challenge yet – the legendary Aja Kong. Aja Kong defeated Meiko Satomura for the right to challenge for the title, she last challenged for the championship in April of 2016. If Chihiro can defeat Aja Kong it would be an impressive feat, but it won’t be an easy task for the much less experienced wrestler.

They circle each other to start, Kong gets Chihiro to the mat but Chihiro gets the top position and they struggle for position. Back on their feet, Chihiro takes Kong back down but Kong applies an ankle hold. Kong pushes Chihiro to the mat and rolls her out of the ring, Kong goes out after her and throws her into the crowd. Kong hits Chihiro repeatedly with chairs while beating her around the floor before finally bringing her back into the ring, lariat by Kong and she covers Chihiro for two. Kong picks up Chihiro and drops her with a backdrop suplex, cover by Kong but Chihiro gets a shoulder up. Body slam by Chihiro and she hits a pair of somersault sentons for a two count. Chihiro picks up Kong but Kong knees her off, Chihiro goes for lariats but Kong doesn’t go down. Kong rams Chihiro into the corner and hits a back bodydrop, Kong gets on the second turnbuckle but Chihiro recovers and powerbombs her to the mat.

sendai1-9-5Cover by Chihiro, but Kong gets a shoulder up. Chihiro picks up Kong and charges her, but Kong moves and Chihiro falls out of the ring. Kong goes out after her but Chihiro picks her up and hits a waterwheel drop on the floor. Chihiro and Kong return to the ring, Chihiro slams Kong and hits another waterwheel drop, but Kong barely kicks out of the cover. Kong drops down and kicks Chihiro in the head, Kong hits Chihiro with a paint can before delivering a brainbuster. Kong picks up Chihiro and hits a German suplex, but Chihiro returns to her feet and nails a spear. They both slowly get up, Kong applies an ankle hold but Chihiro gets to the ropes. Chihiro picks up Kong but she drops her, Uraken by Kong but Chihiro rolls her up when Kong goes for a cover. Waterwheel Drop by Chihiro, she goes for a German suplex but Kong blocks it and hits a Uraken, picking up the three count! Aja Kong is the new champion!

I don’t know if this felt like a big championship match but it was still pretty fun. The match was a bit slow paced, with two different ‘brawling outside the ring’ segments which there wasn’t really time for. Add in the long ankle hold that had no meaning, and there was a bit more time killing than I’d prefer in a 15 minute match. That being said, the rest of the action was top notch, as Kong threw around Chihiro like she was a child but Chihiro did enough to show she wasn’t a push-over. In fact, since she never hit the move she used to beat Satomura (German Suplex), she still has a ‘move in the hole’ if needed at a later date that Kong has never kicked out of. I liked Chihiro’s fire and Kong’s suplexes which took it up a notch, but still a bit lacking for a championship match.  Mildly Recommended