Event: Sendai Girls’
Date: March 9th, 2019
Location: Miyagino Ward Cultural Center in Sendai, Miyagi, Japan
Announced Attendance: 295
For reasons unknown to everyone, even though Sendai Girls’ has an online subscription service, instead of uploading events to that they have started uploading their events free on Youtube. And not just old events but recent events like this one, which was uploaded just a few days after it took place. Even though I question this decision I am happy for it as it allows me to watch recent Sendai Girls’ events for free. This isn’t a big show for the promotion, no title matches, but it does feature a handful of my favorite wrestlers in all of Joshi. Here is the full card:
Even though they didn’t include any fluff like graphics or backstage interviews, all matches will be shown in full. If you are not familiar with one of the wrestlers, you can click on their names above to to straight to their profile on Joshi City.
Manami vs. Mari Manji
As is a Joshi tradition, we begin the event with a rookie battle. Mari Manji debuted on April 15th, 2018 so she is almost at her one year mark, she is a PURE-J wrestler that hasn’t made tape very often so this is a special treat. We’ll find out shortly how she has progressed in her first year. She is against Manami, a literal child from Sendai Girls’ that debuted in July of 2017. Mari is twice as old as Manami so she has many advantages, this may end up being more of a learning experience for Manami than anything else.
Mari and Manami circle each other to start and trade wristlocks, dropkick by Manami and she knocks Mari down into the corner. Irish whip by Manami but Mari kicks her in the chest, she goes for a crab hold but Manami gets into the ropes. Judo tosses by Mari and she hits an armdrag and keeps an arm hold applied on the mat but Manami make it to the ropes. Armbreaker by Mari but Manami comes back with a pair of dropkicks, elbows by Manami but Mari knocks her back to the mat. Manami returns to her feet and the two trade elbows, a battle which Mari wins. Manami throws Mari into the corner and hits a dropkick, cover by Manami but it gets a two count. Elbows by Manami but Mari fires back with hard shoulderblocks, crab hold by Mari but Manami inches to the ropes for the break. Scoop slam attempt by Mari but Manami reverses it into a short armbar, Mari rolls out of it but Manami dropkicks her. Irish whip by Manami and she sneaks in a backslide for a two count. Cattle Mutilation by Manami but Mari gets into the ropes, Manami goes off the ropes but Mari hits a hard elbow. Side Russian Leg Sweep by Mari and she wraps up Manami in a stretch submission hold, and Manami has no choice but to submit! Mari Manji is the winner.
Even with Manami almost two years into her career, due to her age (14 at the time of this match) she is still going to be losing for awhile. She showed some fire and smoothness, anyone that makes it through training with Meiko Satomura is going to know what they are doing, and there may be some potential there. Mari was mostly in “abuse the child” mode which is a unique position for her, the offense wasn’t always exciting but it was methodical anyway. A good rookie opener.
Mikoto Shindo vs. Sareee
Always excited when I get to see a match with Sareee, one of the sleeper best young Joshi wrestlers currently on the scene. Sareee is a seven year veteran but is only 23 years old, she has wrestled and held her own against some of the top wrestlers in the business. She is against a 17 year old rookie from Marvelous; Mikoto has shown some early promise and has a great trainer in Chigusa Nagayo so I expect this to be more than just a typical rookie/veteran match.
Mikoto and Sareee circle each other but reach an early stalemate, knucklelock by Sareee and she flings Mikoto into the corner. They trade wristlocks and headlocks, Sareee goes off the ropes and they exchange armdrags. Dropkick by Mikoto but Sareee pushes her into the corner and tosses her down by the hair. Bodyscissors by Sareee and she elbows Mikoto hard in the chest, snapmares by Sareee and she hits a scoop slam. Crab hold by Sareee but Mikoto inches to the ropes for the break, dropkick to the back by Sareee and she puts Mikoto in a modified Muta Lock. She lets go after a moment and stomps Mikoto in the back, Irish whip to the corner by Sareee but Mikoto reverses it and hits a dropkick. Elbows by Mikoto but Sareee returns the favor and the two trade shots until Sareee sends Mikoto to the mat with a hard elbow. Mikoto gets back up but Sareee knocks her down again, Mikoto goes for a crossbody but Sareee catches her and hits a backbreaker. Crab hold by Sareee but Mikoto again gets to the ropes for the break, Sareee pulls her back to the middle but Mikoto rolls up Sareee for two. Dropkicks by Mikoto but Sareee dropkicks her back, Mikoto goes for a few flash pins but Sareee kicks out a two each time. Dropkicks by Mikoto, she picks up Sareee and hits a scoop slam for a quick cover. Back up, dropkick by Sareee and she drills Mikoto with another one while she is against the ropes, Sareee goes to the top turnbuckle and she hits a missile dropkick, but Mikoto barely kicks out of the cover. Sareee goes up top again and delivers a second missile dropkick, and this time she gets the three count! Sareee is the winner.
Even though it didn’t quite reach my hopes and dreams, this was still a fun early-card match. Sareee kept it basic for the rookie and didn’t do her full range of offense, she even seemed reluctant to do the dropkick against the ropes until she got frustrated that she hadn’t won yet. I do love the modified Muta Lock that Sareee uses, great looking move that she could probably use as a finisher if she wanted to. Mikoto didn’t get a chance to show much but was fine with what she did, as the year progresses hopefully she’ll continue to grow. Like the first match, nothing exciting but perfectly acceptable.
Hikaru Shida and Alex Lee vs. KAORU and Ray Lyn
A clash between two Freelancer and visitor teams, as none of these wrestlers are contracted to Sendai Girls’. KAORU is affiliated with Marvelous while her partner Ray Lyn has been in Japan as a Freelancer since the beginning of the month, wrestling in a few different promotions. On the other side, Hikaru Shida is currently the top Joshi freelancer, or at least she was until she signed a deal with AEW which was announced last week. She teams with Alex Lee, who is a regular Freelancer in Sendai Girls’ but mostly wrestles in the midcard. Low expectations going in but hopefully Shida gets a chance to be awesome.
Alex and Ray start the match, they are slow to engage but finally do as they trade holds. Alex punches Ray and gets her down to the mat, but Ray returns to her feet and applies a wristlock. Alex works a headlock but Ray gets out of it, hard shoulderblock by Alex and she throws Ray into the corner, but Ray avoids her charge and hits a tilt-a-whirl headscissors. They trade trips and covers but reach a stalemate as both return to their feet. Hikaru and KAORU tag in, Hikaru charges KAORU but KAORU holds down the top rope and Hikaru tumbles out of the ring. KAORU goes out after her as Ray comes over to help, Alex runs over two and both teams brawl around the floor. KAORU and Hikaru return, KAORU slams Hikaru in front of the corner and goes up top with her board, but Hikaru moves when she tries to drop it on her. KAORU picks the board up but Hikaru kicks it out of her hand, Hikaru slams KAORU in front of the corner and get on the turnbuckle with her kendo stick and drops it onto KAORU. KAORU is supposed to catch it but misses, so she ends up getting hit with it.
They have a chuckle, KAORU picks the kendo stick back up but the referee takes it from her and Hikaru hits a missile dropkick. She tags in Alex, kick by Alex and she throws KAORU into the corner, but KAORU boots her when she charges in and hits a big boot before tagging in Ray. Ray hits a DDT on Alex for a two count, she goes for a cutter but Alex pushes her away. They trade kicks until Alex tosses Ray to the mat and kicks her in the head for a two count cover. She tags in Hikaru, Hikaru knees Ray in the back of the head but Ray blocks the suplex attempt and connects with a series of kicks. Hikaru regains control and hits a vertical suplex, she throws Ray into the corner and delivers a jumping knee. Ray returns the favor with a knee of her own, another jumping knee by Hikaru but again Ray fires back with another knee. Ray goes up top and hits a missile dropkick, cover by Ray but Hikaru kicks out. Ray tags in KAORU who comes in with her board, but Hikaru gets her kendo stick to even the odds.
KAORU knocks the kendo stick out of Hikaru’s hand and hits her repeatedly with the board, backdrop suplex by KAORU and she goes up top, but Alex grabs her before she can hit the moonsault. KAORU boots Hikaru into the corner and into Alex before both she and Ray connect with running strikes, double vertical suplex to Hikaru and KAORU covers her for two. KAORU goes up top but Hikaru knocks her onto the apron and suplexes her back into the ring, she crawls to her corner and makes the hot tag to Alex. Alex kicks KAORU into the corner and hits a jumping knee, release German by Alex and she delivers a buzzsaw kick, but Ray breaks up the cover. Alex slams KAORU in front of he corner, she goes up top but KAORU avoids the footstomp attempt. KAORU gets her board but Hikaru grabs it from her, double Irish whip to KAORU but KAORU cartwheels away and boots Alex in the head. Scoop slam by KAORU, she goes to the top turnbuckle but Alex rolls out of the way of the Valkyrie Splash. Alex goes for a chokebomb but KAORU reverses it into a cradle for two, high kick by Alex but again KAORU sneaks in a flash pin for a two count. Hikaru runs in with a knee to KAORU, another buzzsaw kick by Alex but KAORU bridges out of the pin and cradles her for the three count! KAORU and Ray Lyn win the match!
While there were some talented wrestlers here, this felt very “small match mid-card”-y in execution. There was nothing really wrong with it, everyone got their spots in and Hikaru Shida was great the few times she got to do something, but it didn’t have any sense of urgency or meaning. I didn’t really like KAORU just bridging out of the pin after taking signature moves from both Alex Lee and Shida, it just felt a bit lazy for her to basically no-sell it to get the win. I like the bridging spot in general, it just didn’t really work for me there. A fundamentally fine but generally forgettable match.
Manami Katsu vs. Meiko Satomura
On small shows you never know what you are going to get, and this match is more special than it may appear on paper. Manami Katsu is one of the top young wrestlers in PURE-J, a smaller Joshi promotion that rarely makes tape. While she may never grow into a top level star, she’s had some good runs and isn’t a pushover, making this an interesting pairing. Meiko Satomura of course is the leader of Sendai Girls’ and a legend, anytime she faces off against a younger wrestler in a singles match something entertaining is bound to happen. A pretty random match but not one without potential.
Meiko and Manami lock knuckles to start but Meiko quickly gets Manami to the mat, they struggle for position until Meiko lets Manami go and both wrestlers return to their feet. Manami works a headlock, Meiko reverses it but Manami knocks her down with a hard shoulderblock. Manami puts Meiko in the Romero Special before letting to to drop an elbow on Meiko’s back. Manami applies a chinlock and then a bodyscissors, but Meiko spins out of it and elbows Manami in the face. Meiko gets Manami’s ankle but Manami gets into the ropes, Meiko elbows Manami into the corner and connects with a jumping elbow smash, but Manami returns the favor with her own elbows. Kicks by Meiko and she hits a vertical suplex, but Manami snaps off a Stunner and a kick to the head. Running boots by Manami and she hits a sliding knee, cover by Manami but it gets two.
Manami picks up Meiko but Meiko uppercuts her, kicks to the chest by Meiko and she delivers a spin kick to Manami’s head. Meiko goes for a cross armbreaker, but Manami blocks it and gets a foot on the ropes. Kick by Meiko but Manami hits a Samoan Drop, backdrop suplex by Manami but Meiko keeps a hold of her head with a headlock. Meiko applies a Fujiwara Armbar but Manami gets out of it, kicks by Meiko and she snaps Manami’s arm over her shoulder. She tries to do it again but Manami grabs Meiko around the neck and applies a Dragon Sleeper. Short range lariat by Manami, she goes off and hits a second lariat before covering Meiko for a two count. Manami connects with a spinning backfist, she picks up Meiko but Meiko spins away from her and delivers a high kick. Hard elbow by Meiko, Irish whip by Meiko and she hits a spinning heel kick. Death Valley Bomb by Meiko, and she picks up the three count! Meiko Satomura wins the match.
A straight-forward match, but a good one. I felt going in that Manami Katsu had no chance of winning this match and unfortunately they didn’t do anything to try to change my mind as Meiko kept things in control. She didn’t even need a lot of her bigger signature moves to put down Manami, a heel kick and one Death Valley Bomb was enough as the young Manami went down fairly easily. Manami did get in her shots, it was certainly not a squash, but it felt more like a Meiko clinic than a typical back-and-forth affair. A decent match but I am surprised that Meiko Satomura didn’t give Manami Katsu a bit more to work with. Mildly Recommended
Chihiro Hashimoto and Mika Iwata vs. DASH Chisako and Hiroyo Matsumoto
This match is the main reason I am watching this event, what a doozy this is. Chihiro Hashimoto and Mika Iwata are known as “Beauty Bear” and have been teaming off and on since early 2018. Both have their own singles careers as well, with Chihiro the Sendai Girls’ World Champion at the time of this match. They debuted in 2015 and are the “future” of Sendai Girls’, assuming they don’t leave like Cassandra Miyagi did. They are against two of the top veterans on the scene, with Sendai Girls’ DASH Chisako teaming with Freelancer (but Sendai Girls’ regular) Hiroyo Matsumoto. Chisako and Hiroyo also have been begun teaming regularly for the last few months so this isn’t the situation where two random wrestlers are thrown together. On paper this is a pretty even match, Mika Iwata is the weakest of the four but she is no slouch, and for a smaller show this is a quality main event.
Chisako and Chihiro are the first two in, they quickly end up on the mat but return to their feet as they struggle for control. Chisako boots Chihiro against the ropes, Hiroyo comes in as does Mika and the veteran team wins the exchange. Footstomp by Chisako to Chihiro, she throws her into the corner but Chihiro fires out of it with a hard shoulderblock. Mika gets back in and flips Chihiro onto Chisako, Chihiro tags Mika and Mika kicks Chisako in the back. Chisako elbows Mika and the two trade blows, Chisako boots Mika to the mat but Mika gets back up leading to more elbows being thrown. Chisako knocks Mika to the mat again and tags Hiroyo, Hiroyo knocks Chihiro off the apron and chops Mika into the corner. Hiroyo sets up Mika in the corner and hits a body avalanche, Mika fights back with elbows but Chisako runs in and she is double teamed. Chisako is tagged back in, face crusher by Chisako to Mika but Mika superkicks her and tags in Chihiro. Chihiro picks up Chisako but Chisako slides away and rolls her up for two, giving her time to tag Hiroyo. Chihiro knocks out both of them and tosses Chisako onto Hiroyo before hitting a somersault senton for a two count on Hiroyo.
Chihiro picks up Hiroyo and puts her in a stretch hold but Hiroyo reverses it, they trade lariat attempts until Hiroyo knocks Chihiro to the mat. Hiroyo goes off the ropes but Chihiro returns the favor with her own hard lariat, and both wrestlers are down. They slowly get up, another lariat by Chihiro and she covers Hiroyo for two. Chihiro tags Mika, kicks by Mika to Hiroyo but when Chihiro tries to help she elbows Chihiro by accident. Chisako comes in then but Mika kicks both of them, she goes off the ropes but eats a double dropkick. Hiroyo tags Chisako, Chisako goes up top and hits a missile dropkick followed by a sliding kick for a two count. Chisako picks up Mika but Mika knees her, jumping knee by Mika and she covers Chisako for two. Mika goes for a PK but Chisako ducks, Mika kicks her anyway however and after a second kick to the chest she covers her for a two count. Mika rolls to her corner and tags Chihiro, spear by Chihiro and she hits the Waterwheel Drop for two. Chihiro goes for a powerbomb but Chisako gets out of it, Hiroyo runs in and elbows Chihiro and Chisako knocks her in the ropes with a sliding kick. Chisako goes up top but Mika runs in and joins her, superplex by Mika and Chihiro gets on the second turnbuckle, but Hiroyo comes in and goes for her own superplex.
Chihiro elbows her before the move can be hit but Chisako joins Chihiro and delivers a Frankensteiner. Sliding elbow by Hiroyo to Chihiro, Chisako follows with a Northern Lights Suplex but Chihiro kicks out at two. Chisako goes back up and hits a diving footstomp, but again Chihiro barely gets a shoulder up. Chisako goes for the Hormone Splash but Chihiro rolls out of the way, Mika comes in to help but Hiroyo drops them both with a backdrop suplex. Chisako and Hiroyo Irish whip Chihiro but Chihiro lariats them both, diving body press by Mika and Chihiro follows with a diving somersault senton for two. Mika kicks Hiroyo in the head to get rid of her, Chihiro grabs Chisako and drops her with a release German. Chihiro picks up Chisako and nails a powerbomb, cover by Chihiro but Chisako kicks out. Chihiro grabs Chisako by the waist but Chisako gets into the ropes, Chihiro goes off the ropes but Chisako wraps her up and cradles Chihiro for the three count! DASH Chisako and Hiroyo Matsumoto win!
For a smaller show main event, this was a solid match. Chihiro is such a beast, I really enjoyed all of her segments as she has such a commanding presence and her strength is really impressive. All four got a chance to shine but Chihiro stuck out above the rest. The match had a clear line where they went from preliminary offense to a more urgent pace, and once they crossed that line the match stayed hot until the ending. The ending was a bit of a damper, not that Chisako isn’t at the level to pin the champion but I’d have preferred a more conclusive ending for the final match on the card. Still, an entertaining match featuring four really good wrestlers, any combination of these four brings quality wrestling every time. Recommended
This was clearly a smaller event for Sendai Girls’, and it showed as there was only a total of one hour of in-ring action. The main positive here is that none of the matches were bad, and we got an opportunity to see some younger wrestlers continue their growth. The only disappointing match for me was Sareee/Mikoto, not because it was bad but I was hoping to see Sareee give the rookie a bit more. The main event was really solid as was expected, nothing that will rock your world but a fun and captivating match. For a free show on Youtube, worth a casual watch but can probably be skipped by anyone that isn’t already a fan of Sendai Girls’.