Event: Stardom World Big Summer in Osaka
Date: July 20th, 2019
Location: Edion Arena Osaka #2 in Osaka, Japan
Announced Attendance: 563
This year for Stardom I have been focusing on their Korakuen Hall events, but I had to take a step away from that to take a look at this show. For Stardom World Big Summer in Osaka, Stardom put on a full (for them) six match card with three title matches, with a defense of the Artist of Stardom Championship in the main event. We also get some of the better Gaijin wrestlers joining us, with Bobbi Tyler, Jamie Hayter, Bea Priestley, and Zoe Lucas all on the show. Here is the full card:
Even though I prefer to watch the Samurai TV version of the bigger Stardom events, that wasn’t an option here so I am watching the show on Stardom World. All wrestlers on the card have a profile on Joshi City, you can click on their name above to go straight to it.
Bobbi Tyler vs. Starlight Kid
Most of the time, Stardom kicks off with a generally fine but forgettable rookie match, so I am glad for this event they did something a bit different. Bobbi is a semi-regular in Stardom and an official member of Oedo Tai, she’s in Stardom for the summer and gets a special singles match against the young Starlight Kid. Starlight Kid is 17 but has been wrestling for several years and is one of the brightest young stars that the promotion has. Even though this is just an opener, I expect both to be impressive.
They tie-up to start, Bobbi pushes the smaller Starlight Kid into the ropes and gives her a clean break. They trade waistlocks, Starlight Kid gets Bobbi to the mat and applies a kneelock, but Bobbi kicks out of it and reverses the hold. They trade positions before reaching a stalemate, wristlock by Bobbi back on their feet but Starlight Kid uses the ropes to reverse it. Armdrag by Starlight Kid and she dropkicks Bobbi out of the ring, she goes off the ropes but feints back into the ring instead of doing a dive. Bobbi gets back in, Starlight Kid goes for a slam but Bobbi reverses it and hits one of her own. Bobbi picks up Starlight Kid and stretches her in the ropes, stomps by Bobbi and she chokes Starlight Kid with her boot in the corner. Cover by Bobbi, but it gets two. Irish whip by Bobbi but Starlight Kid ducks her lariat and hits a tilt-a-whirl headscissors,
Tiger Feint Kick by Starlight Kid and she hits a standing moonsault for two. Starlight Kid goes for a cross-legged suplex but Bobbi blocks it, Starlight Kid elbows Bobbi into the corner but Bobbi avoids her dropkick. Elbows by Bobbi and she hits a running elbow followed by a cutter. Superkick by Bobbi, and she covers Starlight Kid for two. Bobbi applies a choke before going off the ropes, but Starlight Kid ducks the pump kick and hits a springboard crossbody. Cross-legged bridging suplex by Starlight Kid, but Bobbi kicks out. Starlight Kid goes up top and delivers the swivel body press, but again Bobbi gets a shoulder up. Bobbi comes back with an enzuigiri and a superkick, cover by Bobbi but it gets a two count. Bobbi picks up Starlight Kid but Starlight Kid slides away and schoolboys her for two. Starlight Kid goes off the ropes but Bobbi catches her with a rope-assisted reverse STO. Bobbi waits for Starlight Kid to get up and nails the Pump Kick, cover by Bobbi and she gets the three count! Bobbi Tyler is the winner.
It started a bit slow for a shortish match, but once they got rolling I enjoyed it. These two don’t have a lot of experience against each other (in a live setting anyway) but meshed up pretty well, and Starlight Kid continues to slowly grow her arsenal as she becomes a more complete wrestler. Certainly a fun match, with only four or five minutes of meaningful action its hard to give a strong recommendation but a solid way to open the show. Mildly Recommended
Arisa Hoshiki and Saya Iida vs. Natsuko Tora and Jamie Hayter
Arisa, what the hell are you doing all the way down here teaming with a rookie. That’s one thing about Stardom that makes them different from most wrestling promotions around the world, they have no issue putting their champions early on in the card if they don’t fit anywhere else. The Wonder of Stardom Champion teams with Saya Iida, the undersized rookie that debuted in January. They are against two members of Oedo Tai, with Jamie Hayter in from the UK to team with the ever improving midcarder Natsuko Tora.
Natsuko and Saya kick things off, they go through some mat wrestling and trade holds until Saya gets a headscissors applied. Natsuko pushes out of it and they reach a stalemate, Saya goes to take out but Natsuko kicks her and rams her into the corner. Natsuko tags in Jamie, vertical suplex by Jamie and she mushes Saya in the face with her boot. Another suplex by Jamie, Natsuko comes in and they double team Saya in the corner. Natsuko stays in and tosses Saya by the hair a few times before hitting a scoop slam. Running body press by Natsuko, and she covers Saya for two. Natsuko kicks Saya in the head, Saya tries to fight back but Natsuko kicks her again before knocking Arisa off the apron. Natsuko picks up Saya but Saya ducks her lariat and dropkicks her in the knee. Another dropkick by Saya and she makes the hot tag to Arisa. Arisa boots Jamie off the apron and hits a jumping double knee on Natsuko, reverse diving kneedrop by Arisa to Natsuko and she kicks her in the head. More kicks by Arisa but Natsuko catches one and applies an ankle hold. And she appears to be biting her ankle as well. The referee gets her to stop, Arisa goes off the ropes but Natsuko catches her with a spinebuster.
Headscissors by Natsuko but it gets broken up by Saya, Jamie gets rid of Saya and they both elbow Arisa. Natsuko picks up Arisa and gets her on her shoulders, but Arisa slides off and goes off the ropes. Natsuko goes off the ropes too and hits a spear, she tags in Jamie who kicks Arisa in the chest. Sidewalk Slam onto her knee by Jamie, and she covers Arisa for two. Jamie picks up Arisa and goes off the ropes, but Arisa drills her with a jumping knee. Arisa tags Saya, she stays in the ring as they take turns elbowing Jamie. Double dropkick to Jamie, Saya footstomps off her back and covers Jamie for two. Saya goes for a scoop slam but Jamie blocks it, boot by Saya and this time she successfully hits the scoop slam for two. Saya picks up Jamie, Arisa returns and they take turns with strikes, but Natsuko breaks up Saya’s cover. Saya and Arisa go off the ropes but Natsuko catches them with a double spear, elbow and a kick by Jamie to Saya but her cover gets a two count. Jamie picks up Saya but Saya sneaks in an inside cradle for two. She tries another flash pin but Natsuko breaks it up, Saya goes off the ropes but Jamie delivers a lariat. Short-range lariat by Jamie and she nails a brainbuster unto her knee for the three count pinfall! Natsuko Tora and Jamie Hayter are the winners.
A step down from the last match but still generally inoffensive. The chemistry wasn’t quite there on a few spots as not everything was smooth, but no one really stuck out as not fitting in which is a plus. Saya Iida can be a bit hit-and-miss but looked fine for a rookie here, the match was just void of anything particularly memorable aside from Arisa’s always fun jumping knee, which generally connects pretty well. For its spot on the card, perfectly acceptable wrestling but nothing memorable.
Bea Priestley, Momo Watanabe, and Leo Onozaki vs. Hana Kimura, Jungle Kyona, and Konami
The faction wars continue, as Queen’s Quest takes on Tokyo Cyber Squad. This is a high spot for Leo Onozaki for a Stardom show and she sticks out a bit as out of place, considering everyone else in the match is a former (or current) Stardom champion. Bea holds the World of Stardom Championship and is the top Gaijin in Stardom (if you don’t believe me, just ask her), while Momo currently is title-less but recently held both the Wonder of Stardom Championship and Goddesses Of Stardom Championship. On the TCS side, Konami and Jungle Kyona are the current Goddesses of Stardom Champions while Hana like Momo has no belt but recently held the Artist Of Stardom Championship. So a lot of firepower in this midcard match, plus Leo who rarely wins at all.
Kyona and Leo are the first two in, Kyona works a headlock and shoulderblocks Leo when she finally gets out of it. Leo fights back with elbows by Kyona returns the favor, she goes off the ropes but Leo elbows her again. Leo tries to knock over Kyona with elbows and finally succeeds with a dropkick, she goes for a suplex but Kyona blocks it. All the wrestlers end up running in to set up a vertical suplex line, and TCS delivers a triple vertical suplex. Giant Swing by Kyona to Leo, she lets go and covers her but Momo breaks it up. Kyona throws Leo into Hana’s boot before tagging her in, Hana tosses Leo by the hair a few times and chokes her with her boot in the corner. Hana picks up Leo and hits a scoop slam, she throws Leo in the corner and tags in Konami. Konami snapmares Leo and kicks her in the back, stomps by Konami but Leo elbows her into the corner. A hard elbow by Leo sends Konami to the mat and she makes the tag to Bea, running elbow by Bea in the corner and she dropkicks Konami in the back for a two count cover. Strike combination by Konami but Bea avoids her charge in the corner and kicks her in the head. Northern Light Suplex by Bea, but Hana and Kyona both break it up.
Bea dropkicks both of them out of the ring, she picks up Konami but Konami hits an enzuigiri. Konami goes off the ropes but Bea drops her with a jumping knee and tags in Momo. Dropkicks by Momo to Konami in the corner, she goes for a uranage but Konami blocks it and hits a high kick. That gives her time to tag in Hana, running boot by Hana to Momo and she hits a second one. Hana picks up Momo but Momo kicks her in the chest, they trade kicks but Hana accidentally boots Kyona when she tries to help. That leads to Hana being triple teamed, ending with a Momo Somato for a two count cover. Momo applies a crossface chickenwing but Kyona breaks it up, Momo goes up top but Hana avoids her dive off and hits a dropkick. Momo lands near her corner and tags Leo, but Hana promptly boots her in the face for a two count. Hana goes for a suplex but Leo reverses it, she goes for a few flash pins but Hana kicks out of each one. Leo picks up Hana and hits a series of elbows, she goes off the ropes but Kyona runs in with a lariat. TCS take turns on Leo, Hana hits a big boot but her cover is broken up. Kyona and Konami clear the ring, Hana goes up top and nails a missile dropkick on Leo for the three count! TCS win!
I am shocked, shocked I say that Leo was the one that took the fall. A good match but the issue with six wrestler tag matches that don’t get a lot of time is some wrestlers simply don’t get the chance to do anything of note. Here that was mostly Bea, who had one short segment, and since I like Bea I wish I could have seen her do a bit more on the show. Leo was the focus of course but she was given some shine spots so she wasn’t completely dominated, but I do prefer these matches not have such an obvious loser. The wrestler quality in this one was high so the action was fine, it just didn’t get the time that these wrestlers generally deserve.
(c) Utami Hayashishita vs. Zoe Lucas
SWA Undisputed World Women’s Championship
And we enter the “title” portion of the card. The SWA (Stardom World Association)
Undisputed Championship has unique rules, in that it can only be defended against wrestlers from a different country. Which isn’t an issue for Stardom, as they work with a number of promotions in Europe, plus there are frequently other random Gaijin on their events. “Big Rookie” Utami Hayashishita won the title in January from Viper, and this is her third defense of the championship. She faces challenger Zoe Lucas, this is her first Stardom tour in a year but she has grown a lot since then as she comes in with titles from RevPro and RISE. This isn’t a high end challenge for Utami but Zoe isn’t a pushover, so this should be a competitive match.
Tie-up to start, Utami pushes Zoe into the ropes but Zoe switches positions with her and slaps her in the face. Utami tackles Zoe and applies a stretch hold into a headlock, but Zoe quickly gets into the ropes. Irish whip by Utami but Zoe avoids her charge by sliding out to the apron and kicks her in the head. Scissors Kick by Zoe from the apron, she cradles Utami back in the ring but it gets a two count. Leg drop by Zoe to Utami’s leg and she slams her knee into the mat before twisting it in the ropes. Zoe gets Utami back to the middle of the ring and stretches her, another leg to Utami’s leg and she covers her for two. Zoe picks up Utami but Utami ducks a lariat, she goes for a dropkick but Zoe moves out of the way. Zoe picks up Utami and throws her into the corner to choke Utami with her boot. Zoe puts Utami’s leg across the second rope before kicking her and dropkicking Utami in the knee. Cover by Zoe, but it gets a two count. Zoe goes to the ropes and hits a slingshot splits legdrop, but Utami kicks out of the cover. Zoe kicks at Utami, she picks up Utami but Utami fires back with elbows. Judo Throw by Utami and she hits a running elbow in the corner, STO by Utami and she covers Zoe for two.
Back up they trade elbows, Zoe kicks Utami in the knee and then in the head, she goes off the ropes and hits a bulldog. Cradle by Zoe, but Utami kicks out. Zoe applies a cross kneelock but Utami gets to the ropes for the break. Zoe picks up Utami and puts her leg across the second rope in the corner, she charges her but Utami moves out of the way and hits a lariat. Utami goes up top but Zoe kicks her before she can jump off, Zoe joins her but Utami pushes her off. Zoe kicks her again and tosses Utami to the mat, cover by Zoe but it gets a two count. Zoe goes off the ropes and nails a splits legdrop to Utami’s head, but that gets a two count as well. Zoe picks up Utami, head kick by Zoe but Utami slides behind her back and applies a sleeper hold. Zoe gets to the ropes for the break, Utami picks her up but Zoe applies a sunset flip. PK by Zoe, she picks up Utami and they quickly trade holds. Utami gets Zoe’s back and hits a German suplex hold, and she picks up the three count! Utami Hayashishita wins and retains the championship.
Even though I am the #1 Utami stan, I can still recognize when she has a match that isn’t very good, which is the case here. Even the structure itself seemed off, as I am surprised that the plan was for Zoe to dominate the match and for Utami to win with a ‘surprise’ German suplex without really any attempt to weaken Zoe first. Zoe’s offensive was fine, her leg work was done well and even though she spams the splits legdrop at least she hits it solidly, it was just odd that the champion won with only hitting a couple moves. Add in a miscommunication or two and overall the match was lacking, not a great title match and pretty skippable.
(c) Hazuki vs. AZM vs. DEATH Yama-san
High Speed Championship
Initially I was surprised that this match came after the SWA title match, but it makes more sense after watching it. Hazuki won the High Speed Championship last December and this is her 9th defense, so she has been pretty active. She is against the 16 year old but always improving AZM and against the veteran DEATH Yama-san, better known to most as Kaori Yoneyama. High Speed Championship matches have been pretty short during Hazuki’s reign so safe to assume this match will be fast paced as well.
AZM immediately charges Hazuki and all three end up running off the ropes before trading quick pin attempts. DEATH punches both of them but Hazuki trips her, slingshot footstomp by Hazuki and she gets into it. AZM hits a hurricanrana but Hazuki flips herself back to her feet and hits a dropkick. Hazuki picks up AZM and hits a scoop slam, she drop toeholds DEATH on top of her and hits a running senton on both. AZM ends up against the ropes, bootscrapes by Hazuki and she hits a running boot. Irish whip by Hazuki to the corner but AZM avoids her charge and headscissors Hazuki into the turnbuckle. Vertical suplex by AZM, and she overs Hazuki for two. AZM goes up top but DEATH runs in and puts Hazuki in a submission, but AZM come over and puts DEATH in a hanging armbar at the same time. Hazuki crawls to the rope and forces the break, AZM clubs on both of them but DEATH flips her out to the apron. AZM slides herself back in, all three go for quick pins but none have any success. Double Irish whip to Hazuki but she ducks under the lariat attempts and hits a double Codebreaker. Hazuki stacks them in the corner and hits a running elbow, Hazuki goes to the apron and hits a double swandive dropkick for a two count on DEATH. Hazuki goes to pick up DEATH but DEATH blocks it, she goes off the ropes but DEATH delivers a jumping back kick. Code Red by DEATH, but AZM breaks up the cover. Tilt-a-whirl headscissors into the Fujiwara Armbar by AZM, but DEATH cradles AZM from behind for two. Pump Kick by Hazuki to AZM, DEATH tries to roll up Hazuki but Hazuki reverses it into a La Magistral. AZM breaks that up, Hazuki goes out to the apron but DEATH pushes AZM into Hazuki to send her to the floor before cradling AZM for the three count! DEATH Yama-san is the new High Speed Champion!
For what they were going for, I thought the match was good but its a bit disappointing to see Hazuki drop the belt in this fashion. Hazuki has tried hard in the last seven months to make the title mean something after it kinda fell out of the spotlight during Mary Apache’s run, so her losing it without getting pinned feels like a cheap way to end things. While it was likely done to keep her “strong” as she goes for a bigger title, this was the easy way out and felt flat. The action itself was good, as good as a five minute match can be as it was smooth and fast paced as you’d expect. An entertaining match, and Hazuki looked great, just not what I’d consider an ideal conclusion to a eight month title reign for Hazuki. Mildly Recommended
(c) Mayu Iwatani, Saki Kashima, and Tam Nakano vs. Kagetsu, Andras Miyagi, and Natsu Sumire
Artist of Stardom Championship
Main event time! The STARS team of Mayu, Saki, and Tam won the Artist of Stardom Championship on June 23rd against Tokyo Cyber Squad, and this is their second defense of the titles. They go up against a stacked team from Oedo Tai, with the leader Kagetsu being joined by the recently signed Andras Miyagi and Natsu Sumire. Oedo Tai as a faction doesn’t have any titles in Stardom now that Hazuki lost, so a win here would quickly regain the group some gold so they don’t end the event title-less.
Oedo Tai attack STARS before the bell rings, which STARS for some reason seem surprised about, and the action immediately spills to the outside with Oedo Tai maintaining control. Mayu and Tam are both tossed into the chairs at ringside before Kagetsu spits water in Mayu’s face and Tam is thrown into the ring post. Natsu eventually returns to the ring with Saki, and Natsu hits her repeatedly with a weapon while the referee isn’t looking. She tags in Andras, boots by Andras in the corner and she hits a scoop slam. More slams by Andras, she picks up Saki and throws her into the corner before tagging in Kagetsu. Kagetsu spits water in Saki’s face and then at Tam as well, scoop slam by Kagetsu to Saki and she tags Natsu back in. Irish whip by Natsu but Saki reverses it, Natsu hits an atomic drop on her and then gives Mayu the same. Tam tries to help but also gets an atomic drop, Natsu goes off the ropes but Saki ducks her boot and kicks Natsu in the leg. Saki goes off the ropes and boots Natsu in the head, giving her time to tag in Tam. Andras is also tagged in, she throws Tam into the corner but Tam kicks her back when she charges in and hits a diving neckbreaker. Running knee by Tam but Andras catches her kick, Tam slides away and drops Andras with a backdrop suplex. Cartwheel into a kneedrop by Tam and she tags in Mayu.
Mayu runs in but promptly eats a DDT for her trouble, giving Andras time to tag in Kagetsu. Kicks by Kagetsu, she throws Mayu into the corner and hits a jumping elbow. Mayu returns the favor with an elbow of her own before dropkicking Kagetsu squarely in the head. Northern Lights Suplex by Mayu, but Kagetsu kicks out. Kagetsu ends up against the ropes, dropkick by Mayu and she puts Kagetsu in a crab hold. She switches it to a guillotine but Kagetsu makes it to the ropes, Natsu whips Mayu from the apron and Andras runs in with a dropkick. Ebisu Drop by Kagetsu, and she covers Mayu for two. Kagetsu hits another one, she gets up on the top turnbuckle but Tam hits her from the apron. Saki comes in and hits a Frankensteiner, Frog Splash by Mayu but Kagetsu gets a shoulder up on the cover. Mayu picks up Kagetsu and goes for the dragon suplex, but Kagetsu blocks it. Boot by Andras as all six wrestlers get involved, leaving the ring cleared with just Mayu and Kagetsu. They both crawl to their corners and tags in Natsu and Saki, Natsu charges Saki and hits the Bronco Buster in the corner. Natsu gets on the top turnbuckle but Saki avoids her diving crossbody, face crusher by Saki but Natsu drives her foot into Saki’s face.
Boot by Saki but Natsu sneaks in an inside cradle for two. Kagetsu and Andras both come in but Saki and Tam take care of them, triple dropkicks by STARS and they all take turns superkicking Natsu. Mayu and Tam double team Natsu with an assisted German suplex, Saki goes up top and delivers a diving double kneedrop to Natsu, but Andras breaks up the cover. Double arm facebuster by Saki and she hits a butterfly suplex hold for two. Saki nails the Unprettier, but Andras breaks up her pin attempt. Oedo Tai clear the ring, Andras and Kagetsu double team Saki before Natsu hits a jumping lariat. Bridging suplex by Natsu, but it gets a two count. Natsu goes for a fisherman buster but Saki blocks it, so Natsu drills her with the Demon (Capture DDT) instead. Cover by Natsu, but everyone breaks it up. Kagetsu and Andras clear the extra STARS members, Shining Wizard by Natsu to Saki but Saki quickly applies a crucifix pin for two. Oedo Tai toss all the members of STARS out of the ring, Kagetsu and Andras both get running starts and sail out onto all three with tope suicidas. Saki is quickly rolled back in, Steel Ball Run by Andras to Saki and Kagetsu delivers the Oedo Coaster. Demon by Natsu to Saki, and she picks up the three count! Oedo Tai are the new champions!
A quality main event, really enjoyable. It won’t reach any MOTYC discussions but it was what you’d expect – a fun chaos-filled match with six wrestlers very comfortable with each other so everything seemed seamless. A more dominating victory than I would have expected, as Oedo Tai controlled the match and then pinned Saki decisively with minimal cheating (for them). All six got at least a bit of a chance to shine but Kagetsu always stands out to me, she’s just so polished and on point with both her in-ring work and her overall character. An entertaining way to end the show, and a moment for Natsu to remember as she wins the first title in her career. Recommended
I came into this event with high expectations, but left it remembering why I usually skip non-Korakuen Hall Stardom events. That is not to say it was a bad event, it was perfectly fine overall, but nothing was really memorable and a couple of the matches weren’t as good as I was hoping. The opener and the main event were my favorite matches of the show, with the mid-card tags being solid but par for the course. Utami/Zoe was oddly laid out and a few steps below from what I’d except from a title match however, and Hazuki’s title reign ending by not being pinned felt flat. Top to bottom, a ‘good enough’ event but it felt closer to a house show than an important show in execution.