Five matches meant we had a packed episode of International Pro Wrestling TV – giving us new contenders, new faces… and way too much crammed into an hour.

We open with a sit-down piece of Kip Sabian, who talked about how he and Chris Ridgeway “came up together” in IPW, and were best friends throughout, before he got cheap shotted after beating Ridgeway at Undisputed 2 last December… which he reckoned played a part in Sabian losing the IPW title later in the show. Ridgeway’s taken to cheapshotting after matches it seems, and it seems that Kip Sabian’s got his focus on his former friend as he looks for answers.

Cue titles… and we’re back in Unit 9 in Milton Keynes with Dave Bradshaw on commentary as we open with action.

David Starr vs. Rob Sharpe
This is to determine the next challenger for Mark Haskins’ title, and there’s brief passing mention of Sharpe’s team and feud with Jack Sexsmith last year.

Starr’s frustrated early as Sharpe took him down with a uranage… before he’s tossed into the corner as Sharpe unleashed with some body blows on the Product. A back body drop dumps Sharpe awkwardly into the top turnbuckle, and that’s the turning point as Starr retaliated before a snapmare and a PK to the back left Sharpe on the mat. A floatover suplex gets Starr an early near-fall, but Sharpe’s right back in with chops as Starr then ate some running forearms and back elbows. Sharpe’s fallaway slam takes Starr into the ropes, but he stays on him with an attempted reverse DDT, only for Starr to roll through for a near-fall… then get hurled across the ring with an Exploder suplex as the pendulum continued to shift.

Starr nearly wins with a superkick, but the ref spotted that Starr had his feet on the ropes, and in the ensuing argument, Sharpe hits him with a lifting reverse DDT into a tombstone – the Ducky Driver – for the win. This felt way too short for a number one contender’s match, but I guess it’s nice IPW’s putting their guys over on top. **¾

Grizzly vs. Gene Munny
I swear this is familiar… this had better be GOOD. Unlike Gene’s “already in the ring” intro, which accompanied him and his taped nipples.

Grizzly charges Munny into the corner at the bell, then hurls him out with a Beele throw. Poor Gene. A chop from Gene barely registers, unlike Grizzly’s response, which flattened him ahead of a back senton as Munny was forced to come back with a cravat knee… only to get wiped out with a Grizzly lariat.

Someone in the crowd tried to compare Grizzly to Sha Samuels, as he flattened Gene in the corner with an avalanche, then a back senton off the top rope for a near-fall. Munny tries to fight back with a pump kick, but he’s caught up top with a choke bomb – called the Grizzly End – as this squash ended. A dominant showing from the Welshman, who looks set to be getting a rocket tied to him.

Promo time with Ben Basden, who did a lot better than most expected in the IPW Junior Heavyweight tournament last month.

Ben Basden vs. The OJMO vs. Cieran Donnelly vs. James Castle
Donnelly and OJMO got the “already in the ring” treatment, as the four-way started with some clubbering.

OJMO’s tossed outside as Basden and Donnelly tried to go at Castle, but the tournament finalist catches Basden with an enziguiri before Donnelly trips him to the outside as Castle was looking for a dive. A hiptoss/slam from Donnelly took down OJMO for a near-fall, but OJMO’s right back with some misdirection in the ropes en route to a ‘rana and a dropkick. OJMO keeps up with a trip as he tried to catch Donnelly in a half crab, but he’s pushed away as Basden and Donnelly tried to work together. That backfires, so OJMO goes for a dive… going off of the crowd barrier with a body press into the pair of them! Donnelly responds by kicking OJMO through the ropes before he and Basden turned their sights on each other, using forearms on each other before James Castle comes in with a double double foot stomp to the pair of them for a near-fall.

Dropkicks from OJMO begin a Parade of Moves… one that ends with a diving knee from Castle dubbed the Nail Bomb, only for Basden to throw him out and steal the pin. This was decent while it lasted, but again… way too short! **¾

There’s a promo from Chris Ridgeway, who dismisses his recent losses as “not honest wins” because he lost via roll-ups. He also claimed that Daisuke Harada said some stuff that rubbed him up the wrong way, before Ridgeway blew off the interview as talk turned to Kip Sabian. Ah well.

Team Storm (Jonny Storm & Andreas Corr) vs. Anti-Fun Police (Chief Deputy Dunne & Lil’ Cadet Joe Nelson)
Well this is the configuration of the Anti-Fun Police in IPW, as Chief Deputy Dunne’s got a cadet… who actually fits into Dunne’s gear too!

There’s some non-TV friendly language on show as the match gets going, with Storm shoving away Nelson… who replies with some headscissors as the youngster then took down Storm with a moonsault press out of the corner. A tag brings in Corr, who blasts Nelson with a forearm before he looked to powerbomb the relative rookie… only for him to slip out as Dunne tagged in to help out.

A wheelbarrow senton from Nelson gets a one-count before Jay Garner and Ashley Dunn tripped Nelson… causing the referee to throw them both out. As Nelson watched on, he was caught with a clothesline, then a back suplex from Corr, who then tagged in Storm to come close with a slam. Nelson flips over Storm, who rolls back the clock to some World of Sport inspired sequences… only for Nelson to catch him with a cutter as a tag brings in Dunne. He knee drops Storm before a spear set up Corr for a springboard lungblower/back cracker combo… except Corr wasn’t legal apparently as the match just froze.

A dropkick from Nelson takes Corr into the ropes for a 999, before Dunne gets Nelson thrown into him… leaving him open for a shoulder tackle from Corr that almost ends it. Storm and Corr focus on Dunne for a while, except Jonny gloats too much and ends up leaping into Corr… right as Nelson tagged in with a springboard crossbody to the pair of them as an assisted Asai DDT to Corr gets Nelson the win. This was fine, but very ragged around the edges. **¾

Post-match, the Anti-Fun Police get jumped by a trio quickly identified as the Bone Brothers – Jonny, Jesse and Jamie – with one of the Poundland Shield-looking group landing a F5 as we went to commercial.

Next week: we’re told Rob Sharpe faces Mark Haskins for the IPW title… plus Rob Lynch in action… and Sierra Loxton defends the IPW Women’s title too.

Chris Ridgeway vs. Kip Sabian
Sabian takes the mic before the match and bemoans losing his friend at Undisputed 2 – before demanding that Ridgeway prove that he’s better than him.

The bell rings, and we start on the mat as Ridgeway scrambled for a hold… but Sabian wasn’t relenting, as the pair ended up shoving and slapping each other. Kip’s knee and kicks take Ridgeway outside, but they’re both back in as Ridgeway began to unleash some kicks of his own as he proceeded to trap Sabian in a modified STF. Ridgeway switches the hold into a double armbar – while the legs were still grapevined – but Sabian manages to slip free and grab the bottom rope. A side headlock keeps Ridgeway ahead as Sabian again had to fight to his feet… but he just struggled into a guillotine choke before he punched his way free.

Sabian hits back with a gamengiri and a springboard missile dropkick as he finally mounted some offence, following up with a leaping Meteora to knock Ridgeway down. Kicks from Kip barely faze Ridgeway, who leans into them, only to get knocked down as Sabian headed to the top rope… except he missed a double stomp, jarring his knee in the process. Ridgeway was on that straight away with a leg whip and a single leg crab, before he switched it into an ankle lock as Sabian ended up dragging himself into the corner.

Ridgeway doesn’t show any mercy as Sabian gets caught in the ropes with kicks, before Kip returned the favour with some body blows. It remained back and forth as they traded kicks and clubbering forearms in the ropes until the referee gets decked by a forearm from Chris Ridgeway… the locker room instantly empties out as the show drifts off air with no decision. On paper, this was a match that made sense.. But the problem was, it didn’t translate to the crowd, who was silent throughout, seemingly not caring about either man throughout the ebbs and flows… nor the wild finish that just didn’t play out as intended. **½

Compared to the debut episode, this week’s episode felt very flat – with five matches meaning that very little had a chance to settle, from the opening number one contenders match, to the arrival of Grizzly… it all left my mind before the end of the show, which isn’t a good thing. Next week’s show has two title matches though, so that should (in theory) get more time…