We take a look at a new promotion now – and the third show out of New Wave Wrestling, who crowned their first champion last month.
Mark Andrews pinned James Ellis in 9:10 (***¼)
Danny Jones & Brendan White pinned Benjamin Harland & Jack Knudsen in 10:38 (***)
Dani Luna pinned Echo Reed in 9:19 (**)
Wild Boar pinned Shane Hooker in 13:15 (***¼)
James Ellis won a Rumble to become the New Wave Wrestling Champion in 51:29 (***½)
Formerly known as Dragon Pro out of Newport, New Wave Wrestling is picking up the baton when it comes to wrestling training in south Wales. Under the stewardship of Brendan White, New Wave have run three shows since (re)launching in September 2022 – with this one seeing the crowning of an inaugural New Wave champion.
We’re coming live via tape on YouTube from Cardiff’s St. Andrew’s URC Church. Commentary comes from Steve Andrew and Aluna Blue, while there is a familiar voice in the ring in the form of Francesca Oliver, best known from Rev Pro.
James Ellis vs. Mark Andrews
Ellis calls himself “the Brilliance,” and gets exactly the reaction you’d expect. The winner of this match goes into the New Wave Rumble in number thirty, while the loser starts at number one…
Ellis mouthed off early on, but got dropkicked to the outside by Andrews several times before he beat Andrews to the punch back inside. A Tiger feint kick to the knee of Ellis on the ropes starts some focus on the leg, with Dragon screws exacerbating it before Andrews tried a bodyslam.
Andrews doesn’t get it off, as Ellis slipped out and took him into the corners… then cut off a springboard as he looked to stop Andrews from taking to the air. On the outside, Ellis chops the post, but shook it off as he punted the ropes into Mark’s Andrews as they headed back inside.
Boot choking in the corner from Ellis keeps Andrews on the back foot, ahead of a hip attack in the corner. A back body drop throws Ellis away, but he’s makes a comeback and threatened to submit Andrews with an abdominal stretch. Ellis goes for the ropes, but the ref’s wise to it and instantly spots the attempts, eventually kicking the rope away as Andrews began a comeback.
A Northern Lights suplex from Andrews gets a near-fall, but Ellis’ leaping knee cracks Mark on the chin, only to get caught with a sunset flip for a near-fall. Andrews’ leap out of the corner’s turned into a spinebuster as we seemed to be in the final stretches, trading near-falls before Andrews rolled through an O’Connor roll to snatch the win! He’ll be the last man in in the New Wave title rumble, and Ellis gets the rough draw after this tidy opener. ***¼
Act Two (Benjamin Harland & Jack Knudsen) vs. Greedy Souls (Brendan White & Danny Jones)
Act Two have been putting a shift in around the UK scene – this was their New Wave debut…
Knudsen looked for some early flash pins on Jones, before Jones took a handshake and snapped him down in an arm whip. Brendan White’s in to dump Knudsen with a back elbow, as the Greedy Souls looked to wear down Knudsen… a Kitchen sink knee from Jones gets a quick two-count, before Knudsen manages to hit an up-kick and tag in Harland.
A dropkick from Knudsen gets Harland a one-count, before Knudsen returned to hit a back senton. Brendan White’s back in, but got tripped up by Knudsen before a blind-tag brought Jones back in as a powerslam from White turned the tables. It’s the Greedy Souls who start to land the combinations now, as a pair of back sentons nearly put Knudsen away, before Knudsen was launched into the turnbuckles with relative ease.
Uppercuts wear Knudsen down in the Souls’ corner, where frequent tags were exchanged as the Souls keep Knudsen isolated. White’s neckbreaker keeps Jack down, as did another bodyslam, while a back suplex kept those two-counts rumbling on. There’s a NICE catch as White stopped Knudsen in mid-air as he dove for a tag out…
Forearms from Knudsen just earned him a singular reply from Jones, before Knudsen snuck in a dropkick to knock White off the apron as he finally got the hot tag to Harland. Right hands from Harland beat away the Greedy Souls, before uppercuts and a roll-through Flatliner took down Jones. A neckbreaker awaits White for a near-fall, before Knudsen’s flip senton to White in the ropes, then Harland’s back cracker almost got Act Two that unlikely win.
White escapes another double-team, then tagged in Jones whose pop-up uppercut left Harland prone for a Falcon arrow… it does the deal for a near-fall, before a slingshot Bossman Slam forced Knudsen in to save the match. Knudsen looks for something, but eats a diving kick from White before it could amount to anything, leaving Harland open for a Soul Destroyer that finally won the match. ***
Echo Reed vs. Dani Luna
Reed had Jordan Sparkes at ringside to rile up fans on her behalf…
After trying to claim the referee was raising her hand as winner, Reed’s taken into the corner by Luna. Getting free, Reed’s unsuccessful with a waistlock, as Luna threw her to the mat with one as Sparkes pulled Reed outside to regroup. Back inside, Reed grabs the hair and takes Luna to the corner, but ends up getting caught with a boot and a leaping forearm as Luna grabbed a two-count.
A snap suplex from Luna starts the Three Amigos, but Sparkes again gets involved, grabbing Echo’s leg to stop the third suplex. A kick to Luna’s knee led to a snap Flatliner from Reed for a two-count, following up with shoulders in the corner.
Right hands take Reed to the corner ahead, but she reverses a whip into the opposite corner and caught Luna with almost an Eye of the Hurricane in the ropes for a near-fall. Reed adds a chin bar from there, but it’s broken free of as Luna ends up getting taken into the corner as a Tongan Twist from Reed almost won it.
Luna’s kept down with a chinlock, but she again breaks free and began to pull ahead with clotheslines and slams… almost taking the win with a clothesline before Sparkes popped up on the apron to take Reed off of Luna’s shoulders. Reed springboards back into the ring to hit a cutter for a near-fall, only for Luna to return with an Exploder suplex.
Sparkes is back up as Luna again went for her death valley driver/powerbomb combo… Luna goes to take a shot, but got hung up in the ropes – in full view of the referee, no less. That’s not a DQ, for reasons, as Reed then added a back suplex for a near-fall. From the kick-out, Reed’s sent into the ref, who sells it like death… allowing Sparkes back in take a shot at Luna… she moves, as Sparkes superkick wiped out Reed.
A German suplex dispatches Sparkes, allowing Luna to hit the death valley driver/powerbomb combo as darkness fell on Echo’s chances. This was fine given the experience levels, but they completely overegged the manager at ringside doing interference – while the referee didn’t help things towards the end! **
Shane Hooker vs. Wild Boar
Not going to lie, I was a little relieved that Hooker wasn’t doing anything close to a rugby gimmick!
Opening with a handshake, Hooker’s thrown aside by Boar in the early going, before he got taken and patronised in the ropes. Going for the arm, Boar yanks at Hooker’s wrist, only for Hooker to reverse it and wrench in the hold, until a bodyslam from Boar finally broke the grip. A side headlock from Boar’s an effective response, as was a forearm to the face as Hooker flipped around.
Hooker manages to catch Boar with an enziguiri, sending him outside as Hooker then faked out a dive. Yeah, I’d not fancy doing a dive towards that serving hatch either! Back inside, Boar’s tripped, but he’s able to catch Hooker on the top rope for a superplex, which drew a solid two-count. An Irish whip from Boar sends Hooker awkwardly into the corner, but the youngster’s able to fight back from the apron, meeting Boar with a kick before he was dumped with a short-range back elbow.
A short-arm clothesline keeps Hooker down, as the veteran Boar began to take control. Tiltawhirl headscissors from Hooker stopped that, only for Boar’s sit-out splash to nearly end things. From there, a pancake and a back senton from Boar picks up a two-count, before strikes prompted a fightback from Hooker, who found his way back with an overhead kick.
Running forearms from Hooker catch Boar in the corner, while a moonsault led to an eventual two-count as Hooker had issues putting Boar’s shoulder down. A missile dropkick follows for a near-fall, as Hooker then went back up… and had to leap over Boar, only to get squished in the corner.
A pop-up powerbomb from Boar followed for a near-fall, prompting Hooker to hit back with a superkick… then a 450 splash off the top that almost got the win. Boar tries to stop Hooker off the top rope, only to get caught with a flying Codebreaker… before he avoided a Phoenix Splash and clotheslined Hooker in return. From there, a cannonball and a Fire Thunder driver followed, and that’s all she wrote for Hooker – who looked good, if not a wee bit too flippy at times, against the more-experienced Boar. ***¼
Rumble Match for New Wave Wrestling Championship
For the sake of everyone’s sanity, I’m not going blow-by-blow here… of course, James Ellis started at number one, having lost in the opener. He’s joined by Nico Angelo at number two…
Ellis powdered early, heading through the ropes to the outside, wasting time until the timer went off for number three: Shaun Jackson. Nico gets a kicking, perhaps a double-action kicking, before Harrison Bennett (formerly Man Like Beano) evened things up. Ellis leaves Jackson to it as he looked to pick his spots throughout the match.
Alex Vaughn’s out at number five, as I’m mostly relying on commentary to fill in the blanks given the number of unknown-to-mes here. Vaughn goes after Jackson and Bennett, before another new entrant arrived in the form of Bevan. James Ellis is still hiding on the outside as Splits McPins joins… and in the interim, Ellis comes and goes, entering and exiting the ring through the ropes to stay alive.
Jimmy Taylor joins to the UEFA Champion’s League music and quickly throws everyone over the top and onto the apron… but not to the floor. They come back in and give him his comeuppance, throwing him out as Lloyd Katt entered. “Farm Strong” Toby Valentine’s in next, clearing house as he went after Bevan, but to no avail as Adam Carter entered. Nico Angelo chucks out Bevan as ELIJAH joins…
ELIJAH took care of Shaun Jackson, while James Ellis slid in… and got stomped to bits by Bowl-a-rama’s Katt and McPins. Splits and Vaughn exit as the cameras had a tough time of keeping up, before Leon Brando joined. ELIJAH turfs out Carter while Bennett threw out Katt to thin the herd a little. Ellis dives through the ropes to put the boots to Katt as Oliver Sudden (who’s got a hell of a name) enters.
Degnan comes in next, while James Ellis snuck back in… and scarpered at the sight of Nico Angelo. Leon Brando’s eliminated off-camera as Shane Hooker joined the match. KJ Toumbas is in next, and I’m massively appreciating him having his name on his gear (and his social media handle?)
Ellis is back as ELIJAH and Hooker combined with him to try and chuck out Sudden, but to no avail. Kurt Rayne’s in next, followed by Josh Holly, who tried to eliminate ELIJAH early on. Toby Valentine’s dumped out by Nico Angelo, before Ellis again powdered out at the first sign of any danger. Bennett tries to eliminate Degnan by way of tickling, as the countdown and music introduced Cal Adams. Angelo tries to eliminate Ellis, who saved himself as Angelo had another scare… more counting and music brings in Saime Sahin, who ran wild with clotheslines and bodyslams.
The imposing Mulligan’s in next, going right after Sahin before he chucked out Adams and Holly as they thought they’d buddied up to him. Rayne’s thrown out next by Mulligan, before Ethan Thomas joined the match… and slid right into a Mulligan stomp. A big boot snuffs out Thomas, before Degnan asked Mulligan if he could chuck out Thomas… and you can guess what happened next. Out goes Degnan, before Mulligan lifted out Thomas seconds later.
TJ Walding joins next, before Nico Angelo slid out of the ring and began to chase away Ellis. Walding’s chucked by Mulligan, before Billy Haze joined the fray… and had Shane Hooker thrown at him by Mulligan. Curt Atlas joins the match, adding to the number of bigger lads in this… Atlas goes after Hooker, then tried to eliminate Ellis, who broke free and (yes) rolled outside.
Mulligan tosses ELIJAH out of the match as Joshua James became the next big lad to lay waste to folk. Toumbas eats a spinebuster from James, who then squared up to Mulligan, laying in some right hands before Ellis saved Mulligan from elimination. You know what he did next. Angelo low bridges Curt Atlas over the top rope for a self-elimination, right as Jay Joshua entered and ran wild with clotheslines.
Joshua joined up with his Dead Sad Boys tag partner Billy Haze to try and eliminate Hooker, as we just about catch Saime Sahin getting thrown out. We’ve got two names left to join… Sid Oakley comes in at number 29, going straight for Bennett in the corner before he lifted him over the top rope as Bennett then pushed off a fan’s legs to save himself. The final countdown brings in Mark Andrews, who’d won the number thirty spot earlier in the night.
Andrews catches Oakley and Joshua with a knee slide and overhead kick, before he back body dropped Oakley over the top rope. Sid saves himself, before Oakley and Andrews combined to eliminate Toumas. An Andrews dropkick takes care of Oakley seconds later, before Mulligan slapped the taste out of Andrews’ mouth.
Angelo’s ‘rana dumps Joshua James out of the match, before Hooker tried to fight off Jay Joshua and Haze. Another ‘rana from Hooker sent Joshua over the top onto the apron, but Haze stopped Hooker, lifting him onto the apron too before Joshua knocked him down to the floor. Harrison Bennett’s diving kick knocks Haze off the apron, before he chucked Joshua out of the match.
Mulligan’s back to throw out Bennett, as we’re down to our final four – Andrews, Ellis, Mulligan and Angelo. Ellis tries to buddy up with Mulligan, but instead got chopped down. Ellis rolls under the bottom rope as Andres and Angelo try to lift out Mulligan, but he fought free of the pair, before a Stundog Millionaire and a dropkick from Andrews knocked him off the apron.
Ellis is in to lift out Andrews… but Nico Angelo wasn’t eliminated. Angelo’s back in, but gets thrown out by Ellis… only to skin the cat and clobber Ellis with a clothesline. Ellis gets thrown onto the apron, but not out of the match, before he avoided a kick from Angelo and teases suplexing him from the ring to the floor. Instead, Angelo lands on the apron as the pair trade blows… Ellis’ superkick sinks Angelo, but he eats one in return before Ellis slipped back inside and hit a low blow to Angelo. All he’s got to do is shove Nico off the apron, and that’s enough to get the win – and be the first ever New Wave champion. ***½
A strong showing from New Wave – and a card that put a LOT of new faces in front of me. There’s some who you can tell they’ve got big hopes for, particularly Ellis and Hooker, from their showcase singles matches here. Sure, the story of “guy goes the distance” might be a little played out after the WWE’s rumbles this year, but I liked the wrinkle of Ellis playing keepaway for the entire match – like an annoying fly buzzing around you for the day – while Mulligan stood out for the obvious reasons.