Kochi’s the latest host as the World Tag League begins to wind down with a pair of matches a day!
The venue in Kochi rather looks like a school hall – not helped by the video projector on the stage…
World Tag League 2017 – Block A: Bullet Club (Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens) vs. Death Juice (Sami Callihan & Juice Robinson)
Fale’s getting ever closer to chasing the ring announcer away… this time he stepped out of the ropes as he teased murder.
Speaking of murder, Sami slaps the taste out of Chase’s mouth in the opening salvo, as Death Juice threatened to work over Owens’ arm in the early going. Juice and Chase had a nice back-and-forth, helped when Callihan rushes in to deliver a boot in a side Russian legsweep… but his attempt to jump off of Juice’s back ends when Fale sweeps the leg. Fale stays in and works over Juice, sitting on him for a two-count, before flattening him on the outside after Chase almost lost the advantage they’d built up.
Back inside, a sweet slingshot into a back suplex gets Owens a near-fall, but Juice manages to break free, eventually giving Chase a back body drop before bringing in Sami… who ducks a superkick from Owens, and knocked Chase to the outside. More kicks follow as Fale recovers from that accidental superkick, but not in enough time to make a save as Owens has to kick out from a right hand shot.
Death Juice worked together to keep pounding away on Chase, with a cannonball from Juice getting followed up by a sit-out powerbomb from Callihan. From the kick-out, he goes to the Stretch Muffler as Fale eventually breaks it up, only to get clotheslines to the outside. Juice and Sami keep targeting Fale, but they forget about Owens… and as Sami goes for a dive, Owens comes to life and just rolls up Callihan for the win. The hell was that?! A flash finish brings this match to an end, but my God the pace felt glacial at times. **
World Tag League 2017 – Block A: Los Ingobernables de Japon (EVIL & SANADA) vs. Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan
The Ingobernables tried to start on the front-foot by jumping Kojima, but we’ve got a lot of back-and-forth instead as we eventually head outside for those obligatory crowd barrier spots.
EVIL & SANADA corner Tenzan for a spell, before a low dropkick cuts off whatever plans Tenzan had of a comeback. We’re back to double-teaming as EVIL gets a solid two-count out of a back senton, but Kojima gets the tag in and quickly lights up LIJ with machine gun chops.
A Koji Cutter has EVIL scurrying to the corner, where EVIL’s lifted up for another one off the middle rope… but it’s still only good for a near-fall as EVIL fires back, superkicking Kojima in the gut after some inadvertent help from the referee. SANADA takes advantage and ties Kojima in a Paradise lock, but the Bread Lover manages to get some freedom and a tag out to Tenzan, who quickly goes after SANADA with Mongolian chops. As he does.
SANADA cuts off Tenzan with a dropkick after taking a headbutt to the gut, but a Mountain bomb keeps the tide a-turning, as Tenzan’s Anaconda Vice almost forces a submission, only for EVIL to hit the ring and break it up. Tenzan tries again with a Side Effect, but SANADA kicks out at two before a TenKoji cutter led to another near-fall when EVIL pulled out the ref.
With no official, we get EVIL chairshots, with one popping out the chair seat on the head of Kojima… but Tenzan recovers and nearly beats SANADA with a teardrop suplex. An attempted moonsault’s blocked when EVIL grabs a leg, helping SANADA with a powerbomb for a near-fall, before LIJ segue into a Magic Killer for the win. This was much better paced than most tournament matches, and all the more enjoyable for it. ***
After having a match more than half of the group Los Ingobernables have gone from bottom of the group to leading it – with their last match being on Friday against Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI – a potential decider in Hiroshima!
EVIL & SANADA (4-2; 8pts)
Hangman Page & Yujiro Takahashi; Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI; Minoru Suzuki & Takashi Iizuka (3-2; 6pts)
Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens; Juice Robinson & Sami Callihan (3-3; 6pts)
Satoshi Kojima & Hiroyoshi Tenzan (2-4; 4pts)
Manabu Nakanishi & Yuji Nagata (1-4; 2pts)
Beretta & Chuckie T; Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa (4-1; 8pts)
Davey Boy Smith Jr. & Lance Archer; Hanson & Raymond Rowe; Jeff Cobb & Michael Elgin; Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano (3-2; 6pts)
Henare & Togi Makabe; Katsuya Kitamura & David Finlay (0-5; 0pts)
Monday was another day off, so the World Tag League resumes in Oita with a pair of matches out of block B… we’ll be covering those when they go up as we prepare for a run of live shows to wrap up the tournament.