Osaka’s the venue for the latest part of the Best of the Super Junior as contenders continue to fall.
Satoshi Kojima & Tomoaki Honma pinned Gabriel Kidd & Yota Tsuji in 8:58 (**¾)
Best of the Super Junior 27 – DOUKI pinned Yuya Uemura in 12:54 (***½)
Best of the Super Junior 27 – Robbie Eagles submitted Ryusuke Taguchi in 13:03 (***½)
Best of the Super Junior 27 – BUSHI pinned Master Wato in 13:15 (***¼)
Best of the Super Junior 27 – El Desperado pinned Taiji Ishimori in 17:18 (***¾)
Best of the Super Junior 27 – SHO pinned Hiromu Takahashi in 24:53 (****¼)
We’re in Osaka for this one, complete with a warning banner about the venue’s internet. This may be fun…
Yota Tsuji & Gabriel Kidd vs. Satoshi Kojima & Tomoaki Honma
Kidd and Tsuji are teaming up for the remainder of the tour, looking to finally get the win they couldn’t get while teaming with Nagata…
Kidd’s already going for Kojima before the bell, but it’s Tsuji and Honma who start us off, with Honma working over the wrist early on, going from hold to hold as a side headlock and a takedown took Honma to the mat. Honma pushes away, but Tsuji’s back with a shoulder tackle, before Honma returned with one of his own.
Of course, Honma goes for a Kokeshi, but it misses, as Tsuji then tagged out to Kidd, who laid in with elbows before bringing Tsuji back in. A sidewalk slam drops Honma, with Tsuji then looking to roll him into a bow-and-arrow hold. Kidd’s back with uppercuts and elbows as the Young Lions were working to isolate Honma… but he comes back with a boot and a back elbow before he finally hit a Kokeshi to Tsuji.
Kojima tags in to go for Tsuji with the Machine Gun chops. Kidd tries to make the save, but gets some too, before he made the save as Kojima looked to go up top. A press slam from Tsuji takes down Kojima, as the Young Lion threw in a shoulder tackle for another two-count, then a dropkick for good measure.
Another tag brings Kidd back in for some elbows, trapping Kojima in the corner before he went for a brainbuster… eventually landing it too. A backdrop suplex is next for a near-fall, but Kojima blocks a double underhook suplex for long enough for Honma to break it up. Tsuji takes care of him with a spear, before a double dropkick left Kojima down for a Boston crab, with Kicc swivelling him away from the ropes as Tsuji tied up Honma in an ol’ fashioned stump puller.
Of course, Kojima makes it to the ropes, and after absorbing some more elbows, just waffled Kidd with a short-range lariat for the win. A familiar taste, and a familiar result for Kidd, who’s probably looking forward to being able to give those up for Lent next year… **¾
Best of the Super Junior 27 – Yuya Uemura vs. DOUKI
Someone’s 0 has got to go!
DOUKI tries to jump Uemura at the bell, but he’s charged down by the Young Lion, who tries his luck with a slam for a two-count early on. They quickly head outside, with DOUKI getting reversed into the guard rails, before Uemura hit a crossbody off of the apron. Uemura rolls him back inside for another two-count, but ends up getting hot shotted into the ropes as DOUKI took over.
They’re back outside, with Uemura properly moving the guard rails as he’s Irish whipped into them. That’s impressive but scary at the same time. DOUKI followed up with some pipe shots to the back, which leave Uemura laying… but he beats the count-out and rolls back inside. Uemura’s still on the defensive though as DOUKI puts the boots to him, following up with a slam and a running Goomba stomp to the gut for a two-count. An eye rake from DOUKI stops Uemura’s attempt at a comeback, as does a sidestep when Uemura went for a dropkick, but second time was the charm as DOUKI got taken down.
Uemura hits a running back elbow into the corner as elbows rained down on DOUKI. There’s a corner dropkick too for a near-fall, before the obligatory Boston crab left DOUKI scrambling for a rope break. DOUKI breaks free of a waistlock and hits an enziguiri to Uemura, then had to wheelbarrow him in for a pin as Uemura looked for a German suplex.
A lariat from DOUKI stops Uemura’s offence though, but a Daybreak DDT was caught as Uemura wangled his way into a release Kanuki suplex. Now we’re back to the Boston crab, but this time DOUKI couldn’t scramble quite as quickly, and instead needed to drag his way towards the ropes. Uemura pulls him away as they tease the stoppage, but eventually DOUKI gets there as Uemura tried in vain to switch the hold up.
DOUKI’s throat thrust looked to offer a way back in, before he countered a Kannuki suplex into the Italian Stretch #32, but Uemura’s able to flail a leg into the ropes. From there, DOUKI heads into the apron and springboards in for the Daybreak DDT, getting a near-fall from it, before he finally busted out Suplex de la Luna for the win. A cracker of a match from two who had long-since been eliminated – and one that just cements the praise both DOUKI and Uemura had been getting in this tour. ***½
Best of the Super Junior 27 – Robbie Eagles vs. Ryusuke Taguchi
Eagles is already out – and a loss would spell the end of Taguchi’s tournament too…
We open with a lock-up as Taguchi took Eagles to the ropes… and broke cleanly. A trip takes down Eagles as Taguchi looked to work the left leg early on, but Eagles countered out looking for a cross armbar, with Taguchi slipping out for a leg grapevine as he forces Eagles into the ropes.
A side headlock from Eagles restrains Taguchi, but Taguchi manages to get free as he started to land a series of hip attacks, including one in the corner. Eagles manages to counter a second into an atomic drop, following up with an elbow to the back of the head for a two-count, as the Aussie then began to work on Taguchi’s legs.
Eagles’ headlock on the mat turns into a chinlock as Taguchi tries to fight free, before a sunset flip from Taguchi saw him “feed” his tights to Eagles so he could sit down on the move. Robbie kicks out and dropkicks Taguchi to the outside, but his dive is aborted as he baits Taguchi in for a hip attack that traps him in the ropes… only for a 619 to the arse to help Taguchi get free. We buffer, and return with Taguchi sending Eagles back outside for a hip attack off the apron.
Taguchi keeps going with a springboard hip attack back inside for a two-count, before an attempt at the Three Amigos actually paid off, with all three suplexes landing for another two-count. An attempt at the Bummer-Ye’s stopped as Eagles went for a dropkick to the arse, but Taguchi leaps over it and rolled in for an ankle lock instead.
Eagles rolls out of that and takes Taguchi into the corner for some leaping double knees, then another double knee that led one person in the crowd to scream as Taguchi nearly got put away. Taguchi rolls away as Eagles was setting up for a 450 splash to the leg, but he just rolls into the other corner… prompting Eagles to again, only to get frustrated again.
When Eagles went towards Taguchi, he’s caught with an inside cradle before some kicks from Eagles left Taguchi down as the buffering began to hit. Eagles manages to land a springboard dropkick to the knee, taking down Taguchi, but the Ron Miller Special’s pushed off. A Turbo Backpack’s blocked as Taguchi looks for Dodon, only for the pair to go back-and-forth in a wheelbarrow roll-up, going around the ring until Taguchi gets a two-count.
From the kick-out, Taguchi rolls back into an ankle lock, before Eagles rolled through, trapping Taguchi in the Ron Miller Special, dragging him away from the ropes for the eventual submission. A really good performance from Eagles here, who managed to navigate the arse-offence to get a win. ***½
Best of the Super Junior 27 – BUSHI vs. Master Wato
We start this one with switching waistlocks as Wato and BUSHI hit a quick stand-off before we reached the kicking portion of Wato’s offence.
Kicks chop down BUSHI, forcing him to roll outside, where he avoids a plancha from Wato before a tope suicida knocked Wato into the guard rails. Irish whips take Wato into the guard rails, which seemed to be moving much freer than usual… either that or everyone’s putting a lot more into those whips.
BUSHI tries to get the count-out win, but Wato rolls back in just in time, only to get caught with a neckbreaker for a two-count. Some figure four headscissors keep Wato on the mat, forcing him to squirm to the ropes for the break… which BUSHI suddenly needs help in doing.
T-shirt choking is next from BUSHI, then a back suplex, which gets him a two-count, before Wato tried to come back in with some kicks. A mid kick takes BUSHI down off the ropes, while an elbow and a rear spin kick takes BUSHI outside for the tornillo crossbody, which the camera crew almost missed. Back inside, a springboard uppercut lands for a two-count, as Wato then tried for the Recientemente abdominal stretch driver… but BUSHI escapes and instead took a tiltawhirl backbreaker as Wato kicked his way to another two-count. A big dropkick from BUSHI took Wato into the ropes ahead of a Coast-to-Coast-ish dropkick and a see-saw DDT.
Wato blocks a Fisherman screw neckbreaker and hits a high kick to buy him some time, as the pair began to trade elbows strikes. A backfist from Wato knocks BUSHI down as Wato then looked for a Tenzan Tombstone Driver, before finding more luck with the Recientemente, almost winning the match with it. Heading up top, Wato crashes and burns on RPP, then got taken into the corner for a rope-hung back cracker from BUSHI. Wato blocks a lungblower, pushing away BUSHI for a head kick, before BUSHI rolled through on a powerbomb attempt for a near-fall. An enziguiri from BUSHI cracks Wato, as does a Codebreaker, getting a near-fall, before Wato dropkicks away a MX attempt.
Wato again goes for a head kick, but BUSHI ducks and hits a rewind enziguiri instead, setting up for a Destroyer… and then finished off Wato with the MX for the win. A solid mid-card outing here, but that result could end up being harmful in terms of Wato making the top two after that bright early start. ***¼
Best of the Super Junior 27 – El Desperado vs. Taiji Ishimori
It’s junior champion against a junior tag champion here, and for a change we’ve got a jump start, as Desperado threw a shirt at Ishimori, then took him outside with a dropkick. Why yes, they use the guard rails… why’d you ask?
Ishimori drops a F-bomb after getting thrown into the rails, as they eventually head back inside, where Desperado taunted Ishimori with his title belt. Some misdirection helps Ishimori get back in with a springboard seated senton, before he took Desperado outside, with Despy taking the guard rails like Bret Hart took turnbuckles back in the day.
He switched it up after that first one, as Ishimori took control back in the ring, working over Desperado’s arm with knee drops, elbows and arm bars. Ishimori exacerbates that by throwing Ishimori into the turnbuckles, before a sunset flip attempt gets countered… but Ishimori goes from near-falls into a levering armbar as he wrenched down on Desperado’s arm.
A low dropkick from Desperado looked to offer a way back in, but Ishimori leaps over it and countered back with a neck twist, only for Desperado to return with a spinebuster moments later. That low dropkick connects in the corner as Desperado followed with a Dragon screw, then with Numero Dos as Ishimori scarpered into the ropes to force a break. Desperado looks for Guitarra de Angel, but it’s blocked… so he switches back into Numero Dos as Ishimori eventually powered out into a crossface that ended in the ropes. Ishimori keeps going with a shoulder breaker, again targeting that left arm, before running in with a Mistica that helped take Desperado into a Yes lock.
Somehow Desperado rolls out and manages to transition it into a Numero Dos, but again, it ends in the ropes. The pair begin to trade elbows as they fought on their knees, before Desperado looked for Guitarra de Angel. That’s eventually landed as they counter, counter and counter, but it’s not enough to get the win.
Headscissors from Ishimori and a Cipher UTAKI drop Desperado, before a Bloody Cross was countered as Desperado charged Ishimori into the referee. A low dropkick stops Ishimori, as Desperado then went to hit Ishimori with his own title belt… but a leaping knee stops that before Ishimori went to do it himself. The referee gets up to stop that, and misses a low blow from Desperado, as Piche Loco then puts away the junior champion. On paper, that’d have to be an upset, as a pretty solid match ended with a shortcut… just because! ***¾
Best of the Super Junior 27 – SHO vs. Hiromu Takahashi
SHO came into this with a taped-up neck, and we start out hot with both men charging into each other with shoulder tackles at the bell.
Clotheslines in the ropes follow as they keep the hot start going, before duelling clotheslines in the middle of the ring staggered the pair. Hiromu gets lifted onto the apron, but avoids a low dropkick of it as he then tried to catch out SHO with a sunset bomb – but that too is countered as SHO went for a cross armbreaker on the apron, before a PK knocked Hiromu down.
Hiromu hurls SHO into the guard rails, but SHO bounced back with a clothesline… only to get taken back into the rails with another Irish whip and a dropkick. Hiromu uses SHO to break the count, then pulls him back outside to try and break those guard rails, which leaves SHO screaming in agony on the floor. We finally head back inside as SHO gets chopped and clotheslined in the corner, with a low dropkick leaving SHO down for some Figure Four headscissors, which end in the ropes. SHO gets back to his feet and fires off some elbows, but Hiromu replies in kind before SHO tried to muscle him up for a suplex… and ends up getting elbowed again.
SHO’s misdirection catches out Hiromu, with a spear taking down the former junior champion, as kicks continued to wear down Hiromu from there. Arm breakers followed from SHO, but Hiromu leaps in for a rear naked choke to stop the momentum… only for SHO to throw him down as a cross armbreaker quickly ended in the ropes.
A waistlock from SHO looked to lead to a German suplex, but he instead opts for a leaping knee before Hiromu came back in with a wheelbarrow’d Flatliner instead. Hiromu comes back out of the corner with a clothesline, before hurling SHO into the corner with an overhead belly-to-belly. The Dynamite Plunger followed for a two-count on SHO, before a corner death valley driver looked to signal that Hiromu was on his way to a fairly quick victory. SHO finds a way back in with an elbow, but he took too long to follow up and got superkicked… quickly recovering to catch Hiromu with a rebound German suplex off the ropes.
SHO adds some deadlift German suplexes from there, rolling it into a cross armbreaker. The ropes save Hiromu, as he ends up getting pelted with elbows and clotheslines… he recovers with a clothesline of his own before he low bridges SHO to the outside, setting up for a sunset bomb that eventually pulled SHO down to the floor.
Hiromu’s able to roll back inside, while SHO barely beat the count, as we go back to elbows between the pair of them, SHO knocks Hiromu to his knees, then hit the ropes for a clothesline, but it’s switched into some headscissors as Hiromu pulls SHO into the D. SHO pulls up though and powerbombs Hiromu into the corner… but Hiromu tries to respond with a Time Bomb, only for SHO to slip out into a key lock.
Hiromu breaks the hold and elbows SHO, but a tiltawhirl slam is countered as SHO reapplied the key lock once more. They roll into the middle of the ring as Hiromu tries to power out with a death valley driver into the corner, but SHO keeps tight hold of the arm, eventually forcing Hiromu to drag himself to the ropes for the break.
From there, SHO lifts up Hiromu for a Power Breaker, which gets a two-count, before a Shock Arrow was countered out… but SHO escaped Time Bomb 2, only to get caught with a German suplex. A lariat from Hiromu only gets a one-count, as did one from SHO, before Hiromu shook off the cobwebs to hit a powerbomb and Victory Royal for a two-count.
Another crack at the Time Bomb’s countered out into a back cracker as SHO tried to build anew… he followed up with a lariat in the ropes, then one to the back, before a third one dropped Hiromu. A cross-armed piledriver followed for a two-count, before SHO polished off the former champion with the Shock Arrow for the win. A fantastic main event, with SHO and Hiromu giving it their all – but at the end of the day Hiromu’s got to wait a little longer to book his spot in the final, as SHO made it a four-way tie at the top. Stick this one in your notebooks! ****¼
World Tag League 2020
Tomohiro Ishii & Toru Yano (5-2; 10pts)
Great-O-Khan & Jeff Cobb; Hirooki Goto & YOSHI-HASHI; Juice Robinson & David Finlay; SANADA & Shingo Takagi; Taichi & Zack Sabre Jr.; Tama Tonga & Tanga Loa (4-3; 8pts)
EVIL & Yujiro Takahashi (3-4; 6pts)
Bad Luck Fale & Chase Owens (2-5; 4pts)
Toa Henare & Hiroshi Tanahashi (1-6; 2pts) * eliminated
Best of the Super Junior 27
El Desperado, Taiji Ishimori, SHO, Hiromu Takahashi (5-2; 10pts)
BUSHI, Master Wato (4-3; 8pts)
Robbie Eagles, Ryusuke Taguchi (3-4; 6pts) * eliminated
DOUKI (1-6; 2pts) * eliminated
Yuya Uemura (0-7; 0pts) * eliminated
We’re back on Friday for the final stretch of the tour, as Oita hosts the penultimate round of the World Tag League matches, with Hiroshi Tanahashi & Toa Henare taking on SANADA & Shingo Takagi in a top versus bottom outing.
This was another good show from the Best of the Super Junior side of the tour, as things are entering the home stretch, with us realistically looking at two from the current top four to make next the finals next week.