We’re back for another week’s NXT UK, as Flash Morgan Webster takes on A-Kid in the opening round of the Heritage Cup.
Xia Brookside & Dani Luna pinned Amale & Nina Samuels in 7:11 (**½)
Saxon Huxley pinned Jack Starz in 5:16 (*¾)
Heritage Cup Quarter Final: A-Kid beat Flash Morgan Webster by 2 rounds to 1 (2:55 of round 5) (***)
It’s another week inside the BT Sport Studios in London, with Andy Shepherd and Nigel McGuinness around for commentary.
Xia Brookside & Dani Luna vs. Nina Samuels & Amale
Hey, this isn’t on second?! It’s a second week in a row for Xia – and a “proper” debut for Amale. I mean, she at least got to the aisle before her tag partner’s music hit, I guess…
Samuels and Luna start us off, with Nina being taken to ground with a pair of waistlock takedowns, but she’s back with an armbar on Luna, who escapes and tags in Brookside, who gets a headlock takedown in. Nina rolls her up for a one-count, but can’t shift the headlock, as she then went to headscissors on the mat that Xia rolled out of.
Luna’s back in, but Samuels made the tag out to Amale, who clubs her down before some elbows and a cravat kept the Londoner at bay. A snapmare and a PK gets Amale a pinning attempt, as she then tagged in Samuels for some double-teaming that backfired when they ate a double clothesline from Luna for a near-fall. Brookside tags back in to land a crossbody for a two-count, then some headscissors to take Nina into the corner. Nina retaliates with a tiltawhirl backbreaker before a handspring kick knocked Luna off the apron. Xia tries to snatch a roll-up, but Nina kicks out as Luna hit the ring to get herself some payback.
Of course that distracts the ref as Amale got involved, before an inverted suplex for Samuels a near-fall. A blind tag brings Amale back in, but Nina didn’t feel the tag, nor hear the referee scream tag as she went for a roll-up… and looked put out by it all. Amale grounds Brookside with figure four headscissors, driving Xia’s head into the mat. Xia dives out to tag Luna back in, and she goes wild with slams on Amale before a clothesline left the French woman down. A suplex followed for a two-count, as the subtlety hammer came in as Nina was far from impressed with what she’d seen. She then drops off the apron and left Amale behind, walking to the back as Luna looked to get the win with a roll-up.
Amale fights back with elbows, but gets dumped with a German suplex as Xia Brookside tagged in to hit a Brooksie Bomb – the Iconoclasm – for the win. I mean, I guess it’s a storyline, but man, it’s a little basic, no? **½
Backstage, Ilja Dragunov is quizzed but he’s on the prowl for the Assistant to the Regional Manager. Ilja wants a real fight with Wolfe and WALTER next week… and demands to team with Pete Dunne. They dub in golf claps for that.
Earlier tonight, Piper Niven walks by our unnamed interviewer and is asked about what Kay Lee Ray’s going to say tonight. She feigns interest.
Jack Starz vs. Saxon Huxley
This all came up as a result of Starz offering words of encouragement to Saxon after that match with WALTER. If this were TEW, there’d be a note about how Saxon debuted a new gimmick, and to be fair he looked pretty decent in it, going full Bruiser Brody with the wild hair and beard.
Starz tries for a waistlock at the bell, but gets thrown aside as he looked to avoid the Hartlepool native. Monkey Hanger, they’re called. At least, the fans of their football team. Huxley works Starz’s arm, lifting him up a la Jim Breaks, before pulling him into a shoulder tackle. Wash, rinse, repeat, but this time Starz gets free and hits back with dropkicks. They’re eventually evaded as Starz gets press slammed to the mat, then Beeled across the ring, as Huxley continued to dominate. Irish whips bounce Starz into the corners, before a splash squashes Starz before Huxley cranked the neck.
Starz fights free, but he’s quickly pulled up into a torture rack. He escapes it though, then sidestepped a charge in the corner as he came back with a dropkick to the hip. A diving crossbody catches Huxley for a one-count, but Huxley eventually cuts him off before Stars wriggled onto the apron. A springboard crossbody’s caught by Huxley, who then bounces him into the corner and spins him up for an inverted version of the Big Ending for the win. A decent outing for Saxon, but did this need to be a competitive squash when you’re reinventing Huxley?! I mean if you want to protect Jack, there’s an entire country of wrestlers who are out of work right now and could have been called upon… *¾
We’ve a video package on Gallus winning the tag team titles almost a year ago, which then bleeds to clips on Mark Coffey and Wolfgang’s history in ICW. Interesting how they’re crediting the specific ICW events, rather than just ICW. In case you wanna catch them on the Network one day, I guess. You know the score, Gallus Boys On Top.
Earlier tonight Pretty Deadly bump into the interviewer. They’re keeping Kirsty busy tonight, eh? She asks them what Eddie Dennis spoke to them about, but of course they blew her off. There’s more from Kirsty too, as we cut to her elsewhere “earlier tonight” as she bumps into Xia and Dani to ask about the Kay Lee Ray speech.
Heritage Cup Quarter-Final: Flash Morgan Webster vs. A-Kid
Winner faces Noam Dar in the semis…
Round 1: We open with a handshake as A-Kid had to defend an armbar early on, rolling away from Webster. An side headlock from A-Kid is rolled up on for a bunch of one-counts, before they fought to their feet, with Webster wrestling A-Kid down in a wristlock. A neck bridge is broken, but we reset with Webster tripping A-Kid, before they fought to their feet… Webster sends A-Kid sailing outside as time runs out.
Round 2: A-Kid’s back in the ring as the second round starts, and this time it’s the Spaniard who gets the trip. A counter’s blocked as A-Kid gets Webster’s back ahead of a bow-and-arrow hold, but the escape leads to a quick cover as Webster got a one-count. Flash is back with a wristlock, but A-Kid ups up away from it… only to be taken back down into an armbar. They get a little flashy as A-Kid goes for a standing moonsault, before some back-and-forth roll-ups led to Flash pinning A-Kid at 1:59 of the second round to go 1-0 up.
Round 3: We resume with A-Kid staring a hole through Webster, before taking him to the corner for a clean break. A-Kid works an armbar as the pace slows, but Webster counters out into a wristlock only for A-Kid to flip free and whip Webster to the mat by his historically-injured arm. A-Kid flips out of the corner as he headed up top for a crossbody for a near-fall, before a Fisherman suplex led to another two-count. Webster’s back with a Rude Boy block out of the corner, then set up for a something… but A-Kid rolls him up for a near-fall. A poison ‘rana from Flash lands, but time runs out as Flash stays 1-0 up.
Round 4: The bell sounds, Flash blasts A-Kid with a leaping knee for a near-fall as somehow A-Kid got up. Flash heads up top, but gets caught with a gamengiri before a Spanish Fly off the top had me thinking about how he won Ambition two years ago. A superkick levels it up at 0:47 seconds of the fourth round.
Round 5: A-Kid slaps Webster at the bell with palm strikes, then kicked his leg out. Webster slaps back, but gets hammerlocked for some body blows… only to come back with a Falcon arrow for a near-fall. Flash tries to dive in with shots, but almost got caught with an omoplata. He frees himself, but gets caught with an up-kick from A-Kid, before a sleeperhold from Flash was blocked. A headbutt drops A-Kid, but Flash collapses as A-Kid tried to cut-off a springboard… he sends himself outside as Flash followed with a low-pe, before they returned to the ring. Flash misses a Shadows over Malice senton, with A-Kid rolling in for a cross armbar that transitioned into an omoplata as Flash submitted with five seconds left. A good match, but the rounds system is really killing the flow of these matches. ***
The past does come into play when it comes to this style, but when it’s not the prevailing style of the company (nor indeed, the roster currently on hand), it feels like a forced meshing of styles that can be very disparate. If you’ve seen the AWF episode of Wrestling With Wregret, you’ll know what I mean…
Backstage, Kay Lee Ray is getting ready for her State of the Union address. Surprisingly there’s nobody around to ask her something before she appears.
They announce that in three weeks: Ilja Dragunov takes on WALTER for the NXT UK Championship. We then get a montage of how Ilja won that title shot earlier this year, with interviews from the time and since… WALTER again accuses Ilja of being someone who’s “driven by emotion,” while his mind is “cold.” WALTER calls this the greatest fight of Ilja’s life, and going by their past matches, I have no doubt that this match should be an absolute stormer. Please don’t over-think this…
During the break, Mark Andrews was being interviewed… but hes; called away by Primate. They sprint backstage as Flash Morgan Webster’s in a heap on the floor. In the background you can see Eddie Dennis at the top of the stairs, which they did well to not call out… unlike the similarities to what happened to Mark. Next week: Dave Mastiff vs. Joseph Conners in the Heritage Cup… plus WALTER & Alexander Wolfe vs. Ilja Dragunov & Pete Dunne.
Main Event Kay Lee Ray’s out next for her State of the Union deal. She’s crowing about beating Piper Niven when everyone thought she’d lose. Her record breaking title reign continues to grow, despite everything… and out marches some of the women’s roster. Nina Samuels, Isla Dawn, Aoife Valkyrie Xia Brookside and Dani Luna are first, then Amale… but she’s here to get into it with Nina Samuels as Kay Lee Ray chatted away. Piper Niven’s out next, shoving those two aside… but Amale and Samuels attack her as the rest of the women at ringside surround Kay Lee Ray. It’s telling that Jinny isn’t out for this, as Amale and Nina have their own little scrap, while Kay Lee Ray skulked away.
Oh, there’s Jinny. As everyone else is preoccupied with each other, Jinny nails Kay Lee with a forearm as they fight around the studio. Kay Lee breaks a laptop over Jinny’s back, but Jinny throws her into more (conveniently-switched-off) equipment. The brawling continues until Isla Dawn’s knocked outside the ring with a leg lariat from Aoife Valkyrie, who then dove into the pile with a crossbody, leaving everyone down as Kay Lee Ray smirked and left to her music. O-kay?
While the Heritage Cup continues to feel like a square peg in a round hole, at least the match they had this week was half decent. What they’re doing with the remainder of the roster feels weird – with an obvious lack of depth in several places, repackaging Saxon Huxley but having him in the same spot is certainly a choice, as was whatever that main event segment was.