The go-home show for Brixton, PROGRESS presented a packed show – perhaps too packed – as they slotted all the pieces into place.
#TLDR: Marty Scurll and Mark Andrews fought it out in the main event to book their place as champion at PROGRESS’ latest biggest-show-ever, on a card that featured an aerial thriller between Will Ospreay and Shane Strickland, and more action to complete the Brixton line-up.
The Full Review: Camden’s Electric Ballroom was the venue on August Bank Holiday… and to think, I turned down going to this show and instead ended up with having a tooth knocked out instead! Great decision making from yours truly!
Jim Smallman starts off by getting the crowd to sing happy birthday to a fan in the crowd… and even the miserable Will Ospreay hater cracks a smile!
Glen Joseph is running solo on commentary, but with a revolving door of guest commentators… starting out in the form of the London Riots.
Tyler Bate & Damian Dunne vs. British Strong Style (Trent Seven & Pete Dunne)
Tyler and Damian, of course, were teaming for the first time after their partners left them last time in Camden and formed their own tag team. It doesn’t seem that Damian’s turned face, so this is an awkward pairing to say the least. British Strong Style have some decent music, and t-shirts that you probably couldn’t get away with wearing outside of a wrestling show… they also had a bit of a staredown with the London Riots during their entrance, which may be foreboding.
Tyler Bate jumps Trent Seven in the aisle, and we start on the floor, as Damian dumps Seven with a tornado DDT, before Pete grabs Tyler’s nose. The pair swap the boo/yay punches, before Pete dumps Tyler with a release suplex onto the apron. Damian ducks a chop as Seven chops the ringpost, but quickly recovers to powerbomb Damian onto the edge of the apron.
Pete Dunne tries for a piledriver on the apron, but Tyler hooks the rope with his leg, before the pair go into a slapping battle, before an European uppercut knocks Pete off the apron to the floor. Bate follows up with a moonsault press to Trent and Pete on the floor, and finally the bell goes as Bate throws Pete into the ring, and he ends up getting his fingers bitten. Damian Dunne runs in with a spear to Pete, but has a tornado DDT blocked as Seven turns it into a brainbuster.
We get the Bate/Seven face-off, and Trent invites the first shot, but he sucker punches Bate with a forearm instead. More boo/yay punches, before the Dunnes enter, and they both end up getting caught in a Boston crab, as the current/former Mustache Mountain partners keep on slapping whilst holding the Dunnes in single-leg crabs.
Pete lands the Drop Head on Damian, before tagging in Seven, as Bate gets squashed in he corner with chops, and kicks, before a German suplex from Seven leads to a piledriver from the bearded one for a near-fall. Damian returns and dumps Pete with a springboard into a Codebreaker, before Seven gets a rope-assisted DDT. Pete lands a forearm as Damian went for a springboard something into Seven, before being taken to the floor and was dumped with a tombstone on the outside.
In the ring, Bate punches Seven, but he gets cut-off by Pete, who then takes a series of punches from Bate. A lariat from Bate turns Pete inside out, before Bate takes a Dragon suplex from his former/current tag team partner Seven… and pops right back up! Bate connects with a pair of headbutts, but falls into a discus chop, then a powerbomb from Seven, who quickly rolls over into a single-leg crab that forces Bate to tap. A fun match that started as a wild brawl, but broke into some technical action.
As much as I hated the set-up, I quite like the British Strong Style pairing… now can we keep Bate and Seven away from each other? Especially if they’re continuing to team elsewhere in the wrestling world? ***½
Post-match, Seven and Dunne make a beeline for the stage and get into a staredown with the London Riots. Glen Joseph is even foaming at the mouth as he’s spitting mad, and both teams eventually calm down and head to the back, but not before the Riots shake the hands of Tyler and Damian. We then get the Tyler Bate/Damian Dunne handshake, and I have a feeling that’s a face-turn complete?
Throughout the show, Jim Smallman checks in with a pair of mums who were brought to the show – and in the front row, of all places!
Alex Windsor vs. Nixon Newell
Both women here are making their PROGRESS debuts, and in the case of Nixon, it’s about damned time! We reviewed the match these two had for VII Pro back in July, and it wasn’t too bad… just, really short. Newell’s really over for a debutant, and gets 700 people in Camden singing along to B*Witched’s “C’est La Vie”.
Windsor takes Newell into the corner early on, as Jinny joins Glen Joseph on commentary. I’m getting ENDVR flashbacks here! Newell takes Windsor down to the mat with a front facelock, before it gets reversed, and Newell ends up getting a backslide for a two-count. A series of hiptosses takes Windsor down, before a dropkick sends her to the floor, but Windsor returns to avoid a dive, before catching some tiltawhirl headscissors into a backbreaker for a one-count.
Windsor nails a kick to the back of Newell, then a low dropkick for a two-count, before she takes Newell into the corner for some punches. An Irish whip into the corner sends Newell to the mat, but Nixon fires back with a dropkick into the opposite corner, then a series of running forearms keeps her there. Newell misses a third forearm, but slides out of the ring and lands an overhead kick from the apron.
A top rope crossbody gets a near-fall, before Newell cracks into Windsor with a shining wizard that sent the Norwich-born Windsor to the outside. Newell tries for a tope, but Windsor cuts her off, and they end up on the floor again, before Windsor’s Irish whipped into the ringpost. Newell breaks the count, and runs on the apron with a PK to Windsor’s chest, before a second one misses, giving Windsor a chance to sweep the leg.
Windsor throws Newell back in, but she takes her time in following her, so Newell counters with a tope to the outside. A headbutt is followed by a tornado DDT as Newell crashes into the floor, but she just about beats the ten-count back into the ring. The two women trade forearm strikes whilst on their knees, before they butt heads, ending with Windsor kicking Newell to the mat, and following up with a PK for a near-fall.
Newell ducks a second PK, then rolls up Windsor for a two-count, before returning with a roundhouse kick for another near-fall. Windsor headbutted her way out of a double chicken wing, before going for a Sharpshooter. Newell pushed free, then connected with the Nos Da (Tiger suplex) on Windsor for the win. A fun debut from both women, and hopefully both of these can become an integral part of the upcoming Women’s title tournament. ***½
El Ligero vs. Zack Gibson vs. Eddie Dennis vs. Jack Gallagher
Well, this continues the streak of good milestone matches, as this is the 1,200th match of the year (on this site)… and it includes the PROGRESS Heat Magnet. Ligero and Gibson come out together, with Dave Mastiff in tow, and it seems that the Bastard is going on commentary for this one. There’s a LOT of fans in the crowd who seem to be WrestleCrate subscribers, judging by the t-shirts…
Ligero gets his customised entrance, from his little red book, which includes gems like “he’s performed on 72 different holiday camp shows this week, three of them he built himself to kill some time” and “if anyone in a wheelchair tries to get involved in his match, he’ll have them clamped”. Zack Gibson’s intro starts as normal, to thunderous boos as Gallagher and Dennis head to the bar… and join in the boos as well! Gibson gives up and goes to the back, then returns with a megaphone. Okay, this freaking rules! Ligero holds the microphone in front of it, yet the crowd still find a way to drown it out. BEST. GIMMICK. EVER.
Dennis and Gallagher get tossed out of the ring early on by the Origin pair, who then stare each other down to curious chants of “sexual tension”. Dave Mastiff launches into chants of “both these guys” and “fight forever” on commentary, as I contemplate whether trolling the crowd on commentary is a better act than the Gibson/megaphone deal. Ligero and Gibson so the phoney “soft-touch” spots, but they get cut-off by Dennis and Gallagher’s dropkicks.
Stalling suplexes follow, but Dennis loses Gibson… as Gallagher shows him up by keeping Ligero up… and they then swap over, with Dennis asking Gallagher to “spot him”, before the Extraordinary Gentleman goes back to Gibson, and both of the Origin take the stalling suplex to the mat.
Dennis grabs a headlock, and gets booed for it, as the two faces grapple, only for Gibson to cut-off Gallagher as he’d gone for a corner dropkick on Dennis. That leads to Gibson and Dennis being sent into the middle rope, as Eddie Dennis goes for the 619, only for the Origin to catch him in the ropes and knock him to the outside.
The numbers game overwhelms Gallagher as he went for a Boston crab, and it was two-on-one for a while as the Origin flitted between taking out Dennis, then Gallagher. The faces get their noses hooked for a while, then we got some chinlocks, with Dennis breaking one with a jawbreaker, before Gibson released his, and ended up taking a crossbody from Gallagher.
Ligero ringposts Gallagher as he went for the corner dropkick again, but the Origin got flattened with a double-team clothesline from Dennis. Gibson drops Eddie with an enziguiri, before we get the Samoan drop/fallaway slam combo on the heels. Gibson tried for a schoolboy, but he rolled through into the Shankly Gates, which Dennis countered into a Next Stop Driver for a near-fall.
Ligero breaks up the cover, which only seems to rile Dennis, who just bumps Ligero into the mat with a shoulder tackle. A Next Stop Driver’s blocked, and Ligero lands the C4L, but Zack Gibson breaks up the cover by diving onto the referee. Cue dissension between the Origin pair, and in comes Jack Gallagher to tie up Ligero in a ball, then Gibson, and from a certain camera angle, that looks very suggestive!
Ligero drops Gallagher with a superkick after he took a kick up the arse, before he distracted the referee… which gave Gibson a chance to go under the ring, and hey! That’s my car stereo! Gibson gets dropped with a corner dropkick, then Gallagher catches Ligero in a single-leg crab… and there’s the win! As a match, this was a bit farcical at times, but the spectacle surrounding it, as well as Dave Mastiff’s commentary, added a lot. Good showing from the Origin in defeat here. ***¼
Post-match, Mastiff went to the ring and distracted Dennis and Gallagher, letting Gibson use the car stereo on the winning team. Cue “there’s my car stereo” chants, and Gibson locks in the Shankly Gates on Gallagher. Jim Smallman interrupts, and tells Mastiff that his match has been pushed up the card… and whilst Eddie Dennis and Jack Gallagher are tended to, we go to the next match!
Atlas Championship Tournament, Semi-Final: Dave Mastiff vs. Joe Coffey
The winner of this match goes to the tournament final in Brixton later this month… and Coffey starts by dropkicking Mastiff into the corner, as Glen Joseph’s latest guest on commentary is Mikey Whiplash.
Coffey fakes out a dive as the referee orders Ligero and Gibson to the back, after they’d defied Jim Smallman’s orders to go to the back. They finally disappear, as Mastiff takes a tope from the Scotsman, and back in the ring he nails Mastiff with an uppercut, before being low bridged to the outside. Mastiff shoves Coffey into the ringpost, then gets tossed back in, before Coffey pops up from a series of bodyslams.
Mastiff squashes Coffey with a Finlay roll for a near-fall, and then sends him into the turnbuckles hard with an Irish whip. The crowd chant “Brian Blessed” at Mastiff bizarrely, who misses a back senton onto Coffey, and instead backs up into the corner to block a German suplex. Coffey tries to rush at Mastiff, but he’s back dropped onto the apron so hard that Coffey lost his footing and crashed onto the floor.
Back inside, Mastiff lifts Coffey onto the top rope, but Coffey fights out of a superplex, and connects with a missile dropkick instead. Mikey Whiplash on commentary suggests that that broke the ring, and it certainly does look like the boards under the ring shifted somewhat. A series of avalanches squash Mastiff, before Coffey nails a crossbody off the top for a near-fall.
Mastiff gets a boot up to block a rolling elbow, before an uppercut knocks down a second crossbody attempt. The back senton gets Mastiff a two-count, who rolls Coffey into a Boston crab, but he makes the ropes with relative ease. Coffey gets tied up in the ropes, then yanked back into the ring for an awkward bump, before Mastiff misses a cannonball in the corner. From there, Coffey drills Mastiff with a German suplex, then scores a discus lariat for the win. More fun big lads wrestling, and yet another loss for the Origin squad. ***½
Shane Strickland vs. Will Ospreay
Ospreay flashes the Triple Threat hand signal during his entrance, y’know, for those British Triangle Championships that’ll probably never make a PROGRESS show?
Ospreay starts with a shoulder tackle, and then some flippy avoiding, and finally duelling dropkicks as Glen Joseph takes my route and waves his hands up in the face of trying to call this! From a handshake, Strickland shoulder tackles Ospreay, and this leads to more flippy stuff, ending with some headscissors that Ospreay takes, before using the ropes to land on his feet.
A slingshot headscissors into the ring from Strickland gets flipped out of by Ospreay, who replies with a dropkick to send him to the outside, and then a fake-out from a dive… leads to Will getting thrown out and another fake-out. Ospreay kicks Strickland in the midsection, then declares “no flips”, instead opting to take Strickland into the corner for some chops and a forearm.
Strickland lands an impressive slingshot through the middle ropes into a Flatliner for a near-fall, before a back breaker across the shoulder takes Ospreay down again. A tiltawhirl backbreaker keeps Will down, before a leaping back kick knocks him loopy, but a double-knee press gets Shane a near-fall.
Ospreay makes a comeback with a handspring roundhouse kick off the ropes, before a running chop and as slingshot back suplex and a slingshot senton firmly turns the tables in the Brit’s favour. Strickland blocks a suplex, but falls to a floatover suplex at the second attempt, and then ducks a Rainmaker. Another back kick sends Ospreay to the outside, but Strickland doesn’t go for a dive, and instead drags Will back onto the apron, and clocks him with a forearm.
Ospreay backflips off the apron and onto the floor to avoid a dive, then leaps up to the apron, and the middle rope for a corkscrew Asai moonsault onto Strickland on the outside. That was nuts!
Will throws Strickland back into the ring, and connects with the flying forearm, and then a standing shooting star press and a corkscrew splash off the middle rope for a near-fall. Ospreay then targets Strickland’s legs with some kicks, to a smattering of boos, before Shane catches a kick and slaps Will away. Some forearms from Ospreay follow, until a pump kick ends some rope running, and a reverse leapfrog is caught by Strickland, who eventually got Ospreay in an electric chair position. A wheelbarrow roll-up is blocked by Will, as Shane holds on, and instead dumps Ospreay into the turnbuckles with a wheelbarrow suplex. That looked nasty.
Ospreay pops back with the Cheeky Nando’s kick, before a knee to the face blocks a Rainmaker. Will headbutts Strickland, but takes an enziguiri, before he’s properly dumped on his neck with a half-nelson suplex, which is ignored as Ospreay pops up for a one-man Spanish Fly. Erm, selling, chaps? They drop down after that Spanish Fly, thankfully, which seemed to be more effective than landing on your head…
Strickland throws his hands up in disgust as the crowd does the “count ahead of the ref and shout “Moose!”” gimmick. Perhaps not, but it was certainly good timing… and once both men were back up, they went to forearm strikes. Ospreay segued into some Kobashi-like rapid chops, before a boot knocked down Strickland, and led to a springboard 450 splash that gets him a near-fall.
Ospreay rolls to the floor, selling his shoulder, as Glen Joseph abandons the commentary position so he and Jim Smallman can tend to him. Strickland sits in the corner, as Ospreay pulls himself to his feet and back into the ring. But he was playing possum, as he suckered Strickland into a roundhouse kick, following up with a diving corkscrew kick – to a loud chorus of boos – before landing a corkscrew shooting star press… only for Strickland to kick out at two to a thunderous cheer.
The crowd turn on Ospreay for that attempted bit of cheating, and he goes all Paul Robinson on Strickland, stomping away at him and landing some mounted punches. Ospreay goes for an OsCutter out of the corner, but Strickland lands on his feet and and flips off Will. A massive PK-style kick to the head knocks Will back to his feet somehow, before Strickland avoids another Cheeky Nando’s, and lands a flying knee after hooking up Ospreay in the ropes.
Strickland goes up top for a double stomp to the face, but that only gets a two-count. Another knee, then a half-nelson into a wheelbarrow driver gets the win. Holy hell, that was good. No surprise, I wasn’t enamoured by the fake injury stuff, but it sure is interesting seeing Will Ospreay and Zack Sabre Jr. having their home crowds turn on them in in the same month! ****
A disconsolate Ospreay grabs the mic and gets booed, but instead apologises for breaking the one rule of PROGRESS. Strickland leaves to the back, but gets a round of applause from the fans, and the “please come back” chant. Will stays in the ring, and reminds us that he’s not won in PROGRESS in all of 2016… and since “his schedule doesn’t match PROGRESS’ schedule”, this is going to be the last time he’ll be here for a while. Intriguingly, Glen Joseph looked on with massive disapproval as Will made his way to the back, whilst most others applauded. Angry Glen is Angry…I know it wasn’t meant to come across like this, but that post-match promo from Ospreay sure did take the shine off of Strickland’s win…
The second half of the show starts with Jim inviting a fan into the ring who’d come from Canada to see the show. He gets a lap of honour without having to do a massive bike ride! This turns into plugs for PROGRESS’ shows in Canada and at WrestleMania weekend… there’s a sign of how far this group have come since their early days at The Garage in Islington.
Mikey Whiplash vs. Mark Haskins
This is Whiplash’s first match in PROGRESS since he beat William Eaver back at Chapter 31 – and his first appearance in Camden since this year’s Super Strong Style 16. Whiplash looks more like a distressed Panda with his facepaint, and he ends up getting the mic for some reason… and Whiplash demands Haskins put his title shot on the line here.
The pair start by grappling, with Haskins grabbing a hammerlock, then getting a headlock takedown, before he slips out of a headscissor reversal and gets a near-fall in the early stages here. Whiplash clubs away at Haskins, sending him to the mat, before a snapmare leads to a missed PK from Whiplash, who eventually falls to a low dropkick from the current number one contender Haskins.
Haskins takes Whiplash into the corner, and lands a diving dropkick, before slingshotting himself into the ring for another low dropkick in the corner. Whiplash avoids an elbow in the corner, before he turned a missile dropkick attempt from Haskins into a swinging back suplex for a near-fall. On the outside, Haskins gets shoved into the ring apron, before he’s rolled back in for just a one-count. A kneedrop leads to a two-count from Whiplash, who gets some new chants, including “you’re just a shit Papa Shango”, which tickled me for some reason.
Whiplash spits at Haskins, which seemed to rile him more than any of the stuff that Whiplash aimed at his family, and Haskins runs into a modified Stretch Muffler, which is turned into a facebuster for a near-fall. Next up is a massive Irish whip into the turnbuckles, which Haskins rebounds with at such force, he falls into the middle of the ring, before a single-leg dropkick finally gets Mark an opening.
A leg lariat downs Whiplash, who ducks a roundhouse, before taking the double knees to the face after trying for a sunset flip. More kicks from Haskins send Whiplash into the corner, but Haskins gets thrown into the turnbuckle himself, before recovering and rolling through into a Sharpshooter. Whiplash makes the ropes, but ends up having his arm stomped, before Haskins misses a double stomp and takes a Blue Thunder bomb for a two-count.
Whiplash knees Haskins in the corner, before a Finlay roll and a top rope knee drop gets him a two-count. After elbowing out of a Fireman’s carry, Haskins counters with a bicycle kick, only to fall to a rebound lariat for another two-count. A superkick to Whiplash’s legs knocks him off the middle rope, as Haskins goes up top and lands his double knee press for another near-fall.
After rolling to the outside, Whiplash becomes a target for a tope from Haskins, but he instead moves out of the way, then picks up Haskins for a powerbomb into the ringpost. Quickly rolling him back inside, Whiplash hits a powerbomb, then a Zombie Maker (death valley driver) for another near-fall. Whiplash turfs Haskins to the floor, then teases a dive, and collides with Haskins with an elbow suicida… but Haskins gets thrown back in and quickly responds with a tope himself.
Rushing back in, Haskins rolls through into a Fireman’s carry facebuster, then a superkick to get a near-fall on Whiplash, before rolling into a double armbar, which forces Whiplash to give up. This felt a little on the long side to me, but they did the job of reinforcing Haskins after he was on the losing side last time out, and perhaps plant a seed of doubt ahead of Brixton with a back injury… ***¾
Atlas Championship Tournament, Semi-Final: T-Bone vs. Rampage Brown
We start with trading forearms back and forth, before T-Bone and Rampage exchange a dropkick each. Rampage backdrops T-Bone to the outside, and we ended up with some chops on the floor, before Rampage takes an empty front row seat and chops his PCW tag partner some more, breaking the chair in the process.
T-Bone returns the favour… and what is it with the empty front row seats here?! Back inside, Rampage slams, then drops an elbow on T-Bone for a one-count, but T-Bone comes back with a Divorce Court arm whip. We get some traded chops, then T-Bone throws Rampage with a T-Bone suplex, before a superkick drops Rampage.
T-Bone dumps Rampage across the top rope, then kicks him to the floor, but Rampage counters with a back drop driver after what felt like a bit of downtime. A knee-strike from T-Bone leads to a superkick attempt, but which Rampage catches, before he reverses a tombstone piledriver and spikes T-Bone instead. That gets Rampage a near-fall, and he tries to deadlift T-Bone up into a piledriver, but he gets taken into the corner instead.
Rampage tries for a shoulder block off the top, and gets caught in an Ace crusher, before a piledriver from T-Bone gets him a two-count too. A second piledriver attempt is backdropped out of, before Rampage drills T-Bone with a short piledriver, before finally making the cover for a near-fall as T-Bone kicks out and gets his feet on the ropes.
A second piledriver attempt from Rampage is pushed off, but he hits it anyway, and there’s the win. It’s Rampage vs. Coffey in the final, and they have a stare-down on the stage afterwards. Hopefully that match will click, because this match never really got going. **½
Next up was a promo segment with Sebastian. Live at the show, Daniel Richardson – one of the PROGRESS super fans – chose to read a book instead. After sitting through this, I wish I’d done the same… Sebastian came out with a chair, and to complete silence. Not boos. Not catcalling. But SILENCE.
The cat-calls come when Seb takes the mic, and the crowd chants “we want Tom” (his former, now-retired partner in the GZRS). Apparently he hates frauds and people pretending to be something they’re not. Must be a whole lot of self-loathing for this guy pretending to be a wrestler then…
Sebastian’s bitter at his “big budget promos” that got ripped off, and that he lost his way by trying to appease the fans. He apparently walked away from the Natural PROGRESSion Series because he knew management would screw him, and then invites out Pastor Eaver. More guff about “Billy Boy’s secret”, and of course, they’re not spilling the beans. Seb wants Eaver to suffer, and I would take him much more seriously if his fake tan lines weren’t so bleedingly obvious!
Sebastian offers a steel chair to Eaver so he can get some revenge, but after he refuses, Seb just slaps him. Eaver fires up, but tosses down the chair, and ends up getting spat at, and then low blowed. The chair gets used on Eaver eventually, as security flooded the ring to separate Sebastian. He leaves, but gets another chair from the crowd (seriously, why the empty front row chairs?!), and attacks Eaver some more. This wasn’t awful… at times, it was boring, but the worst part of it all: this crowd was not simply buying what Seb was selling.
We have to applaud PROGRESS for trying, but my feelings on Seb are well known. Regardless of him being in the dog house (or whatever it was that led him to not get booked), it’s just odd how high up the card he’s being placed, considering how little experience he’s had. Even less if you factor out the GZRS comedy tag team stuff… Save for a few hecklers, this promo got little reaction, and this is meant to be, what, semi-main event?
For the main event, they wheel out Mark Haskins for commentary…
PROGRESS World Championship: Mark Andrews vs. Marty Scurll (c)
Andrews starts off in super-fast style, with an enziguiri to Scurll that sends the champion to the floor, then a tope con hilo, before he goes for a shooting star press and misses. A hurricanrana keeps Andrews on top, as does a wheelbarrow into a bulldog, as the challengers gets the first near-fall of the match.
Scurll replies with some clubbing forearms, before his attempt at a sunset flip is met with a low dropkick from Andrews. The pair go to the floor, and Andrews gets tossed into the crowd, before he takes a back suplex onto the ring apron after Scurll had teased using a steel chair instead. On the apron, both men trade forearms, before a “Just Kidding” superkick knocks Andrews to the floor, where he takes another superkick from the apron.
Scurll keeps up the pressure on Andrews, with a low dropkick and some stomps to the forearm. Some chops to a kneeling Andrews keeps the challenger grounded, but Andrews fires back and repeatedly elbows Scurll in the corner, before some knees and a wheelbarrow roll-up leads to a double stomp. An enziguiri to Scurll on the top rope sets up Andrews for a top-rope rana, then a standing shooting star press for a near-fall.
A second “Just Kidding” on the apron is blocked by Andrews, who sweeps the leg, sending Scurll onto the apron, before a superkick and a moonsault press keeps the champion on the floor. Scurll gets the knees up as Andrews tried to moonsault back into the ring, and a superkick leads to Scurll landing the Graduation (swinging double underhook suplex) for a near-fall.
A stiff powerbomb gets Scurll a two-count, as does a lariat, before Andrews pops up with an enziguiri… only to take an uppercut in the ropes. Andrews backflips out of a “Just Kidding” superkick, before his leap over in the corner sees Andrews land into a chicken wing. A backflip over gets Andrews a near-fall, before Scurll kicks the ropes and crotches the challenger, again for a near-fall.
Scurll climbs out of the ring and grabs another empty chair from the front row. The first one he got had already been broken by Rampage earlier in the evening, so he grabs a second chair, but gets stopped by referee Chris Roberts. Scurll decides to use the chair anyway, but misses, and is kicked to the floor by Andrews, who looks at the chair, and goes to the outside with it…
Scurll cowers back up to the stage, before suckering Andrews into a low kick. The chair comes into play anyway, as Scurll picks it up, then throws it at Mark Haskins, taking down Glen Joseph in the process. As the referee tends to Haskins, Scurll threatens to press slam Andrews off the stage, only to take a low blow from the Welshman instead. Andrews takes a run-up from the entrance way, and drops off the stage and into Scurll with a front flip dive, as the pair fight through the crowd and back into the ring.
Once they return, Scurll fights out of a rope-hung DDT, and catches Andrews in a front suplex into a chicken wing, but Andrews finally reaches the ropes. Scurll shoves the referee, trying to get a cheap DQ, and a third shove sees Chris Roberts shove Scurll into a pratfall, as Andrews rolls him up for a near-fall.
The tide turns again as Andrews gets his fingers snapped by the champion, but Andrews counters a release suplex into a stunner, then goes up top for a shooting star press… but Scurll gets his foot on the rope at the last possible second! Well played! As Andrews argues in disbelief, Scurll grabs the chickenwing, and there’s the quick tap-out. Marty Scurll retains, and heads to Brixton. A fine main event, with Scurll pushing his luck a little bit en route to retaining the title, and we’re all set for Brixton. ***¾
Or are we?
The Origin’s music plays, and all of them (bar Nathan Cruz) head out to the ring. They surround the ring, but Marty Scurll makes an exit with his belt, leaving the Origin in the ring with a beaten Mark Andrews. They bumrush Andrews, who’s saved by his FSU tag partner Eddie Dennis, with Jack Gallagher in tow… and Damon Moser. Random!
Andrew WK’s “Party Hard” plays non-stop as the show ends with an all-out brawl, like a much more upbeat version of a New Jack match from back in the ECW days. Moser and Mastiff fight among the crowd. Gallagher/Gibson and Ligero/Dennis pair-off, fighting throughout the Electric Ballroom, as Mastiff and Moser go up onto the stage, and finally to the back. All whilst “Party Hard” keeps playing. Marty Scurll pops out again to give Mark Andrews another chicken wing, once those six had left the building, and it again took an over-worked security to release the hold.
Mark Haskins runs out of nowhere, with a taped-up eyebrow, and superkicks Scurll, before standing over him with the title in hand.
That was weird, and felt like a page out of a WWE playbook with the run-on run-ins, but truth be told, it was an enjoyable as hell way to end the show. Another fun show, as always from PROGRESS, with only one match that didn’t seem to click. Fast forward through Seb’s rare appearance, and you’ll have no complaints!
In the days after this show, PROGRESS made the unusual (for them, at least) step of announcing the full card for Brixton on September 25:
PROGRESS World Championship: Marty Scurll (c) vs. Mark Haskins vs. Tommy End
PROGRESS Tag Team Championship: London Riots (James Davis & Rob Lynch) (c) vs. British Strong Style (Trent Seven & Pete Dunne)
PROGRESS Atlas Championship: Rampage Brown vs. Joe Coffey
Two-out-of-Three-Falls: Tommaso Ciampa vs. Zack Sabre Jr.
FSU (Eddie Dennis & Mark Andrews), Jack Gallagher & Damon Moser vs. The Origin (Nathan Cruz, Zack Gibson, El Ligero & Dave Mastiff) – if The Origin Lose, They Must Disband
Alex Windsor, Dahlia Black & Jinny vs. Laura Di Matteo, Nixon Newell & Pollyanna
Sebastian vs. “Pastor” William Eaver
As a seven-match card, this is incredibly stacked, and as always, there are some debating points. Sebastian vs. Eaver seems a little odd on this card, given how low down it potentially could be (for such a high-profile angle, when it started!). The likes of TK Cooper, Darrell Allen, Roy Johnson, Jack Sexsmith and Tyler Bate don’t make it onto the card, which is a shame given the parts these guys have played in recent shows.
As much as a battle royal feels like a throwaway, I’d hope that they do at least put something on to give these guys an appearance on the company’s biggest show to date. Either way, with less than 100 tickets left (at time of writing), this really is going to be the company’s biggest day out ever, and yet another sign that things are still on the up and up for British wrestling.