The 2021 Queen of the Ring tournament gets going in Huntington, as Rev Pro continued their path to the 9 Year Anniversary Show.
Queen of the Ring 2021 – First Round: Clementine pinned Chakara in 7:15 (**½)
Dan Moloney pinned Big Guns Joe in 11:40 (***)
Queen of the Ring 2021 – First Round: Zoe Lucas pinned Amira Blair in 5:10 (**¼)
Doug Williams & Brendan White pinned Kenneth Halfpenny & Shaun Jackson in 16:54 (***½)
Queen of the Ring 2021 – First Round: Gisele Shaw submitted Skye Smitson in 11:58 (***¼)
Queen of the Ring 2021 – First Round: Hyan pinned Mariah May in 6:53 (**¾)
Michael Oku and Robbie X went to a no-content in 14:19 – Michael Oku retained the RevPro Undisputed British Cruiserweight Championship (***¼)
This was the first half of a double-header for Rev Pro in the town of Huntingdon – their first outing there since January 2020 because… you know. Andy Quildan and JK Roberts are on commentary….
Queen Of The Ring 2021 First Round: Chakara vs. Clementine
We’re told the winner of this tournament gets a title shot at the anniversary show in Manchester later in August…
From the opening tie-up, Chakara’s side headlock is pushed off, but she charges down Clementine before running into a hiptoss. Armdrags follow from the relative rookie, who then trips Chakara into the ropes for a crossbody to the back that drew a two-count. An early trip up top sees Clementine get pulled down to the mat as Chakara came in with stomps for a two-count, before chops kept Clementine on the back foot. A snapmare and a kick to the back gets Chakara another two-count, before Clementine’s attempted comeback led to a hanging neckbreaker out of the corner. Chakara keeps going with a camel clutch, but Clementine rolled free and fought back with forearms and chops. Clotheslines follow, then a bulldog out of the corner for a two-count, before a headbutt and a swift DDT nearly won it for Chakara.
Clementine rolls out of a Widow’s Peak and grabbed a two-count, before a back suplex threw in another two-count. Chakara returns with a bridging Exploder for another two-count, before Clementine flipped out of another Widow’s Peak, then hit a backslide for the win. A fun opener that packed a fair amount into their time – with the debuting Clementine getting the upset here. **½
Post-match, Chakara kicked away at Clementine. Sore loser. Clementine needed to be helped to the back…
Dan Moloney vs. Big Guns Joe
This may be a short one, given the roster placings…
Moloney throws aside Joe to start, then again after Joe had pushed forward a little with a lock-up. Wash, rinse, repeat, but then Dan gets caught with an armdrag and a chinbar, which ends with Moloney breaking it in the ropes. A headlock takedown has Joe back ahead, before Moloney pushed free once more. Joe tries to hit shoulder blocks, but Dan’s not budging much, but he does leap into a Manhattan drop before Joe charged him out of the ring. Joining Dan outside, Joe gets posted then got dumped onto the apron with a back drop, as Moloney headed back inside to try and claim a count-out.
Narrowly beating the count, Joe dove back into the ring, but ate a back suplex for a near-fall. Moloney stays on top, but Joe fought out… only to get thrown down again. An Irish whip took Joe back into the corner as Moloney continued to bully him, throwing a back elbow off the ropes for good measure. A snap suplex is next out of Moloney for a near-fall, before Joe tried to dead weight himself to avoid a Drilla… to the point where he teased a back body drop to fling Moloney away. A Capture suplex from Joe takes Moloney across the ring, before Joe splashes in the corner en route to a German suplex. From there, down come the straps as Joe lands a gutwrench suplex for a two-count, but Dan’s able to recover and crack Joe with a leapfrog and a dropkick combo.
All that’s left is a Drilla, and that’s folks. A valiant effort from Joe, but in the end this was virtually an extended squash from Moloney. ***
Queen Of The Ring 2021 First Round: Zoe Lucas vs. Amira Blair
Blair was substituting for Maria de la Rosa, whose status wasn’t addressed here.
Lucas worked the wrist early on, before a side headlock took Blair down to the mat, only to have to scramble to the ropes after getting caught in headscissors. Another side headlock’s pushed away, as Mariah May trips Blair in the ropes, leading to the pantomime-y denials and Mariah’s ejection. We resume with Blair swinging for a clothesline, only to have more luck with a lucha roll-up for a two-count, before a Bronco buster trapped Lucas in the corner. Zoe replies with a hair pull, taking Blair into the ropes before a suplex landed for a two-count. A leg spreader from Lucas causes more problems, as did a single leg lariat and a facebuster, which drew a two-count for Lucas.
Blair fought back with a clothesline, before Mariah May came back out for the distraction. She’s knocked off the apron by Blair, only to get rolled up with a handful of tights as Lucas stole the win. Very brief, but decent for the time as Blair more than held her own despite being a late replacement. **¼
Kenneth Halfpenny & Shaun Jackson vs. Brendan White & Doug Williams
Halfpenny’s been winding up Brendan White for ages now, but with Doug Williams taking the Welshman under his wing, could Halfpenny get even more bitter?
The answer, of course, is yes.
White and Halfpenny start things off, locking up as they aggressively looked for a hold, but Halfpenny backed into the corner looking for a break. Returning, Halfpenny grabbed an overhead armbar on White, but Brendan escaped with a butterfly suplex for a two-count, before tagging Doug Williams into the fray. Doug grounds Halfpenny with some headscissors and humped his head into the mat, getting another two-count, before White returned to POUNCE through Halfpenny’s ponytail. A suplex is next for a two-count, while Williams came back to slam Halfpenny ahead of a springboard knee drop.
Halfpenny’s taking a beating as he then got thrown into White’s boot, leading to protestations from Shaun Jackson in the other corner, as White lands a neckbreaker to keep things going. An eye rake from Halfpenny got himself free to tag in Jackson, who got taken down to the mat by Williams in a front facelock. A drop toe hold followed, but Jackson rolled into the ropes as he screamed for a break, before White returned to hook away at Jackson’s nose. Working on the arm, White kept Jackson at bay, only for Shaun to club his way free. Halfpenny grabs White in the ropes, but Jackson missed a cheapshot and almost lost to a roll-up before he capitalised on a distraction with a cross-legged over-the-knee brainbuster for a two-count.
Winding up Doug Williams creates a distraction as Halfpenny returned to torque White’s wrist between his knees. A suplex from Jackson lands for a two-count, before Halfpenny rolled White down in a Key lock. White rolls outside, but got thrown into the second row by Jackson before White fought back, laying into Halfpenny before he got stomped in the gut. Jackson’s back senton gets a two-count, as did Jackson’s slam – which he was very proud of, by the look of things – as the Contender duo continued to wear down White. Jackson distracts the ref as Williams tagged in – that old trick – before a double-team suplex put White down for another two-count.
White finally breaks free with a back body drop, a back breaker and a Bossman slam before he made the tag out to Williams, who ran wild with clotheslines and uppercuts. There’s an Exploder on Halfpenny for a near-fall, before Williams threw Halfpenny from the inside out to Jackson on the floor. Dive? Bloody hell, Doug hits a tope too! After pulling Doug back outside, Jackson posts Williams, then tagged back in as the Contenders looked for a crossbody/neckbreaker combo. Except the referee refused to count until Halfpenny left the ring. Consistency! Another double-team leads to a STO/side Russian legsweep on Williams for a two-count, before White came in to hold up Halfpenny for a Hart Attack that almost wins it.
Another Hart Attack, this time from the Contenders, leads to a near-fall, but Williams turns it around as a diving boot from White leads to an accidental DDT… then a Tiger Driver from Doug for the win. An enjoyable tag match, with Williams’ experience only helping out the development of the three black-trunked Contenders here. ***½
Halfpenny threw a temper tantrum after the match. Aww.
Queen Of The Ring 2021 First Round: Skye Smitson vs. Gisele Shaw
It’s a return to Rev Pro for Smitson, who was pulled from her scheduled title shot earlier in July… and there’s a hearty dig from Andy Q who claimed that she “works for who pays her the most.” Blurred lines, eh?
Smitson attacked before the bell, then again when the match officially started, knocking Shaw into the corner for some kicks and stomps. Shaw struck back with some ground and pound, then with some chops, before a running uppercut decked Smitson for a two-count.
Shaw takes Smitson across the buckles for some knees and a push-down stomp, which leads to a near-fall, before Skye caught Shaw in the corner and took her down with a hanging DDT out of the buckles for a two-count of her own. Shaw remained on the defensive, having to kick out after a suplex while a grounded chinlock from Smitson gave the champion something to fight out of. A dropkick from Smitson lands for a near-fall, before she choked Shaw in the corner, mocking the ref’s count as she went along. Shaw responded by taking Smitson into the ropes for a knee, but misses as second one before rolling up Smitson on the way to an up-kick for another near-fall.
Smitson bounced out of the corner from an Irish whip, and almost nicked the win after an uppercut to Shaw, before Gisele snuck back in with a spear to bring things level. The pair trade strikes from there, before Shaw tripped Smitson en route to a flip neckbreaker and a spinebuster for a near-fall. Shaw looks for a DDT, but gets rolled up for a near-fall before hitting an enziguiri… that gets a near-fall, before Shaw grabbed an arm. Skye gets to the ropes to prevent the hold from being fully applied, then returned fire with an Air Raid Crash for a near-fall, before she Rolled the Dice. Shaw grabs the ropes to break the cover, then dragged down Smitson, repositioning her away from the ropes as she applied the armbar, levering back to force the submission. This was a great sprint of a match, with Smitson coming close to the win – but in the end it was Shaw who got her spot in the semis. ***¼
Queen Of The Ring 2021 First Round: Mariah May vs. Hyan
We’ve a Rev Pro debut for Hyan, as she was up against Mariah May… who was on her own. I guess that Dream Dollz friendship may only work one way, eh?
We start with a tie-up into the corner from Hyan, who’s shoved away by May, before standing switches led to May dropping down… and getting left there. Leg sweeps go back and forth as May gets charged down, but she’s back as she floated over Hyan in the corner, then pulled down the American by the hair. Hyan’s back with armdrags and elbows for a two-count, but May again pulls Hyan down by the hair before some springboard headscissors put May ahead. A low dropkick’s next for a two-count, before Hyan’s thrown into the corner, where May again put the boots to her. A switcheroo leads to Hyan chopping May as things remained incredibly even.
A clothesline from Hyan takes down May, as Wasteland and a legdrop followed for a two-count, before May returned with a springboard dropkick to keep things tight. May again goes up top, but took too long as Hyan throws some elbows before pulling her down into a nice spinning torture rack bomb for a near-fall. Suddenly we get interference in the form of Zoe Lucas, screeching her way to ringside, but Hyan doesn’t fall for the distraction as Lucas took her time getting to ringside, and puts away May with her version of the Glam Slam. A good little outing this, with Hyan booking her spot in the final four, and seemingly sets herself up for a tour-long feud. **¾
RevPro Undisputed British Cruiserweight Championship: Robbie X vs. Michael Oku (c)
A win over Chris Ridgeway at the Cockpit earlier in the month looked to get Robbie X this match… and it’s a rematch from Rev Pro’s last time out here.
Neither man shoots out of the blocks to get going, instead stopping to gauge the crowd’s reactions as commentary plugged their on-demand. When they did get going, it’s at quite a clip as Robbie X wrung Oku’s arm ahead of the break, before a side headlock’s pushed off… with Oku bouncing from the resulting shoulder tackle. Oku returns the favour, but Robbie X popped right back up, before the pace again quickened with armdrags and headscissors a-go-go before a dropkick took Robbie to the outside. Back inside, Oku drops Robbie X with a back elbow for a one-count, before kicks woke up Robbie X for a hiptoss and a low dropkick as he got back in it.
Robbie X ties up Oku on the mat, looking for a bow-and-arrow hold, but instead levered back the arm before he bounced Oku into the corner for a two-count. A chinlock keeps Oku down, as did a dropkick, before Robbie worked over the arm in the corner. Another whip took Oku across the ring, but he elbowed the challenger away before getting crotched on the top rope, as a Tree of Woe and a low dropkick followed for a near-fall. A moonsault from Robbie X misses as he then face-planted in trying to counter out of a tornado DDT from Oku, who threw a corner dropkick before an overhead kick took Robbie back down. The springboard moonsault followed for a two-count, as Oku then looked for a half crab… but Robbie X kicks away and threw him onto the apron for a handspring kick.
Robbie throws Oku right back into the ring for a missile dropkick, which gets a near-fall, before Oku’s able to respond by superkicking-away an X-Clamation. Oku heads up top for a frog splash, but it doesn’t get the win, so Oku goes back for a half crab, only for Robbie X to kick away again. He’s pulled up and returned with a rebound German suplex… then another, before a powerbomb ragdolled Oku for a near-fall. From the kick-out, Robbie X heads to the ropes for the X-Clamation, but that’s the cue for Mark Haskins and Chris Ridgeway to hit the ring, attacking both men as the match gets thrown out as a no-contest. This was good while it lasted, but you never really felt we were getting a title change here – and the interference of the Legion duo (who were chased away by Connor Mills) sets up for other matches around the Cruiserweight title. ***¼
Afterwards, Oku challenged Haskins and Ridgeway to a tag match on the evening’s show with he, Mills and Robbie X, before dropping Mills from the equation. That’ll go down well!
Coming in at under two hours, this was a brief matinee show for Rev Pro – and one that did the seemingly-rare thing of actually leaving you wanting more from some of the matches on the card. Rev Pro’s come back from the shutdown with a LOT of shows (perhaps too many, if you’re following along on-demand), but based on the first few cards back, the good booking that was strung along the Epic Encounters shows is here to stay.