It’s a stacked line-up at the 229 in London, as both the heavyweight and cruiserweight titles were on the line in an eventful show.
Great British Tag League 2023 Block A: Kid Lykos II & Kid Lykos pinned Mark Trew & Kieran Lacey in 13:23 (***½)
Robbie X defeats Spike Trivet by DQ in 9:38 (***)
Dani Luna & Kanji pinned Alex Windsor & Mercedez Blaze in 13:25 (***¼)
Ricky Knight Jr. pinned Shigehiro Irie in 17:59 (****)
Leon Slater defeats Trent Seven in 13:15 (***½)
Great British League 2023 Block B: TK Cooper & Chuck Mambo pinned Maverick Mayhew & Danny Black in 11:43 (**¾)
Michael Oku pinned Luke Jacobs to retain the Rev Pro Undisputed British Heavyweight Championship in 30:02 (****½)
Connor Mills pinned Sha Samuels to retain the Rev Pro Undisputed British Cruiserweight Championship in 15:47 (***)
— To watch this show, head over to RevProOnDemand.com
We’re back at the 229 in London as all roads lead to Crystal Palace for next month’s Uprising. It’s a PACKED house as well, with two title matches on the card seemingly attracting a lot of ticket buyers. Good.
But first… having been out in the pre-show for some last minute cardio as the last in his Making Weight series had him needing to lose a few pounds to creep under that 205lb limit for his Cruiserweight title shot tonight. If Sha didn’t get under the limit, then he’d have half an hour to do so and still have the match against Connor Mills – but it’d be non-title. That proved to be moot because Sha would comfortably get under the limit… and so his title match would be in the main event.
Nittiest of nit-picks… surely the British Cruiserweight title should have a 15-stone limit, as opposed to the number WWE used for their ill-fated recent go-around of the division?
Commentary comes from Andy Quildan and Gio Nolastname…
Great British Tag League 2023 Block A: Kieran Lacey & Mark Trew vs. Lykos Gym (Kid Lykos & Kid Lykos II)
This was pretty much win-or-bust for Trew and Lacey, having lost to the Knights last month here… while Lykos Gym already had three points on the board, beating the Billington Bulldogs in Southampton last month.
Trew and Lacey looked to antagonise the wolves early on, with an early Lacey piledriver attempt forcing Lykos to escape and pick up the pace. A tijeras and a dropkick from Trew gets rid of Trew’s beanie… ahead of a double dropkick that affected Trew more than Lykos II. Kid Lykos grabs Trew’s beanie as a quick turnaround left Trew in a heap, before Kid Lykos II came in and quickly found himself double-teamed for the Gravedigger – a neat pop-up into a slam/neckbreaker combo. That led to a sustained period of offence from the newcomers, who easily overpowered Lykos II’s set-up for a brainbuster en route to some shoulder charges in the corner.
A package powerbomb from Trew’s escaped as Lykos II hit a death valley driver in return, allowing him to make the tag to Kid Lykos to clear house. A dual headscissor/armdrag combo clears the way, before Trew again went for a package powerbomb… only to get thrown hard into the corner. Lykos adds an Air Raid Crash for a near-fall, before Trew hit back with a package powerbomb for a near-fall of his own. The Black Flag – a suplex/powerbomb double-team – adds another near-fall on Lykos, before Lacey’s superplex attempt was shoved aside. Lykos II tags in to hit a satellite jawbreaker amid a barrage of offence from the wolves, before things spilled outside as the Lykii were taken to the floor for a springboard moonsault from Trew to the floor.
Lacey capitalises with a piledriver to Lykos II back inside, while Mark Trew’s shooting star press kept them ahead… another attempt at the Black Flag’s thwarted though, as was a brainbuster, which Lacey turned into an X-Plex instead. A diving headbutt from Trew lays out Lykos, leaving Lykos II on his own amid a Parade of Moves… Lykos returns to help propel Lykos II with an X-Plex onto Trew, and that’s the win for the questionable wolves. Trew and Lacey showed more than enough here to keep them on the roster, but the more experienced pair won out in a breathless opener. ***½
That win puts Lykos Gym into a shoot-out with the Knights to see who wins block A…
Spike Trivet vs. Robbie X
A rematch from Southampton last month – albeit without the “win and get a title shot” stipulation for Trivet. Spike headed after David Francisco during his entrance, which led to Spike laying out Francisco, alongside Joshua James and Lee Dawson. Francisco’s left laying, while a sucker punch to James made sure he hit the deck too…
Spike starts by paintbrushing Robbie X into the corner, following quickly with a Saito suplex… but Robbie X is instantly back with a hiptoss and a cartwheel dropkick amid a tetchy start. A Beyblade kick in the corner looked to lead to something off the top, but Spike’s back up and just throws Robbie with an overhead belly-to-belly into the buckles. Stomps from Trivet keep Robbie in the corner, while the pair trade back elbows as Trivet continued to push on. A back body drop flings Trivet into the air ahead of a handspring kick and a moonsault into the front row. Back inside, a Molly Go Round gets Robbie a near-fall, before the former Cruiserweight champion went all Junkyard Dog with some headbutts.
Robbie stomps on Spike’s chopping hands, but a backflip kick was just sidestepped as Trivet charged back with a punch and a sit-out front suplex for a two-count. Strikes from Trivet lead to an attempted flying Codebreaker, but it’s caught as Robbie X tried to force his way back in… the pair trade shots from there, leading to a gutwrench sitout powerbomb from Robbie for a near-fall. Trivet adds a Madame Guillotine – the name nicked from Cara Noir – for a near-fall, before Robbie cut off Spike with a backflip kick on the top rope. A superplex attempt’s thwarted as Spike adds a double stomp off the top… then a shotgun dropkick and a pumphandle’d tombstone for a near-fall. From there, Spike roughs up Robbie X, then headed out for a chair… which is eventually used on Robbie X for the disqualification. Spike’s 0-2 in Rev Pro now, and marked that by bowling Robbie X into the crowd before laying out the Contenders once more. ***
Dani Luna & Kanji vs. Alex Windsor & Mercedez Blaze
We’re smashing up two feuds with this tag match, as Kanji’s looking for more reps before going for another title match… while Dani Luna looks to have done away with her knee brace.
Kanji and Blaze start us off with lockups into the ropes, thanks to Blaze going for the hair… before Kanji’s Corning hold rolled Blaze down to the mat. A trip-up keeps Blaze down ahead of a splash to the back for a two-count, before tags brought in Dani Luna and Alex Windsor. Alex goes for Luna’s lower back in the early stages, but Dani’s able to come back with a sliding lariat for a two-count. Kanji tags in as Dani Luna proceeded to trip up Windsor in the ropes, as we built up to a snap low-pe from Luna… while Blaze was taken into the ropes for some chops from Kanji… who added a crossbody off the middle rope to the floor for good measure. Back inside, Kanji stayed on Windsor, only to get caught with a right hand and a kick to the back, before basement dropkicks kept the champion Windsor ahead.
A flash roll-up out of the corner earns Kanji a two-count, before Blaze came off the middle rope with a spear for a two-count of her own. Blaze keeps going with double knees into the corner, before she flung Kanji into the buckles with a double underhook suplex. Kanji fights back with a ZSJ-esque neck twist, then tagged in Dani Luna, who went after Windsor with shoulder charges and Exploders. Blaze tries to intervene, but gets caught with a superplex before Windsor ran into a fallaway slam from a resurging Luna… a snapping powerbomb keeps Luna on top for another two-count. A quick turnaround sees Luna get pulled outside and posted by Blaze, while Windsor took a rare trip up top… and got booted by a returning Luna.
Dani’s elevated German suplex from the outside in dumps Windsor on her head, as the still-legal Kanji pounced. Luna gets her own back, pulling Blaze to the outside as Kanji went for a Tiger Feint Kick… which was caught by Windsor and turned into a Blue Thunder Bomb for a near-fall. A Sharpshooter follows from Windsor, but Blaze tags in to hit a trapped Kanji with a curb stomp for a near-fall…
Windsor and Blaze get a little tetchy, tagging themselves in as that team ended up tearing apart by the seams, leading to Luna getting knocked into Kanji on the apron. An elevated Blue Thunder Driver out of the corner almost won it for Windsor from there, only for Dani to come right back with an inside cradle for the win – and to almost certainly earn her a title shot? ***¼
Post-match, Blaze jumps back in to attack Luna, but Kanji makes a save… only for Luna to accidentally wipe her out with a running knee.
Shigehiro Irie vs. Ricky Knight Jr.
It’s another outing for Shiggy in Rev Pro – and this one promised to be a bit tasty… and a preview of a match they’re doing in PROGRESS a week later.
We open with RKJ locking up Irie into the corner, before shoulder tackles back-and-forth led to Irie just slamming RKJ ahead of the rebound splash by the ropes. RKJ responds by taking Irie outside for a flip senton, which looked to aggravate Knight’s elbow as things headed back inside. Irie counters a suplex with one of his own, before he began to wear down RKJ’s elbow, following up with some hammer blows to the body part, then some chops by the ropes. RKJ eggs on Irie though, who threw chops and headbutts as RKJ was sent down. RKJ avoids the Teddy Bear, but Irie’s back with a twist on it moments later, hitting a clothesline from the apron ahead of a slingshot Teddy Bear from the outside in.
RKJ manages to mount a comeback with a corner death valley driver, following with a dropkick and a running basement dropkick into the corner, while a draping DDT back into the ring earned a near-fall. A stalling suplex followed out of RKJ for another near-fall, before Irie slipped out of a Fire Thunder Driver attempt to headbutt RKJ. A delayed back body drop frees RKJ, but he’s quickly sent outside and onto the apron for that crossbody through the ropes, then a snap piledriver on the floor for good measure. Back inside, Irie’s getting a two-count from all that, but took too long to follow up as RKJ stops a cannonball, only to get another headbutt.
RKJ keeps going, but his Quebrada’s headbutted away… something I’ve never seen before. Bloody hell Shiggy…
Elbows follow from the pair, going back and forth until RKJ busted out a German suplex and a senton bomb for a near-fall. A Fire Thunder Driver’s next, but Irie slips out and hits… a Destroyer?! That took Knight to the corner for a cannonball, picking up a near-fall before RKJ hit back with a high-angle’d sit out powerbomb. More chops follow in the corner, as RKJ elevated things with an spider German suplex… but he doesn’t follow up as Irie bounced back with a cannonball. Literally. A Beast Bomber spins RKJ next for a near-fall, but he’s back up to pepper Irie with headbutts on the top rope. Irie hits back with a clonker of a headbutt to down RKJ, only to leap into a cutter from there, before the Shell Shock finally put Shiggy away. ****
Trent Seven vs. Leon Slater
Trent’s running with the gimmick that he’s unbeaten in CMLL… and he’s apparently the greatest luchador in the country. No comment.
Opening with a lock-up, Trent shoves away a side headlock before he took out Slater with a crossbody and a slam. Mounted punches in the corner from Trent are stopped at six, but an elevated back body drop brought Leon down with snow. Chops from Trent keep Leon at close quarters, before Slater shrugged off chops to the back and began to fire up with chops of his own. Trent replies with a chop to the leg, then a DDT for a two-count as the crowd repeated Slater’s digs at Seven. A running kick took Trent onto the apron… then down to the floor, before Trent ended up walking into an over-the-post tope con giro… and they didn’t even knock over any of the merch!
A Lap of Honour from Slater ended up with him in the crowd before Trent helped himself to a lucha mask. The merch table’s brought into play as Slater’s thrown into it, before an apron piledriver attempt was kicked away by Slater. Back inside, Slater scored a froggy crossbody for a two-count as Trent was looking spent. Slater’s able to land a misdirection cutter for a near-fall, but took too long to follow up as he’s chopped on the top rope. A twister superplex countered Trent’s superplex, with Slater’s dropkick to the ear finding its mark seconds later… a second running kick’s countered into a powerbomb as Trent fought back with an Emerald Flowsion for a near-fall.
Slater’s able to find a way in with a leg lariat, but Trent’s able to hit a twisting piledriver in response for another two-count, before he donned that lucha mask from earlier. He threatens a flip, and missed a corkscrew back senton… Slater pulls off the mask, then wiped out Trent with another leg lariat, before a swanton 450 put Trent away. ***½
Great British League 2023 Block B: Sunshine Machine (Chuck Mambo & TK Cooper) vs. CPF (Danny Black & Maverick Mayhew)
Its last chance saloon for teams here, after both suffered losses last month. CPF again were represented by Danny Black and Maverick Mayhew – despite Joe Lando having recovered from an ankle injury (to the point where he and Danny won tag team gold in Belgium for Bodyzoï last weekend).
Mambo and Mayhew start us off at pace as Mayhew tried to snatch a quick win with a Trent Seven-ish crossbody. A blind tag brought in Danny Black after Mambo’s leaping double knees/flapjack thingy took down Mayhew. Black’s dropkick took Mambo into the corner ahead of a running cannonball, while a Ki Krusher lands… but TK Cooper’s in to try and stop the momentum. An enziguiri from Black lands, as did a leaping leg lariat from TK, who’s apparently legal and able to get a two-count. Mambo’s back as the former tag champions build up to the German Suplex Turbo Charged by the Power of Friendship for a two-count on Black, before Mayhew came in with a superkick to send Mambo outside for a flip senton. Danny Black gets in on the act too, but a TK Cooper headbutt cuts off Black, who had better luck at the second time of asking with a low-pe into a stunner on Mambo.
Back inside, CPF hit a double-team ‘rana, a reverse ‘rana and a Shining Wizard to TK for a near-fall. Mambo fights back with chops to Mayhew, then with slams and a legdrop for a two-count… a Bad Burrito’s escaped by Mayhew, who hits an over-the-knee brainbuster… before lifting Mambo up in a back suplex for a Black Meteora for a near-fall. Mambo’s attempted Blockbuster to Mayhew in return ends up being like a flying cannonball off the top as TK returned to clear the way, taking down Mayhew with an Exploder. A running shooting star press is next for a near-fall, followed up the Dodon knee strike for another two-count.
Danny Black blind-tags himself in and hits a standing Spanish Fly to TK… Mayhew’s Awful Waffle drew an “oh God” from commentary as CPF pushed on… see-saw sunset flips troll the ref as Mambo and Black trade pins… they keep going as Black escaped a Gutterball, then got Razor’s Edge’d into TK and Mambo to hit a double cutter. That’s unique. Mambo’s back as Black ends up eating the Gutterball… but Mayhew breaks up the pin with a splash off the top. Sunshine Machine end up outside again as it’s time to dive again, but a flip senton’s caught as Mayhew’s instead popped up onto the side of the ring. Back inside, Mambo has to kick out of a roll-up, before the Designated Driver finally put CPF away – effectively knocking them out. This felt a little rough around the edges, particularly the early going when they were rattling through stuff, but it picked up well towards the end. CPF have to take on the champions Subculture in a dead rubber, while Sunshine Machine have the Greedy Souls in a straight-shootout. **¾
Trent Seven wanders back out to protest his loss from earlier – claiming he should have won via disqualification when Leon Slater ripped the mask off of his head. All this leads to Trent, going on an Alan Partridge-esque ramble as the “greatest luchador” went on to issue an open challenge for Uprising against any luchador…
Rev Pro Undisputed British Heavyweight Championship: Luke Jacobs vs. Michael Oku (c)
Last summer, Luke Jacobs beat Oku for the British Cruiserweight Championship at Summer Sizzler… can he repeat that?
We get going with Luke easily taking Oku’s back as they headed to the mat, before an attempted powerbomb ended with Oku scurrying away. A lock-up from Jacobs ends in the ropes, and with a cheapshot from the challenger, before Jacobs sunk Oku with a singular chop. Foreshadowing.
A shoulder tackle bounces Oku to the outside… he returns and manages to catch out Jacobs with a ‘rana before hitting dropkicks either side of a mighty chop. Another dropkick gets Oku a two-count as he then began to work over Jacobs’ fingers, while a series of chops in the corner just wound up Jacobs, who nailed Oku with a forearm into the ropes before he proceeded to try and kick Oku’s spine out through his chest. Back-and-forth forearms follow ahead of a crossbody from Oku that’s caught and turned into a slam, with a back senton quickly following as Jacobs looked to be in control. Draping Oku across the top rope, Jacobs heads up for a double stomp to the side of the head for a two-count, following up with more chops and a brainbuster for a two-count.
Another chop sends Oku sailing out of the ring, but Jacobs follows up with chops for Andy Quildan’s “golden boy” before he flipped off Amira at ringside. Back in the ring, we’ve yet more blistering chops for Oku, before Jacobs returned to his attempts at dislodging Oku’s spine with kicks. Somehow Oku’s able to fight back with elbows and boots out of the corner, ahead of a missile dropkick that took Jacobs off his feet. Oku begins to beat Jacobs to the punch, finding a way through with a DDT, then a tornado DDT out of the corner for a near-fall. A half crab attempt’s pushed away, but Oku rebounds with a PK… before a springboard moonsault missed. Jacobs is right back with strikes, including a wicked lariat as Oku went for his misdirection knee. Oku kicks out, then avoided a powerbomb… landing that misdirection knee at the second attempt, then followed up with another one, before a Busaiku knee wiped out the champion.
Luke pulls down the knee pad, but a Go 2 Sleep’s countered… Jacobs counters it into an Electric Chair drop, before Oku hit back with a reverse ‘rana. Oku lands a superkick, but he’s lariat’d into the mat by a leaping Jacobs, who then went for a Tiger suplex, only for Jacobs to land a clothesline to the back of the neck instead. Oku sneaks back in as he kicks Jacobs’ leg out of his leg, following up with a shinbreaker and a low dropkick to the shin, before a dropkick into the corner misses. Rather than crash and burn, Oku lands on the top turnbuckle, only to get chopped in the back, then thrown down to the mat with a nasty thud. Heading outside, Jacobs tries to lariat Oku back into the ring, but instead the pair trade shots on the apron before Jacobs cleared the front row… and teased a piledriver into the chairs. Instead, Oku lands a superkick, then ‘rana’d Jacobs into the long-departed crowd.
Oku heads back into the ring, happy to take a count-out… but Luke dives back in time, only to take a springboard moonsault for a near-fall seconds later. Heading up top, Jacobs stops Oku with a headbutt before Oku dropped the arm across the top rope… a second rising headbutt cracks Oku ahead of a superplex that bounced both men off the mat. Luke’s back to his feet first, but his wrist’s causing trouble… allowing Oku to hit back with a superkick after Jacobs had trouble with a double underhook. Stomps to the lariating hand and arm get the crowd on Oku’s back. A running knee from Oku’s caught, but he’s able to turn it around with a half crab on Jacobs… which eventually ends in the ropes. Jacobs is back with a headbutt and a powerbomb, but it’s still not enough as Jacobs then hit the ropes for the lariat… but gets cut off with a running dropkick.
Oku goes up top once more, but his frog splash lands in Jacobs’ knees… Luke builds up with a running kick and a slam, but the moonsault’s cut-off as Oku instead went back up for an avalanche reverse ‘rana. Another frog splash attempt lands, but Jacobs kicks out just before three as the pair then restarted with elbows back-and-forth. Jacobs paintbrushes Oku with palm strike after palm strike though, then caught a misdirection knee and turned it into a Go 2 Sleep for a near-fall. Luke hits the ropes and flips Oku with the lariat for another near-fall… then teed up for a Torpedo headbutt. Oku looks to have sidestepped it, but the crowd fell into a hush as blood began to pour from Oku’s eyebrow… a flash small package followed, and that’s the win for Oku. A hurried finish, but an emotional aftermath that saw Oku’s white elbow pads get stained red was the marker of what you’d think would be career-shortener of a match. ****½
Jacobs took the mic afterwards, and put over Oku for outlasting him – despite being cut open badly… Luke leaves, and in comes some guy in a hoodie and a mask to attack him from behind. How long would it be before he was revealed? SOON…
The masked guy hits the ring and pulls off the mask to reveal himself as Zack Gibson, who cross-chopped Oku back to the mat. With a mic in hand, Gibson reintroduced himself to those who’d forgotten… and then verbally laid into Oku for simply being the champion. Zack told us he’d left his newborn daughter in Florida so he could deliver the message to Oku… I mean, fair play. We all saw what happened to the video messages last month! It was a hell of an impassioned speech from Gibson, with Oku fighting back… only for Gibson to get the last word with a spinning tombstone… which leads to him vs. Oku for the title at Uprising next month.
So after all that, it’s time for the main event, as Sha Samuels looks to beat Connor Mills for a second time – this time with the Cruiserweight title definitely on the line.
Rev Pro Undisputed British Cruiserweight Championship: Sha Samuels vs. Connor Mills (c)
Mills charges Sha during the entrances, but Samuels was smart to it, clotheslining Mills to the outside before the pair brawled around the merch table and bar area.
The camera finds sight of them just in time to catch Sha clotheslining Mills out of a chair, before he styled out an elbow drop on the floor. They make it into the ring so the match can get going, where Sha keeps the upper hand with an uppercut to the knee ahead of a volley to the back.
Another clothesline off the ropes drops Mills as Sha then headed up top for an elbow drop, landing it for a two-count. Heading outside, Sha slingshots Mills into the ring post, before Samuels was caught up top with kicks, sending him flying to the floor. Time to move again as Mills’ tope sent the challenger into the crowd, before they headed back inside as Mills scored a dropkick off the middle rope for a two-count. A Kitchen Sink knee spins Sha down to the mat, while a Dragon screw keeps things in the champion’s favour. We’ve an Indian deathlock too as Mills looked to force the submission, but Sha just throws Mills into the mat to break the hold. Sha’s snap Michinoku Driver bought him some more time, before an up-kick from Mills countered an East End Destroyer attempt.
Mills’ shoulder charge is sidestepped as he met the ring post again… Sha quickly follows him outside with a tope, then took things back inside as he looked to build momentum, beating Mills to the punch en route to a uranage backbreaker. Samuels goes back up top, but rather than go for a moonsault he repositions and goes for a frog splash… landing in Mills’ knees. A Yakuza kick and an X-Plex from Mills turns it around in a hurry, as we go back to the back-and-forth strikes. Mills’ rebound clothesline is kicked away as Sha hit a clothesline instead, then a rebound spinebuster for a near-fall… an X-Plex from Samuels follows, then a moonsault that crushed Mills for another near-fall.
Mills tries to back body drop away another East End Destroyer, but it’s countered into a sunset flip for a near-fall… and then, ref bump! Mills instantly cracks Sha with the belt, before a Burning Hammer dumped Sha on his head for a near-fall, with the ref having shrugged off that squash in the corner.
Picking up the belt again, Mills goes to swing it… but the ref disarms him, then took an errant clothesline from Sha. With no ref, Sha decides to kicks Mills low, then use the belt himself, before an East End Destroyer and a spinebuster drew a visual 10-count, with referee Oscar Harding running out in time to count the near-fall. Mills tries to beg off, and ends up getting headbutted again before he evaded one more spinebuster. A rebound lariat to the back of the head follows, then one to the front… but Sha kicks out at one! Mills’ dropkick in the corner keeps him on top, before a 450 splash off the top ended up being enough to get the crowd-deflating win. This felt like it was going to have a hard time getting past the prior match – if only because of the injury at the end – but the sight of the crowd scurrying at the end perhaps was a sign this was a match too far on this night? ***
Post-match, Mills fights a busted mic and called out Leon Slater to take his title shot at Uprising next month… and that’s our show!
This was shaping up to be an all-timer of a show – but ended up coming a cropper at the end, partially because of the crowd being burned out, and partially because “what people expected” didn’t happen. I get that the return of Zack Gibson may not have been the way they’d have wanted to close out the show, but the flat finish of the main event, particularly after the crowd had been built up for the title change was just weird…