Rev Pro wrapped up their 2021 with a festively-named show in St. Neots, featuring a pair of elimination matches.
Shota Umino pinned Joshua James in 8:22 (**¾)
Elimination: Mariah May, Shaun Jackson & Kenneth Halfpenny defeated Laura di Matteo, Brendan White & Danny Jones in 16:26 (***)
Luke Jacobs pinned Francesco Akira in 17:24 (***½)
TK Cooper & Chuck Mambo pinned Callum Newman & JJ Gale in 14:54 (***½)
Ricky Knight Jr. pinned Big Damo in 12:13 (***¼)
Elimination: Shota Umino, Robbie X, Connor Mills & Lee Hunter defeated Gideon Grey, Dan Moloney, Lucian Phillips & Yota Tsuji in 19:13 (***¼)
We’re at the Priory Centre in St. Neots, for the last Rev Pro show of the year. It took a while to make VOD, as we’ve got Andy Quildan flying solo on commentary.
Joshua James vs. Shota Umino
James came through the crowd for this one…
Shota starts with a wristlock, but James powers free before shoulder tackles gave way to forearms. More shoulder tackles knock James down as Shota put the boots to the Contender, leading up to a neckbreaker for a two-count.
Bodyslams keep James down, before he blocked a suplex and eventually dropped Shota ahead of a big splash off the ropes that almost led to the upset. Umino fires back with a back elbow and a low dropkick, before a Fisherman suplex almost ended the match. Shota adds some forearms and uppercuts as he baited James into action, earning himself some clotheslines as a big lariat dumped Umino for a near-fall. A rolling neckbreaker from Umino proves to be the response, and it’s enough to win the match as the former title contender picked up a relatively straight-forward win to end his year. **¾
Elimination: TEAM (Kenneth Halfpenny & Shaun Jackson) & Mariah May vs. Danny Jones, Brendan White & Laura Di Matteo
Danny Jones was subbing for Doug Williams here, as we got an impromptu appearance from the Greedy Souls…
May and di Matteo start with a lock-up, but Mariah takes di Matteo into the corner with some hair before she rolled through Laura’s leapover. A trip takes May into the ropes ahead of a dropkick to the back, before she escapes a DDT and made a tag out to Halfpenny. We’re not under mixed tag rules, so di Matteo stays in to hit a dropkick before Brendan White tagged in to blast Halfpenny with an uppercut and a German suplex.
Jones and White isolate Halfpenny for a spell, leading to a superplex from White before a neckbreaker from Halfpenny allowed him to tag out to Shaun Jackson. A suplex from Jones gets a near-fall on Jackson, who found himself in the wrong corner as all three of his opponents battered him with uppercuts. A back senton from White gets a two-count, before Mariah May’s distraction allowed Jackson to catch him with a dropkick as Brendan ended up getting choked in the opposition corner.
Mariah May’s in with a low dropkick to White for a two-count, before the ref gets distracted as White got choked on. An elbow drop from Jackson lands, as did another one alongside a sidewalk slam, but eventually they lose track of White as Danny Jones got the hot tag in.
An enziguiri allowed Jones to run Jackson into the buckles ahead of a clothesline, before Halfpenny ran in and knocked di Matteo off the apron. Jones chops Halfpenny down for that, before a knee strike nearly eliminated Jackson. Halfpenny’s back as a pop-up slam eliminated Jones at 11:32 into the match…
White comes in to suplex both halves of TEAM as he fires up, leading to a backbreaker that nearly gets Halfpenny eliminated. A powerbomb takes care of Jackson’s interference, before White blocked a Destroyer attempt, folding down on Halfpenny for the equalising elimination at 12:43. Halfpenny keeps the referee distracted as a low blow allowed Jackson to eliminate White at 13:25 – leaving us with Laura di Matteo against Jackson and May.
Halfpenny and White fight to the back as we went back to May and di Matteo, then Jackson… but Laura doesn’t back down, catching Jackson with a Codebreaker out of the corner as she built up to a springboard tornado DDT. Jackson makes the tag back out as May ran in with a clothesline, then quickly tagged out.
A big boot from Jackson has Laura back in trouble, before another pop-up slam led to the finish as May and Jackson left with the win. This was an enjoyable elimination match, although whatever plan they had to keep the Halfpenny/White feud rumbling into the new year already got derailed as Halfpenny’s out with a serious knee injury… ***
Luke Jacobs vs. Francesco Akira
Luke Jacobs is still looking to bed in as a singles wrestler in Rev Pro, and he’ll be getting a big test against Francesco Akira.
Starting off with a wristlock, Akira and Jacobs looked to find an opening, with Jacobs shrugging off a big boot before he charged through Akira. Jacobs gets taken outside for a plancha, as Akira looked to pull ahead, but took too long to hit double knees in the corner as Jacobs got free and returned with a big boot.
A Northern Lights suplex gets Jacobs a two-count, before things spilled outside with Akira getting slammed onto the floor. Back inside, a shot to the gut looked to weaken Akira, while a chop just decked him as Jacobs began to rough up the Italian. We’ve a face-washing boot from there, before Akira found a way back with a missile dropkick.
Akira followed in with a ‘rana and a Slingblade for a near-fall, before Jacobs recovered with a chop as he proceeded to press slam Akira off the top. A swivelling lariat dumps Akira for a near-fall, before the pair went in with forearms until a German suplex from Jacobs folded him in half.
Jacobs rolls together another one, before he got rolled up for a near-fall, as a spinebuster proved to be a timely return. Akira manages to lift Jacobs up top, then boot him to the outside as an apron piledriver ends up landing for Luke instead. The Gotch piledriver drew “murder” chants, as Akira barely beats the count… and gets dumped on his head with another Saito suplex.
Somehow Akira kicks out at two as another exchange of strikes has Jacobs on the back foot, as a pair of running double knees nearly nicked him the win. An O’Connor roll from Akira gets another near-fall, before a wild clothesline was ducked and countered with a Tiger Driver. Akira keeps pushing, but his missile dropkick’s countered into a powerbomb, while a follow up lariat adds another near-fall, before one more lariat waffled the Italian to the mat for the three-count. A lovely slice of action his, with Jacobs and Akira throwing hard – but in the end the former All Japan junior champion came off second best. ***½
Callum Newman & JJ Gale vs. Sunshine Machine (TK Cooper & Chuck Mambo)
It’s a battle of teams that’s been bruised by the suspended Aussie Open, but they’re both in a jovial mood to start.
Mambo and Newman start us off, as a chop to the chest from Mambo led to the springboard armdrag… that Newman quickly got back up from. Newman gets up for some headscissors off the top, before a rebound hook kick missed, ahead of a collision in the middle of the ring.
TK Cooper blind-tags in and catches Newman with a dropkick for a two-count, before Newman’s crucifix came to nought, so he went back with a ‘rana. JJ Gale’s in, but misses a springboard before a second springboard ‘rana and a dropkick had TK down for a two-count. Newman’s back to propel Gale into a moonsault as TK was being used as a crash pad briefly, before he struck back.
Gale swung with a clothesline, but it misses as TK and Mambo found their way back in, leading to the German Suplex Turbo Charged By The Power of Friendship for a near-fall. A forearm knocks Gale down for a two-count, before a Romero special propelled into a Flatliner kept that going. That move’s probably got a funky name, but I don’t yet know it…
A crossbody from Gale buys him enough time to tag out to Newman, but Mambo’s in too as Newman ran wild, cartwheeling past TK on the apron ahead of a PK, before he returned to the ring for a flip plancha to Sunshine Machine. A running shooting star press followed back inside for a near-fall as Newman nearly won it.
JJ Gale tags in, but hits his own man with a springboard uppercut… and that’s pretty much the beginning of the end as a swinging side slam from Mambo almost won it, then the Gory cutter double-team that I’m sure has a better name… the B Roll looks to follow, but Newman breaks it up as we trade superkicks. A Gory Knee from Gale rocks TK, but a Reef Break from Mambo ends up earning him a Made in Japan from Newman… who’s still legal as things break down into that tornado-ish way they tend to do.
A snap Destroyer from Gale plants TK, who then ate a reverse ‘rana, before Newman goes up top for a shooting star press… which would have won, had Mambo not dived in. We keep going as the ring clears, leading to a springboard frog splash from Mambo, then a Spiral Tap from TK for the win on Newman. This was wild, with TK and Mambo emphasising their spot as top contenders for the tag titles – while Newman and Gale didn’t do themselves any disservice as they came pretty damn close here. ***½
Ricky Knight Jr. vs. Big Damo
Big Damo’s back after he came up short against Yota Tsuji earlier in the year – as one of the Legion’s hired guns for the night…
We’ve a hot crowd to start this one off, as RKJ locked up with Damo into the corner before a headlock takedown had the Ulsterman on the mat. Damo returns with a shoulder tackle, but RKJ’s quickly back up, only to get taken into the ropes as he evaded the big man ahead of a leapfrog and a dropkick.
Heading outside, Damo’s chopped into the crowd, then clotheslined against the ropes, before he retaliated with a big boot. Forearms and a back senton put RKJ ahead briefly, but Damo takes him down and stretched him – with some questionable hooking in the process. A neck crank keeps Knight down, but RKJ’s able to muscle back up with a death valley driver into the corner.
RKJ follows through with a dropkick into the corner before he pulled Damo up for a draping DDT, before a choke bomb put Damo right back in it. An Angle Slam out of nowhere drops Damo for a near-fall, before RKJ headed up top and aborted a 450 splash, only to get wiped out by a Damo crossbody for a near-fall.
Damo heads up for a Vader Bomb, but gets cut off by RKJ, who joins him in the ropes… only to get elbowed down as Damo misses the Vader Bomb. Knight quickly comes back with a Fire Thunder Driver, and that’s enough to put the big man away in what was a decent match, and one that’ll serve as more than a line item in RKJ’s road to the top of Rev Pro when that happens. ***¼
After the match, RKJ vowed to win the Undisputed British Heavyweight title in 2022 – then challenged Luke Jacobs to a match at York Hall on January 29.
Elimination: The Legion (Gideon Grey, Lucian Phillips & Yota Tsuji) & Dan Moloney vs. Robbie X, Lee Hunter, Connor Mills & Shota Umino
There was an opening in this one as Michael Oku dropped out due to covid protocols, something that Gideon Grey had glee over… until Shota Umino came out to fill the spot.
We’ve a jump start as the match spilled outside almost instantly, brawling all around ringside as Gideon’s Christmas jumper gets a few remarks. Umino dumps Grey on the apron with a back suplex as things briefly returned to the ring, where Tsuji sent Robbie X into the buckles… which led to Robbie sailing outside.
Things remained equally chaotic when they got back to the ring as we got mounted punches in all the corners, but the Legion (and friend) clear the decks and begin to isolate Lee Hunter. Eventually Hunter broke free with a back body drop, but he couldn’t make the tag out before Dan Moloney tagged in and clotheslined him, before a Kitchen sink knee to the gut drew a two-count.
Hunter nearly nicked an elimination with a folding pin, but Moloney kicks out … then again from a swinging DDT, before Lucian Phillips distracted the referee, allowing Gideon to hit Hunter through the ropes with his cane as Moloney gets the first elimination at 8:06. Connor Mills takes over, only to get powerbombed out of the corner for a near-fall by Moloney.
Tsuji tags in and slams Mills, before he got thrown into Mills in the corner by Phillips. A backbreaker from Phillips nearly puts Mills away, so Grey comes in to try and wear down Mills, before Moloney returned… and took a Millshot out of nowhere. Tags bring in Tsuji and Robbie X, who go at each other, but it’s Robbie X who races ahead before a hiptoss and a low dropkick laid out Gideon Grey.
Robbie X continued to run wild, squatting Tsuji in a Fireman’s carry ahead of a death valley driver for a two-count, before a standing shooting star press from Robbie X nearly got Mills the next pin. More distractions looked to lead to Grey using the cane, but Shota Umino grabs it… only to accidentally lay out Tsuji with it as Mills picked up the easy elimination at 13:57.
Phillips and Mills take over, with the latter getting dropped with a sidewalk slam for a two-count, before an elbow and a superkick from Umino and Robbie X allowed Mills to jack-knife Phillips for another three-count at 14:47. We’re down to Grey and Moloney on one side, but Phillips lays waste to everyone before he left the ring.
Gideon Grey tries to steal pins, but he forgets who the legal man is – and could only get two counts on Connor Mills before tagging in Moloney. Mills escapes a Drilla and tagged in Robbie X to clear the way, only for him to handspring into a Drilla attempt before finally hitting an X-Clamation… but Grey pulls Moloney out of the ring to save the pin. Except Dan just walks off and abandons Grey, getting himself counted out at 18:14…
… which leads to the expected as another X-Clamation from Robbie X, then an Umino neckbreaker, then a 450 splash from Mills continued the beatdown, as Grey ends up falling to a Death Rider DDT. The good guys end the year on top as the Legion were fended off – with a post-show angle setting up Tsuji vs. Umino for the January York Hall show to boot. ***¼
A small, but very vocal crowd for this one as Rev Pro had to adapt on the fly as they warmed up for their trip to York Hall in January.