RevPro kicked off the year with a terrific show at the Cockpit and came straight back the next night. Live At The Cockpit 25 was wrapping up their women’s tournament and had a few other treats on the card too. How exciting. Let’s dish out some stars.
Lord Gideon Grey defeated Eddie Dennis by Disqualification
The ref didn’t come out of this one particularly well did he? Anyone who falls for the Eddie Guerrero trick in 2018 isn’t worthy of the stripes.
What we got here was more of an angle than a match. Lord Gideon Grey got to poke Dennis a bit by pointing out that entertainment doesn’t equal wins. Dennis then got to rough him before Gideon pulled the Eddie and got a DQ win. Eddie would then finish what he started post-match, taking the moral victory if not the actual one.
It was fine. I like both of the men involved, but this wasn’t about fantastic wrestling. Instead, we were witnessing another few pages in the story of Eddie Dennis.
Verdict: Two And A Half Stars
Deonna Purrazzo defeated Zoe Lucas
All wrestling matches should start with a hug. Make wrestling friendlier.
Sadly, they didn’t stay friends for long. Zoe Lucas doesn’t look like a striker, but when she’s given a chance, she loves to hit. She’s pretty good at it too, and it was that which sparked this into life.
Deonna Purrazzo was right there with her, though. These two put their friendship behind them to work a stiff contest. Purrazzo had an extra weapon in her arsenal, though, and it was that armbar. The second she got it on in the centre of this ring this one was over.
I felt like these two probably had one gear to go to. However, with Purrazzo knowing that she was going to wrestle again later, you can’t blame them for not slipping into it. This was still good, and hopefully, we’ll see them go that extra mile in the future.
Verdict: Three Stars
Jinny defeated Millie McKenzie
Jinny did some fantastic character work here. She was still acting like the Queen of the castle, but you could tell the beating she’d taken on night one had shaken her. She wanted to win this as quickly as possible and get out of that ring.
Unfortunately, the person across the ring from her wanted to dish out some suplexes. While I enjoyed Millie’s match with Charli Evans, this was the moment where I got the hype. Suplexes all over the shop – which is never a bad thing. She was determined to drop Jinny on her head and damn did she do it.
McKenzie did it so well that Jinny’s desperation to get out of there increased. Sadly, she pulled it off. Stealing a win from under Millie’s snarl with a roll-up. Jinny snuck into the finals before any more damage could be done.
This was a perfect example of why matches don’t need twenty minutes to be good. These two told a great story and did it quickly. Millie looks dominant while Jinny is established as the smartest person in the tournament.
Verdict: Three And A Half Stars
Will Ospreay, Travis Banks and Kurtis Chapman defeated Zack Gibson, Josh Bodom and Rob Lias
What was initially Chapman vs Lias became a six-man tag when every cunt got involved.
Can we take a second to appreciate how unselfish Will Ospreay is? This was three days after he’d won the IWGP Junior Title at the Dome and he spent the early portion of this mid-card match taking the heat section. I imagine it would have been easy for him to stand on the apron, get the hot-tag and scoop up the glory. Love him or hate him, you’ve got to appreciate the fact he didn’t do that. He was here to give the younger wrestlers a rub, and he did precisely that.
There were a lot of things I liked here. Gibson snarling, Ospreay flipping, Banks kicking and Chapman babyfacing. It was perhaps lacking if you are looking for psychology and intricate wrestling, but then again who wants that? Sometimes we just need lots of brilliant wrestlers doing cool stuff.
Verdict: Three And A Half Stars
Pete Dunne defeated Chris Brookes
In my last RevPro review I was bigging up Pete Dunne’s character work, and this was a perfect example of it. Chris Brookes came to the ring selling an injury. So what did Dunne do? He stormed down the ramp and sucker punched Chris. In typically Dunne fashion, he followed that up by dragging Brookes around the arena, bloodying him and being a horrible bastard.
All of which worked fantastically to make Brookes look like a hero. There is an art to getting the shit beating out of you and still getting over. Brookes and Dunne nailed it here. All that awful behaviour from Dunne was there just to make the reaction all the bigger when Brookes came firing back. To make him look that much better for refusing to give it up.
And it meant that it didn’t matter when he lost. There was no chance he’d win. He came into the match injured and had to face the rabid dog that is Pete Dunne. If he had got the win, it would have been a miracle. What mattered was that he fought. That when faced with said pissed-off Bruiserweight he refused to stay down until the (literal) Bitter End.
Verdict: Four And A Half Stars
Nina Samuels and Charli Evans defeated Sammi Jayne and Zan Phoenix
This started off as a pretty standard tag team match. Jayne and Phoenix were jumping on every chance to get a cheap shot in which Samuels and Evans combated by showing off some lovely teamwork. The action was good; there just wasn’t much to write home about.
However, towards the end, this picked up. Phoenix and Evans brawled to the outside disappearing from the action as Jayne hit a super-hurricanrana on Samuels. Those two then went on to have a fantastic section in the ring. It was hard-hitting and fast-paced with both of them getting their stuff in. On top of that, when Samuels did get the win, Jayne decided she was having none of it and came back to dish out a beating.
This wasn’t an incredible match or something that you’re ever going to go back to, but it was well-booked. You can now spin-off from this into Phoenix vs Evans and Samuels vs Jayne. It’s given the women who didn’t have a big-spot in the tournament something for the future.
Verdict: Three Stars
Zack Sabre Jr defeated Martin Stone to retain the Undisputed British Heavyweight Title
Martin Stone is a rare example of someone who isn’t only willing to play Sabre’s game but wants to play it. These two were happy to both grapple for position and slap the shit out of each other. They did both to great success here.
It’s a style that perfectly suits itself to building a match. Both men started slow, feeling each other out on the mat and seeing who could grab the upper hand. Then the strikes began, and things got nasty. There were some slaps which I felt. Which is impressive considering I’m a few hundred miles away watching it a week later.
And as we got deeper into the match there were a couple of moments where Stone looked like he had it. A brutal pair of Tower of Londons would have seen off most champs. There was a feeling that The Guv’nor might have had Sabre’s number. For a second you even wondered whether he’d get the win.
Sadly, if you give Zack Sabre Jr an inch, he’ll take your arm and try to break it. As Stone hoisted him up for a powerbomb, Sabre saw his chance, and a few seconds later Martin was tapping.
This was a fantastic example of a style that is incredibly British. That blend of bar room brawling and gentlemen’s grappling. There was never really a chance of Stone taking that belt, but they had you on the edge of your seat now and then, and that can go down as a job well done.
Verdict: Four Stars
Jinny defeated Deonna Purrazzo to become the Undisputed British Women’s Champion
The story of this tournament was whether or not someone could beat Jinny. Nina Samuels and Millie had both given her a shock, but couldn’t get the job done. Could Deonna Purrazzo be the one to finish off the Queen?
Well, no and I’m not sure if I ever believed she could. This match seemed set for a Jinny win, and that was what we got. Even when Purrazzo went out there and dominated the action, it felt like it was all just preamble for the Jinny coronation.
On the other hand, I’m aware I’m judging this harshly. It was a good match. Purrazzo was able to ground Jinny, using her superior technical skills to control the action and even get the visual pinfall after a ref bump. Jinny meanwhile was in survival mode. Looking to finish it whenever she got the chance. In the end, that opportunity would present itself, and one Acid Rainmaker was all it took.
Which leads me to my second problem: I wanted epic. After a long tournament, I wanted to feel like both women had given everything they had to come out the champ. Instead, the finish was just there. One second it was ongoing the next it was done. Don’t get me wrong; they worked hard. I just felt they had one more level to go.
I want to make it clear that this was a good wrestling match and one that came close to being great. My point is that it could have been better and, to be honest, that’s a pretty good place for RevPro’s Women’s Title to start. If the future improves on this, it will be an incredible division.
Verdict: Three And A Half Stars
Post-match Bea Priestley came down to the ring to confront Jinny. This allowed Millie McKenzie to sneak in and suplex her from behind. RevPro is not wasting their time in setting up opponents for the Queen.
Another great show from RevPro. The only match that wasn’t good (and even it was alright) was Dennis vs Grey, and it can be given a break because it was focusing on progressing the story. Elsewhere, Dunne continues to be amazing, Zack’s title run goes from strength to strength and the women’s division got off to an exciting start. This weekend was an impressive start to the year for RevPro, let’s hope they keep it up.