For the third year running, wXw used day two of World Tag Team League to host their Femmes Fatales tournament. Much like Ambition’s role during 16 Carat, this is a chance for them to do something a little bit different and use the fact they have a load of talent in town to put together something cool. Fingers crossed it lives up to the billing.
Meiko Satomura defeated Wesna
Satomura and Wesna started slowly, with just hints of violence as Meiko lashed out with kicks to her opponent’s legs. Commentary did a fantastic job as they brought up Satomura’s long feud with Aja Kong and linked that to her ability to floor larger competitors.
That statement was backed up by the work in the ring. In many ways, this was a masterclass of how to work with a larger foe. Satomura provided 90% of the movement, dashing around Wesna and sneaking in strikes whenever she got the chance. One blow wasn’t enough to floor the monster, but as they added up, Wesna began to feel the effects.
Meiko’s problem was that when Wesna did catch her, she went down. The larger woman packed a vicious punch, and one move from her was worth ten from Satomura. When the Japanese legend got caught, she was in trouble.
Except, Meiko ain’t no scrub. She took what Wesna hit her with, including a Superplex and gave it back to her, eventually connecting with a Death Valley Bomb for the three. While both women played their roles well here, those seeking further proof of how good Meiko Satomura is could do worse than give this their time.
Verdict: Three And A Half Stars
Millie McKenzie defeated Audrey Bride
Audrey Bride did a great job of heeling it up and depriving the crowd of Suplex Millie. I’m not hugely familiar with her work, but she played the role well, grabbing a handful of hair at one point in a desperate attempt to not be dropped on the back of her head.
Unfortunately, she got a bit too into trying to wind fans up and would pay the price. A trio of Germans with the final one dropping into a bridge was all it took for Millie to reach the next round. While this wasn’t long enough to be great, it was still entertaining.
Verdict: Two And Three Quarter Stars
Killer Kelly defeated Kris Wolf
I’m a big fan of Kris Wolf wrestling badasses. It’s fun watching the likes of Killer Kelly deal with Wolf’s shenanigans, even if it does mean that Kris’s face meets a selection of boots and elbows.
They did a solid job of blending that intensity with Kris’s antics. At one point, Kris caught Kelly with a knee on the outside, only to follow up by feeding her some beer. Friendliness combined with violence. A mantra that Kelly doesn’t buy into as she didn’t seem to appreciate Michael being popped on her head. She responded by planting him on Wolf instead and then Superkicking the poor pup.
Despite Wolf firing up in the final seconds, she’d end up going down to a Fisherman Buster putting to an end another enjoyable hit of wrestling.
Verdict: Two And A Half Stars
LuFisto defeated Toni Storm
In many ways, this was the classic Toni Storm match. After an even start, LuFisto took control, working over the knee of Storm in an attempt to negate her explosive offence. It was a waste of time because Toni would eventually pop up, forgot about her injury, hit a German, a Hip Attack and set-up for Strong Zero. I’d already inked the result in.
Unfortunately for Toni, that was when Melanie Gray appeared, wandering down the ramp shouting at Storm before throwing the Women’s Title at her. While it was a strange distraction, LuFisto didn’t care. A Burning Hammer was all she needed to pick up the victory.
So, while we ended up with most of Toni Storm’s match, there was a different finish tacked onto the end. It still made this about Storm, though, and, to be honest, I think wXw would be smart to stop doing that. Toni’s a great wrestler, but she has a formula which is in danger of running stale. Taking her out of the spotlight for a while might be a good idea particularly as they’re not the only company shining that light on her.
Verdict: Two And A Quarter Stars
Meiko Satomura defeated Millie McKenzie
The rookie vs the master. Millie came into this one with her fires burning hot as she seemed desperate to prove herself. It gave her the impetus she needed in the early goings as she was able to string together fast-paced bursts of offence, causing as much pain as she could as quickly as possible.
You need more than fire to put down Meiko Satomura. Millie did a great job. She managed to hurt Satomura which is more than most, but it took just one opening for this to flip around. McKenzie went for a Tiger Bomb, and Meiko slipped out. A suplex followed by the Death Valley Bomb seemed to have set up the win. Except, Satomura wanted to prove a point. She locked Millie in the STF and forced her to tap.
Millie McKenzie is set to do a tour of Japan with Meiko’s Sendai Girls promotion and watching this you can see why. She’s eighteen and is already in there holding her own against a certifiable legend. If this is the present, then the future is going to be wonderful.
Verdict: Three And A Half Stars
LuFisto defeated Killer Kelly
LuFisto didn’t wait for the bell, attacking Kelly as she was perched on the top rope. These two had a sprint that I loved earlier in the year, and they picked straight up from that. If you like your wrestling to be strike based, then you’re in for a treat. They were laying into each other.
Sadly, I don’t think they quite reached the level of that previous bout. Although it’s worth pointing out that these matches are all worked under time restrictions and with the caveat that they’ve already wrestled once while LuFisto was going to have to do so again. Expecting them to hit the same intensity as a one-off bout is unfair.
So, instead, I’ll point out that they did still bring it. Even delivering a hot closing stretch as LuFisto kicked out of the Fisherman Buster before rocking Kelly with a straight-up punch. A Package DDT followed by a vicious looking Tiger Driver ’91 sent her to the final.
Verdict: Three And A Quarter Stars
Melanie Gray defeated Session Moth Martina to retain the wXw Women’s Championship
I like Martina. She’s worked hard on a silly gimmick and taken it into companies that it has no place in. Still, I can’t help thinking that wXw would be better keeping her away from title matches. I know she was unbeaten against Gray in singles previous to this, but she’s not a great wrestler while the gimmick makes it hard to buy her as a potential Women’s Champion. The hype package built this as a personal feud, and she still made her way to the ring, beer in hand and grinding on various members of the crowd. That doesn’t scream blood feud.
At least that’s what I was thinking at the start of this match. Because you know what? This was easily my favourite Martina performance. It only went six minutes, but she wrestled it like she cared, throwing elbows and taking risks that we aren’t used to seeing from her. Not that we should forget Gray, she was right there alongside her, helping to put together something that didn’t so much lap my expectations as end up competing in an entirely different race.
Was it a classic? No. And I still think Martina’s place is in the mid-card which is where I suspect she’ll be heading after tapping out to the Melodrama. However, for the short time they got, Session Moth Martina proved that she can raise her game when given a chance. I’ll take the L on that one.
Verdict: Three And A Quarter Stars
Meiko Satomura defeated LuFisto to win Femmes Fatales 2018
wXw had built nice arcs for these two throughout the tournament. Satomura was the honourable warrior, having two competitive matches and raising her opponent’s hand when she won. LuFisto took the opposite path. She was opportunistic, attacking from behind and taking advantage of distractions. Now, in the final, they were slugging it out to see which philosophy reigned supreme.
And when I say slugging it out, I mean slugging it out. LuFisto and Meiko made everything that came before look like a pleasant day down the beach as they exchanged bombs. After brawling into the crowd, LuFisto took control by Powerbombing Satomura onto the apron, and we all know that part of the ring’s reputation.
Meiko Satomura appears to be at her best when she has a monster to slay, though. The more LuFisto hit her, the more fired up she got, battling back and managing to survive the constant barrage of attacks. She was never in control of the match, but she was never out of it either.
As the fans chanted the Japanese woman’s name, LuFisto raised Meiko up for the Burning Hammer. Then, instinct kicked in as she slipped out into a Rear Naked Choke. LuFisto escaped, except now the momentum had turned. A Scorpion Rising followed by the Death Valley Bomb and Satomura was our winner in a fitting conclusion to a fun tournament.
Verdict: Three And Three Quarter Stars
This was a ninety-minute show with eight matches where most of the wrestlers were in the ring more than once. That was always going to affect the quality. However, these women still went out, put on a great tournament and had a fun title fight. It is well worth a watch.