I’ve been overdosing on Tag League recently, so the chance to watch some wrestling that I knew I’d enjoy was a much-needed relief. We’re approaching the end of the year and, more importantly for TJPW, the start of the next one which brings with it their big January 4th show. The build to that started here so, if like me, you’re going to be there, you can begin to get excited.
Mizuki, Yuki Aino and Mirai Maiumi defeated Yuki Kamifuku, Yuna Manase and Mahiro Kiryu
Kamiyu and Manase’s cheating was causing real issues for Mahiro. She had to explain to Kamiyu that eye-poking was not allowed before demonstrating that stomping on people was much better. Then she’d go on to give them both a telling off when they entered the ring while she was the legal woman. It was all very amusing.
And this was an enjoyable opener that flew by before Aino pinned Mahiro with a Stalling Side Suplex. We got some cool hoss action between Manase and Mirai while Mizuki is always fun to watch. It was one of those matches that clicks perfectly, and while it’s never going to go down as something special, you’ll watch it with a smile on your face.
Verdict: Three Stars
Miyu Yamashita defeated Pom Harajuku and Haruna Neko
Pom and Neko considered a couple of sneak attacks, but Miyu spotted them each time, and a death glare returned them to their corner. It was a fear that caused them some issues towards the end when Haruna was in a Yamashita submission, but Pom was too scared to break it up.
Despite being (quite rightly) terrified of getting their heads kicked in, the rookie team had an excellent game plan. They tagged in and out as much as possible while trying to make Miyu dizzy. If she can’t stand up straight, she can’t kick them in the head.
Unfortunately, she’s Yamashita, and while it worked for a while, she did eventually get round to doing some head removing. If you’re a fan of Miyu being a badass, but also showing how incredibly funny she can be, this match will be perfect for you.
Verdict: Three Stars
Misao defeated Suzume
If you’re new to TJPW and aren’t aware of the Hyper Misao storyline, I recommend reading this excellent summary of it from DDT English. It played into this and the Sakisama match.
Suzume impressed me in this one. I believe she’s only been wrestling a few months, but she looks at home in the ring. While the action was, for the most part, a squash, there is a naturalness to the way she moves around that a lot of rookies lack, and suggests she could grow into something great.
Misao eventually tapped her out for a convincing victory, and there wasn’t much to this, but both women did what they needed to.
Verdict: Two And A Half Stars
Hikari Noa and Mina Shirakawa defeated Maki Itoh and Raku
Maki Itoh’s facial expressions are great. Whether it was her bemused amusement at Raku’s antics, her apoplectic rage at Mina and Hakari’s cheating or her smug satisfaction when she thought she had the victory, cranking a Crab on Noa, you can track her emotions through a match.
Unfortunately for her, Noa survived that Crab and would go on to get the win, setting herself up to challenge Itoh. Hikari has impressed me whenever I’ve seen her recently, and with them deciding to do it on January 4th, I am delighted with that decision.
Outside of that, it was a pretty standard tag, enjoyable but probably not particularly memorable. Raku continues to improve and had a decent back and forth with Noa at the end, teasing the submission victory with a Choke. While it was nothing you need to see, it was an easy watch.
Verdict: Two And Three Quarter Stars
Rika Tatsumi vs Sakisama went to a no contest
As mentioned above, this match was a continuation of the Hyper Misao story with Rika attempting to save her from the corrupting influence of Sakisama.
Rika was on course to have a decent little match with Sakisama too. She went after her legs, trying to negate those kicks and get the submission win. It was well-worked, but just as they were starting to build things, the angle took over. A ref bump brought Misao into the ring and chaos broke out as an errant knee took Sakisama out and left the two former friends to brawl. It got so heated that Rika even gave the ref a taste of her displeasure when he tried to stop it.
That all led to Sakisama telling Misao to sort her shit out (not quite how she phrased it, but you can check out DDT English for a more accurate translation) before they set-up a showdown between Misao and Rika for Yokohama. The match suffered for the angle, but the angle was good.
Verdict: Two And Three Quarter Stars
MiraClians (Yuka Sakazaki and Shoko Nakajima) defeated Miu Watanabe and Nodoka Tenma
If the only reason you watch this match is to see Tenma dancing to the ring, then you have done a good thing with your day.
It set the theme too, as this was a load of fun. You could tell the wrestlers were enjoying themselves, and it was hard not to get caught up in that. Plus, it had my favourite hoss, Miu Watanabe, dishing out gunshot chops and slamming both opponents at the same time.
We also got the roll-up that caused Chris Brookes to relinquish his roll-up crown as Shoko and Yuka combined to get the three. There’s not much more to say, to be honest, it was a delight. What more do you need?
Verdict: Three And A Half Stars
Best Regards is a show which defies star ratings. Yes, I didn’t throw them at anything on this card, but it was also a brilliant watch. It’s under two hours, so it flies by, and everything on it is a load of fun. I can’t point to one particular thing that was outstanding, but it all made me smile, which on a cold November day when my heads a bit all over the place is exactly what I needed.
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