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Found 35 results

  1. This match is for the Beyond the SEA tag titles held by BORDERLESS (Yoshiko and Yamashita.) I hadn't been impressed at all with BORDERLESS so far as a team but they really clicked here and this was by far their best match so far. It doesn't hurt that Arisa puts in a tremendous performance here as she is slowly starting to put together another run of top quality performances. Sasamura is a K-Dojo trainee that showed some promise. Hopefully, she starts making tape on a regular basis. This is just a great main-event tag. ****1/4
  2. This is a tie-breaker for top spot in Catch the WAVE tournament's Crazy Block and a subsequent spot in the tournament final. As a whole, this match does a pretty good job of maintaining a back-and-forth between these two throughout the match. Although, that does lead to some less than realistic transitions as one of them are force to quickly shake off a big shot in order to get back on offense. The match doesn't feel like a my turn/your turn type though, and it shows as the crowd gets into the drama during the finishing run. This might have been something special if they had structured it a little better but even as is it's highly entertaining. ***3/4
  3. This is the last match in the Crazy Block of the Catch the WAVE tournament. Both women came in tied on points so whoever won this match would move on to the final. Yamashita controls the most of the first half of the match with her power. Nozaki, though, chips away through some nice counters eventually locking in her sleeper to level the score. The finishing run starts out even but turns in favour of Yamashita when she locks in a sleeper of her own that Nozaki barely escapes. Yamashita tries to follow up with a Splash Mountain but Nozaki escapes leading to a draw which forces a tie-breaker. The match did a nice job of building up drama to the final few minutes. ***3/4
  4. This is the main event of the second night of the Catch the WAVE tournament. This match is just a straight forward slobberknocker as these two spend pretty much the entire match going right straight at each other with some nasty shots. Ohka has stepped up the last few months as she has picked up the pace of her matches and relied on hard hitting strikes. Yamashita looked the best that she has in awhile mainly because the match perfectly fit her strengths as a worker. Another strong match for a tournament that has been really good so far. ****
  5. This is the first match for both in this year's Catch the WAVE tournament. It a nice follow up to the title match that they had in September of last year. The both of them do what they do best, ASUKA breaking out some nice highspots and Yamashita hitting her big power moves. The finish is really well worked, just a very good back and forth exchange of finishers with Yamashita getting the win with a Splash Mountain. ***1/2
  6. Regina di WAVE Championship #1 Contendership Tournament - Semi-Finals: Nagisa Nozaki vs. Rina Yamashita This is the most impressive Nozaki has looked since returning. She was going at it with Rina. Her movements and emotes are always striking to me, and she is very calculating with that sleeper hold. Yamashita held the match together, and they crafted a great story around Nozaki's dangerous sleeper. ***1/2
  7. This is Sareee's last match as a member of the SEAdLINNNG roster. You can tell how much she meant to the promotion by the fact that she comes out to no fanfare and jobs to a simple lariat from Yoshiko. Otherwise, this is a super fun joshi trios match. They keep up the pace of the match up the whole way with some nice double/triple teams included. The sequences between Sareee/Kobayashi and Mizunami/Yamashita were particularly impressive. ***3/4
  8. This is the third match that this two have had this year. They split their two matches earlier this year in the Catch the WAVE tournament with Yamashita winning in the final over Ohata and subsequently taking the Regina di WAVE title from Ryo Mizunami, Ohata's tag partner in Avid Rival. The match starts out as a matchup of power versus technique. Ohata gets some early success by trapping Yamashita's right arm in various submissions which limits Yamashita's main offensive weapon. This force Yamashita to be more careful with how she uses her arm. She adjusts how she applies her sleeper by turning so that more of her body weight is on Ohata and she's more selective as to when she uses her lariats. Ohata does control a fair bit of match by having a lot of smart counters to Yamashita's attacks but in turn Yamashita always has the trump card of being able to hit the smaller Ohata really hard. Towards the finish though, Ohata starts to build to much momentum and hits too many of her big moves allowing her to put away Yamashita. Just an amazing match that managed to use simple story telling in an incredibly effective result. Easily the joshi match of the year, maybe even the last couple of decades. ****3/4
  9. More NEW-TRA? Oh yeah! Bonus points here for the reuniting of Yamashita and Kobayashi, who had a fun youngster team in late '15/early '16. Kadokura looked great here again and should seriously get talked about more as one of the top youngsters in joshi. The real highlight here is the matchup of Yamashita and Iroha. The two of them show fantastic chemistry here and it's a shame that Yamashita loses the Regina di WAVE title in just a few days as a title match between the two of them could be something really special. As for this match, it goes a little too short to be great, as it feels like the match ends just as it's start to ramp up. Still worth checking out though. ***3/4
  10. ASUKA's reward for her big win over Yumi Ohka at last month's anniversary show was a title shot at the current Regina Di WAVE champ, Yamashita. This was ASUKA's best performance yet as she really showed off her athleticism and mixed in some spectacular highspots. Her selling still needs some work though. This was yet another strong, big match performance Yamashita. She is pretty much at the point that she should be mentioned in the top tier of workers in joshi. A very strong title match from two women who keep improving. ****
  11. Hikaru Shida vs. Rina Yamashita If Rina wins with the Splash Mountain, she will inherit the move from Dynamite Kansai (who was watching on commentary). Shida ambushes Rina at the start and tries to hit the move herself -- this was the highlight of the match. Shida's workover could have been better, and Rina's comeback felt completely empty. The pacing was off, too. Disappointing match. They had a much better one in WAVE last year. bad
  12. Regina di WAVE Championship: Rina Yamashita © vs. Yoshiko It feels surreal to watch a joshi event that takes place in the same venue Okada and Tiger Mask W fought in. This borrowed a lot from the SEAdLINNNG match, but since this is Rina's turf she was the focus of this story. The action was intense and hard-hitting, and the closing lariat battle was epic. ****1/4
  13. This is a really fun trios match. A lot of that is because both Avid Rival (Mizunami & Ohata) and Over Sun (Ohka & Miyazaki) are really good, established teams so that allows both Yamashita and ASUKA to be bit players. They do spend a share of the match building up the Ohka/ASUKA match for the upcoming anniversary show. ASUKA, the first transgender wrestler to be part of a joshi group, looks good if a bit of a generic joshi high-flyer. Good showcase for WAVE's talent. ***3/4
  14. This is the title match that Yamashita received after winning this year's edition of WAVE's Catch the WAVE tournament. These two have had a rivalry that goes back the last couple of years to when Yamashita made her debut with the company which was around the same time that Mizunami made her return from being out over a year with an injury. After taking the first minutes or so to exchange holds, this turns right into what you think that it would be, a slugfest. These two spend most of the match running into one another in super physical ways. Both of them sell the toll of the match tremendously, this isn't your typical Japanese "Strong Style" match where both wrestlers beat the hell out of each other then "hulk up" for the finishing run. This match is more about trying to out last your opponent while nailing her with a hard enough shot to put her down for good. Fantastic match! Another one to add to the sizable list of great matches that both of these women have had this year. ****1/4
  15. This is a rematch of the 10 minute draw that these two had back in March. Chihiro is just an absolute beast here, dominating early on with matwork then making an awesome surging comeback. Yamashita works a smart, tactical match in response. She picks her spots well while focusing her offense on trying to slow Chihiro down. The finish has some very physical back and forth leading toward a draw. Best match so far this year for both women. ****1/4
  16. Sekigun (Alex Lee, Mayumi Ozaki & Yumi Ohka) vs. MK4 (AKINO & Sonoko Kato) & Rina Yamashita This was highly enjoyable, and easily one of my favorite OZ matches of the year so far. It's Ozaki's homecoming in Saitama and the match had an energetic vibe. Yamashita was on fire; I dug her lariat exchange with POLICE. Ohka looked really great, knocking everyone down with her deadly boots. Everyone had their moment and delivered a great main event! ****
  17. This is the final of the 2017 Catch the WAVE tourney. These two had a great match a month earlier in the block stage so I was excited to see a rematch. Ohata does the smart thing in the early going by grounding Yamashita to keep her from using her power. As a result, Yamashita has to be smarter about her comebacks as she simple can't bullrush her way into control of the match. A nice contrast from their harder hitting match from the month before. ****
  18. Rina Yamashita vs. Yoshiko These two are like alternate universe versions of each other, so they make for great rivals. The finish is a lariat war where they're just trading heavy smacks, knocking the bajeezus out of one another. The selling and execution made it one of the more compelling lariat exchanges I've seen in a while; the blood from Rina's mouth splashes across her face in a sweet visual. ****1/2
  19. This was one of the most anticipated matches during the block stage of this year's Catch the WAVE tournament, as it pitted two of joshi's top young rising stars. This gets off to an intense start, as you would expect with these two. Yamashita manages to gain control by getting a Scorpion Death Lock on Sareee that does a number on her back. Sareee tries to fight back but realizes that a smarter strategy would be to go after Yamashita's arm. To counter back, Yamashita starts going for a sleeper in the hopes to cut down Sareee's feistiness. The draw does come out of nowhere but it seems fitting give that these two were going at each other so hard that they never even noticed the time. Great stuff. ****
  20. This match is fairly similar to Kodakura's previous match with Misaki Ohata. Yamashita spends most of the match working her over while Kodakura still manages to pick her spots to stay competitive. Yamashita seems to be on her way to a win but runs out of time. Still, this is another impressive performance for Kodakura. ***3/4
  21. On paper, this looked like one of the best matchups for the block stage of this year's Catch the WAVE tourney and they did not disappoint. Surprisingly, Ohata is able to match the physicality Yamashita with the help of a quick attack at the start. Yamashita manages to make some comebacks but Ohata keeps varying her offense which allows her to keep regaining control of the match. She eventually gets the win with her awesome Skyblue Suplex. ****
  22. Chihiro Hashimoto & DASH Chisako vs. Hikaru Shida & Rina Yamashita Shida-sama & Yamashita have a parejas increíbles-esque dynamic in this match, and that made things very interesting. They're attacking each other, making aggressive tags, Shida tries to use Yamashita as a weapon; but, they still prove to be a cohesive, well-oiled duo. The hard-hitting segments between Hash and Rina were awesome, and there's a shinai spot here that was topnotch slapstick. DASH reprises her role as Chihiro's designated FIP, but she gets the fall this time! And so continues the endless Shida/DASH feud. ***3/4
  23. This is a two out of three falls trios match that's designed to set up the OZ title match between Hiroyo and Kagetsu at the Korakuen show next month. I thought everyone in this match looked really good, even Katsu who has been a big disappointment since returning about a year ago. They kept the flow of the match going throughout more than likely because they didn't do the mandatory crowd brawling that happens in OZ Academy. Like the tag title match in January, this is another showcase of what OZ Academy should be. ****
  24. This was the opener of the Joshi Pro show that WAVE put on to feature younger wrestlers with all of the matches having 10 minute time limits. The match is pretty much what you would expect from these two at this point. It's super physical with a lot of power spots. That works out well as they manage to have the crowd fairly hot for the end of the time limit. Certainly hopeful that there will be a more meaningful rematch in the near future. ***3/4
  25. ICE×∞ Championship: Risa Sera © vs. Rina Yamashita Risa Sera, Sera Risa, I don't know... she doesn't do it for me, especially when being booked at this level. I thought the strike battles in this were nice and heated; Sera was laying in those palm thrusts. Yamashita is one of my favorites and I'm glad she got to main event Korakuen Hall. She had nice moments like the suplex on the ramp and those awesome lariats. But then we get to the ugly... Sera's diving somato is particularly awful because her opponent has to stand there like a doofus while she hesitates to jump. There's nothing worse than a 'finisher set-up' that looks super phony and contrived and makes your opponent look like a moron for taking it. You could say that Yamashita was 'groggy', but Sera's offense is not convincing enough to have you believe that. This was average. **1/2