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TonyPulis'Cap

[2002-10-13-FWA-British Uprising] James Tighe vs Jack Xavier vs Raj Ghosh

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https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KuV-lietd6k

 

I’ll go into other matches in individual threads but first, a bit of the backstory on the event, where this match is the opener. I wrote about the importance of Revival in a reawakening of the UK wrestling scene at the beginning of the 2000s here: http://prowrestlingonly.com/index.php?/topic/39613-doug-williams-vs-eddie-guerrero-fwa-revival-king-of-england-tournament-02092002/

 

British Uprising was the next important step. Revival had been relatively successful in terms of drawing around 2,000 fans and having the look and feel of a relatively big show, but hadn’t attracted the type of ratings for Bravo, the satellite channel it was broadcast on, to follow it up with a TV deal for the FWA, which was by now the leading UK promotion and that had essentially put on the show. Nevertheless there did seem to be a buzz about the UK scene for the first time in several years, and so the Uprising event was a chance to capitalise on that. Ultimately, the goal was British Uprising to be the big showcase event in the calendar for the company. As I'll chart that sadly wouldn’t happen long term, but the first Uprising show was a really excellent and exciting event that kept the momentum rolling from Revival.

 

As will be discussed in most of the matches from the event I want to highlight, viewed today, it’s very much a show that is ‘of it’s time’ but, and speaking as someone that has watched this show multiple times during the years, I think it’s a really entertaining and fun show with a look and presentation that is pretty much on par with what the top UK promotions are doing now in terms of production. With a ramp, entrance, pyro and lighting, and being in the York Hall, which is a fantastic and historic venue, it all feels pretty big time, especially for 2002. I believe there were around 900 fans in attendance.

 

This opening three way is for the No. 1 contendership to the All England Title which was the FWA’s secondary title. All three were young guys still in their first couple of years in the business and all three I think came through the FWA academy. When I say that the show is very much ‘of it’s time’ then this match is a classic example – it’s very 2002 indy wrestling, with lots of reversals, standoffs and choreographed spots. Your enjoyment of that style may vary, think late ECW early ROH/US indies, but everything they do is at a ridiculous pace and given how young they are and the pressure of being the first match, they hit pretty much everything spot on. There are a lot of three way spots in the match, which while somewhat contrived actually works for largely getting away from the tired trope of two guys in the ring and one guy on the outside. There’s some really impressive stuff they pull off. It is spot to spot to spot at times, but the action never stops and it’s a ton of fun, and it works as the perfect opener for getting the crowd really hot and invested in the show.

 

James Tighe is the winner, which was definitely the right call as he was a guy I thought at the time had a lot of potential, although sadly it never quite happened for him. He had a good look and technical style and was presented as the heir to Doug Williams over the next couple of years, but the knock was that he didn’t have the charisma. That was probably a fair criticism, however when he turned heel a couple of years later I thought he was good in that role and it’s a shame that he seemingly fell out of the business before the boom of the last few years.

 

A really fun match to check out (** ¾)

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