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TonyPulis'Cap

[2003-10-18-FWA-British Uprising II] Flash Barker vs Hade Vansen

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This was set to be Zebra Kid defending his All England Title against Flash Barker, a match originally scheduled for Hotwired the month before. That match never really got started due to the appearance of the recently fired Hade Vansen turning up to spoil the show and subsequently getting chucked out of the building. As you’ll see Vansen is very much the focus here.

 

After Flash Barker’s entrance there is an announcement that Zebra Kid is not at the building and so the title can’t be defended. I’m not sure if this was a legitimate no show or storyline (Zebra Kid is back at the beginning of next year, although there is a five month gap in shows after British Uprising) but it means no match which the crowd is understandably unhappy about. However, the ‘fired’ Vansen is in the crowd and demands to be put in the match and for the All England Title to be on the line. In storyline terms the FWA commissioner Dino Scarlo had stood down so without him there the FWA officials at ringside agree to Vansen’s demands to ensure the fans get a title match. Not too much of this makes complete sense – why would they agree to these demands from someone they fired? And why does Vansen just happen to have his wrestling gear on under his clothes? (well, there is that maxim of always bring your gear) – but it all plays into the worked/shoot angle the company had been running with Vansen, and as we’ll see going into 2004 they had big plans and a big push for him in the works.

 

The outside the ring/angle stuff is sadly much more interesting than what we eventually get within the match though. Flash has been a really consistent performer on the roster in 2003 but with the much less experienced Vansen having to lead large portions of the match there’s just nothing of any real substance or coherence to get invested in. Vansen was a guy with the look, and who had a lot of heel charisma but even when getting more experienced, struggled putting a match outside of the big spots together. He’s got some nice kicks – his background was in karate – but too often they involve incredibly convoluted ways in getting to them and what few transitions there are here are very awkward.

 

The early stages are Vansen trying his best to avoid Flash, knowing he’s largely overmatched in a fair fight which leads to a chase on the outside and Barker putting his foot through one of the mesh guardrails attempting a super kick. Vansen follows this up by going after the injured leg with a chair before some pretty uninspired leg work on the inside. Flash makes a brief comeback but ends up crumpling after a leap frog and coming down on the injured leg. The finish is pretty surprising – both in that it’s clean and Flash submits – with Vansen winning with a knee bar. It’s a logical finish but the match before is non-descript. (* ½)

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