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[1998-07-05-Jd'] Hiromi Yagi vs Sumie Sakai

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Hiromi Yagi, we meet again!! Yagi is a hidden great wrestler and it's always great to see her get a chance to stretch out and work her magic. This was a pretty kickass fight between two girls with legit ability; JD' was pretty judo-centric (they had a judo jacket shootstyle match earlier in the show) and that was felt very strongly in this. Modern day junior workers should study matches like this, as this was fast paced, unpredictable, hard fought, exciting pro wrestling, and every move they did required minimal cooperation. There was no time killing or filler work, both ladies just went for the kill the whole time, always fighting for an armbar or chokehold. I dug the matwork and Sakai adds a lot, and when they weren't fighting like mad for the advantage there were a few neat spots. Yagi is a rare joshi worker who understands how to add meaning to sprint sections by resisting basic spots. Yagi refusing to be thrown makes Sakai following up with a dropkick a lot more logical, Yagi selling the fuck out of her arm added some sense of desperation to her comeback, Yagi going into a bridge and forcing Sakai to elbow her in the stomach is such a simple spot that makes even a simple pin attempt look important. She also knows how to make believable comebacks, as most of the time she would counter with a flash submission, until she had gained enough momentum to hit her big throw, which felt like a big moment. That is not to put down Sakai because she is a badass suplex & submission artist of her own. Textbook finish very well executed. This rocked.

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