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Capture International is a shootstyle org founded by Koki Kitahara in 1997 and it's even weirder than Kitao Pro. They wrestle on a mat with a barricade around and you can actually grab the barricade to break a submission. They have 2 out of 3 falls matches and some kind of point system which apparently punishes tag partners when they run in to break a submission. It's roster is a pretty random mix of indy undercarers and martial artists. It's roughly 9000% japanese pro wrestling and produces some really violent and entertaining matches.

There is not much footage of this... a total of 3 TV episodes and 2 old videos on Kitaharas YouTube channel. Maybe if I talk about it, more will show  up?

Capture 10/5/2002

  1. Teruhiko Iwashita vs. Hayato Minami

  2. Basara vs. Jiraiya

  3. Masayuki Mineno vs. Johta

  4. Koki Kitahara & Daiyu Kawauchi vs. Shoichi Ichimiya & Kazunobu Nakamura

Minami/Iwashita was a nifty undercard shootstyle bout. Won't make you forget U-Style but probably a Top 10 japanese match if it happened tod- ah I'll shut up. Really dug the tenacity and struggle over everything while keeping a steady pace. Highlights include Minami locking Iwashitas arm behind his back and surviving a nasty guillotine while his face turned blue. They have the MMA gloves but aside from a few body punches and low kicks they stick to grappling. Neat finish with several cool armlock variations before one forces the tap.

Basara-Jiraya – OF COUUUURSEEEEE this fed has masked guys working undercard quasi shootstyle matches. And what a threat to see Yume Factory boy BASARA again. He seemed to have gained some confidence looking quite aggressive at times. However, not having a ring took away his strongest aspects here – his great powerslam and frogsplash. Jiraya is a japanese wrestler who apparently spent a lot of time in Mexico. Not that you noticed much lucha in his style here, as he was rocking the kickpads and working for armbars on the ground. Neither of these guys is a wrestling master but there were enough smacks to keep this entertaining and the finish was cool.

Mineno vs. Johta (or Jyota?) was a boxing gloves match because every japanese sleaze indy company has an annoying guy on the booking team who constantly goes „But where is the booooooxing match?“. They actually do some grappling with double leg takedowns, armbars and suplexes but it was of course limited. However these two guys absolutely slaughtered eachother in the standup with awesome fast punches and spin kicks. No pussy shit here for sure. Plus you get the fun aspect of guys awkwardly falling into the guardrails when getting kicked. This is rounds so they work some actually cool „safed by the bell“ moments. I am stoked to check out these boys in a match with regular MMA gloves.

 

 
I assume the main event is like the quintessential Capture match. Lots of wild swinging punches and kicks that connect with full force. Kawauchi, who I saw in his debut match at a 1998 KAGEKI show against Masakazu Fukuda would go on to work Osaka Pro as Hideyoshi and is now grizzled veteran GENKAI in Kyushi Pro, so he has quite the history of japanese indy wrestling. Kawauchi is good as the energetic youngster here with explosive takedowns and pummeling violently on the ground. Ichimiya who is some comedy character in DDT looks credible here as a heavyweight shooter. His super violent, quick assault on Kawauchi in the 2nd fall using the guardrail may have been the highlight of the match. His extremely vocal selling also added some more grit. Kitahara is as you expect. His punches and kicks were Ikeda level but I was also surprised how brutal his chokes (or choke setups) felt. He also got his "Kitahara is a bastard" moment when he kicked Ichimiya in his bandaged arm. The matwork here is mostly working punches from mount and has a really smothering feel to it, though there is the occasional submission attempt and the finish is a neat submission counter. The match is short enough so it totally works.

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Capture 12/8/2002

 

  1. Masake Sawai vs. Hayato Minami

  2. Takayuki Nakazato vs. Seiji Nakamura

  3. Cry vs. Jiraiya

  4. Koki Kitahara & Johta vs. Nobuyuki Kurashima & Masayuki Mineno

 

The opener was about 4 of decent shootstyle grappling. Again liked Minamis tenacity aspecially when he was again working for an armlock from underneath. Nothing much to get from this kind of match though.

In the 2nd match is actually a guy whose name sounds like Seiji Nakamura, not Kazunobu Nakamura as Lynchs matchlist says. It's pretty much irrelevant as Pancrase shorts wearing Nakazato armbars him in about 5 seconds.

Cry vs. Jiraiya was some utterly bizarre shit. Cry is a masked guy in all yellow who does some weird exaggerated mannerism comedy while the folks who bought tickets for a CAPTURE show sit there and stare in silence. After about 10 minute of somewhat awkward and not at all good shootstyle grappling Cry gets the win. Not a good night to be Jiraiya.

 

Well, I assume the main event is what everyone in attendance bought their tickets for. Exactly what Capture promises, 4 guys just beating eachother silly in savage ways. The Mineno/Johta sections were really fun with both guys throwing fast hands and kicks, all ultra stiff of course. Then you had the heavyweights – both Kitahara and Kurashima looked like they were twice the size of either Johta or Mineno – bullying the little guys around. Kurashima is a MUGA boy and he mostly sticks to matwork here, altough he does punish opponents with some brutal throws and inventive submissions. At one point he did a Backlund lift from an armbar into almost a One Winged Angel. Kitahara was an absolute bastard once again, stomping on Minenos face and sucker punching him from behind. Match is really good shootstyle in parts but starts breaking down into chaos towards the end with the referee losing control over who is legal and who isn't, so you would get Kurashima tackling Kitahara while Mineno would try to kick him in the face. Still this is what Capture promise and each fall had a great finish.

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Capture 3/8/2003

  1. Yasuhiro Yamagami vs. Masaki Sawai

  2. Koki Kitahara vs. Nobuyuki Kurashima

  3. Daiyu Kawauchi vs. Jiraiya

  4. Johta vs. Masayuki Mineno

  5. Kitahara vs. Daiyu Kawauchi

 

Yamagami/Sawai – Yamagami is bigger and aggressive and punches and kicks Sawai some. Not much going on in this match as Sawai had his hands full trying to defend himself and gets caught and tapped quickly anyways.

Kitahara/Kurashima was a nifty little battle. Kurashima is naturally at home on the mat and Kitahara is actually willing to work the mat against him. However Kitahara has the advantage because he is a bastard. Kitahara brutally kicks him in the jaw while exchanging leglocks and follows with more boots to the face. Kurashima makes some desperation takedown attempts until Kitahara catches (captures) him for the tap.

Kawauchi/Jiraya sounded cool on paper if it had been that aggressive Kawauchi from the previous show. Instead he mostly let Jiraya grapple him some before some shotais finally woke him up and he finished the match with the lift and drop and then a shootstyle Jackhammer. Pretty throwaway match aside from the cool finish.

Johta/Mineno was another rounds match only this time they had MMA gloves. Why the rounds? Hey, look these ring girls (mat girls?) are totally HOT! They got Capture International style bikinis!!! The match was really good as these two just kick the hell out of eachother and also have good grappling and throws. Basically the worlds greatest worked Shooto. It works because there's no back and forth strike trading, just two guys throwing and evading really fast and aggressively. Little premature ending as this was only half as long as their boxing gloves match, but the finish was pretty damn brutal so what the hell.

Kitahara/Kawauchi was basically just a gritty uncooperative streetfight. Kawauchi was more aggressive and overzealous here so Kitahara just absolutely beat his ass in between taunting him. Good stuff that the fans got really into and I hope this isn't the last I see of Capture International.

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This is the last Capture footage which is from Kitaharas YouTube channel. There is also a highlight video which has more clips that seem to be from matches in the 90s. I have no idea why you would have this stuff filmed and leave no trace of distribution but god knows what is going on in a guy like Kitaharas head when they start a promotion like this.

Masashi Aoyagi vs. Nihao (Capture 7/4/1999)

This is our sole taste of 90s Capture International. It's Aoyagi working a somewhat regular undercard match against Kitahara's boy Nihao (who would go on to be in U-Style – CAPTURE can get you somewhere). Aoyagi working holds isn't quite the same as Aoyagi working a crazy spectacle, but I probably liked this better than Aoyagis undercard work in Wrestle Yume Factory. Aoyagi sure does give Nihao the business with stiff kicks and punches to the mid section and there is one truely brutal near KO. The finish is a really nice moment too. I didn't get a ton from Nihao here but he looked fine.
 

Koki Kitahara & YUSAKU vs. Tomohiro Ishii & DAISAKU (Capture 5/30/2000)

Oh but this match is a goodie. You have Tomohiro Ishii pre-Choshuism and CAPTURE boy since the beginning, aswell as the unseen should-have-been-a-star DAISAKU (Shimoda) and his twin brother YUSAKU (Shimoda and half a dozen other names) rocking the gloves and ready to throw down. I'll never understand what motivates these indy guys to get punched in the face in a basement in front of 70 people but I'll always enjoy watching. This goes about 6 minutes and it's basically all 4 guys kicking the crap out of eachother. Really liked the lumpy boys who like to kick hard sections between Ishii and YUSAKU and the attempted fraticide between YUSAKU and DAISAKU was pretty brutal aswell. Daisaku has some huge kicks and thai knees while Yusaku sticks to more traditional pro wrestling stuff punches and knees stuff executed with a CAPTURE sized vicious streak. Also really liked Ishii in his Kawada wannabe tights flying at Kitahara with huge kicks. By no means is this intelligent or well rounded pro wrestling, it's arguably shootstyle in it's most primitive form, and that's why I love it and want to see every single match in this style ever done. So Kitahara if you're reading this there's someone who cares, and Kitahara's neighbours if you are reading this please break into his garage and steal all his VHS tapes for us and don't get spin kicked in the face doing that.

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