WCPW : Pro Wrestling World Cup Round of 16

So its finally down to the last 16. Competitors from all round the world, kind of, have competed and we have some absolutely amazing matches to sit through.

Gonna be a good show.

TRAVIS BANKS vs MIKE BAILEY
Winner : Mike Bailey

We start the night with a interesting match up. Personally you all know I think that Travis Banks is one of the most underrated wrestlers in the UK at the moment, the guy has such a flexible style that he can keep his opponents grounded or match them for speed. Was interested to see how Bailey would fare against Banks.

Was happy that he seemed to have done his home work and managed to stop the pre-match attack from Banks. Whilst Bailey was able to take the offense to Banks its the unique style of Banks that meant that he didn’t keep the momentum going for long.

It was a battle of kicks though. Bailey’s martial art kicks were matched viciously by Banks own. Any time Banks kicks people it makes me happy.

Bit of a upset in the very first match with Bailey going on over Banks but also very interesting because its a new face we’ll get to see much more of. Happy to see how far Bailey goes.

BAD BONES vs PENTA EL ZERO M
Winner : Penta El Zero M

Now this is a interesting match up.

Before the German Qualifiers WCPW had shown Bad Bones the big bad mercenary everyone should be scared of but in Germany he was the smallest dude in both matches and much of the time was on his back foot. It was like seeing a completely different Bad Bones so going back to him vs Penta I don’t know what Bad Bones we’ll get.

In the early moments of the match it was normal WCPW Bad Bones. In charge, slow and trying to tear apart Penta.

Penta is truly scary when he gets going, his match against Rampage showed that. I don’t think I can ever take Bad Bones seriously again after the German Qualifiers then seeing him against Penta. It wasn’t the most engaging of matches, I do love Penta but also find it difficult to get too excited about his matches as strange as that sounds, but it was like two mountains squaring off against each other.

The fear factor puts Bad Bones down. Penta goes through.

THE PRESTIGE vs WAR MACHINE & MARTY SCURLL
Winners : War Machine & Marty Scurll

So the remaining Prestige members, Gunn, El Ligero and Hendry team up against War Machine and the Villain.

I think War Machine and Marty Scurll are my new favourite thing. When they fist bumped him and looked like they were about to break his fist I just laughed, it was like two giants forgetting they were hanging out with a human.

Not only that though just look at this match up. It was a thing of beauty.

After a few false starts we finally got Scurll and El Ligero squaring off. It really is the only time I’ll be sad to see Scurll in the ring purely because I love seeing Hanson just MURDER people in the ring and I wanted to see El Ligero get what he deserves.

It doesn’t matter how many times I see Rowe pick up Hanson and throw him at people it always makes me happy. It was kind of sad that it went crazy on the outside of the ring just as War Machine were getting going because I could honestly sit there watching them manhandle people including each other all day long. One move that I’m never going to get over is Hanson running from corner to corner SCREAMING. He doesn’t look tired at all and this time he did it with El Ligero on his back. Again the handspring elbow from Hanson, I’ve seen it in every match I’ve seen him in but I still can’t believe he can do it. Hanson is one of the craziest guys.

After a crazy match it was the Villain and War Machine that won. I’m so happy we got this match, it was fantastic. When the celebrations were going on War Machine left Marty and the Prestige went to work beating the hell out of him. It was sad but makes me excited because I’m so hoping we get Scurll with the belt soon.

LUCKY KID vs HIROMU TAKAHASHI
Winner : Hiromu Takahashi

I was so happy to hear Lucky Kid be called a underdog because I was hoping it meant he’d win against Takahashi and that was the moment I knew my heart belonged to this crazy German guy. He out weirded Takahashi, he waved to Daryl and he was really freakin’ good all match long.

Takahashi is just on another planet, and I don’t mean his personality, but he really made Lucky Kid look great. I don’t know the extent of either of their linguistic skills but there were a few things they did that were just perfectly done to show off the crazy personality of Lucky Kid. The “Sitting confrontation” or whatever it was called when they tried to out creepy smile each other was one of the most perfect bits of story telling they could do. I just loved it.

The match was my favourite of the Round of 16 so far, it was the one I was looking forward to the most in the first place. The second Takahashi came down for his qualifying match I wanted to see this match so I’m so happy I got to see it.

My heart broke after the second Time Bomb BECAUSE LUCKY KID KICKED OUT OF ONE and Lucky Kid lost. It was a fucking fantastic match, hard to see how anything could top that it very honestly did not have a right to be that good but it possibly will steal the show. Such a well matched pairing, such a fantastic match up.

WCPW keep bringing back Lucky Kid please.

ANGELICO vs RICOCHET
Winner : Ricochet

This was a pretty fun match. Perfectly matched pairing and the match was just like a piece of art.

I can’t get over how tall Angelico is and how he moves like a snake. He’s like one of those tube dudes Bayley has, he doesn’t look like he has a spine in his body. He just moves so effortlessly, which Ricochet does too but he’s a smaller guy. You don’t expect for someone with so much body to be able to look as good as someone like Ricochet, usually they look kind of awkward but he moves like water.

Bradshaw at one point said it was absorbing and that was exactly what it was. It was such a wonderful match up and watching both of them matching each unique move after the other was jaw dropping. You didn’t want to take your eyes off the match up, whilst I was tweeting a load through all the matches this one I just sat staring at.

The only thing I didn’t like was Angelico’s finisher. Its a ugly looking move in the first place and the amount of times that he went for it and it was reversed was starting to bore. You kind of wanted something nicer to look at or at least not have it done like three or four times.

Honestly need to watch a helluva lot more Lucha Underground because I think I’ve fallen in love with the way Angelico moves.

JOE COFFEY / ADAM BLAMPIED

So Michael Elgin had to pull out, the question since Adam Blampied announced it on YouTube earlier in the week has been what is going to happen to Coffey. Well Joe Coffey decided to come down and tell us that Elgin was scared of him and he had the night off.

Thankfully Blampied didn’t let him have a night off so brought in Joseph Conners to fight him.

JOE COFFEY vs JOSEPH CONNERS
Winner : Joseph Conners

Conners…. They managed to get Conners back. Even if for one night only that just makes me so very happy. I saw Joseph Conners against Cody Rhodes back along live and my love for the man just grew 100 times more. I might not have seen WCPW live from the beginning but even I knew how big this was for them to have him back even if for one night only.

The match was everything you wanted. Conners was on Coffey from the second the bell rang and Coffey had to use his strength advantage to just over power him.

It was a very back and forth match and the great thing was you were always thinking about how Coffey was going to win because, you know WWE won’t let us have Conners for more then one show surely?!

THEN JOSEPH CONNERS WINS AND HE’S FACING TAKAHASHI AND MY LITTLE HEART BURST.

All the Prestige is now out of the World Cup…

KENNY WILLIAMS vs KUSHIDA
Winner : Kushida

The battle of Back to the Future geeks. Man am I happy with this match up too.

It was a fantastic match but I do have to admit that I watched this whole thing after getting home from a late shift and at like 2:30am I brought my laptop downstairs to watch this match and boil a egg. The fact that I started singing to my egg to hurry up and boil kind of points to it not really being the most interesting of matches.

Like a match can be fantastic and not engaging. Angelico vs Ricochet was absorbing, I watched Lucky Kid vs Takahashi twice because I loved it so much, but whilst every time I watched it something amazing was happening like Kushida rolling Williams around trying to get his submission on him or the two of them just kicking each other, I never felt the magic click. Even when the eggs had boiled and I was waiting for them to cool down I was writing this because I felt the match had gone on a little too long.

Now I LOVED the look of this match on paper and adore both guys but I just don’t personally think they clicked for me. I don’t know if the styles clashed a little or they were too similar.

Still both of them are absolutely amazing and it was still a high class match.

A Back to the Future kicks out the last Scot in the competition. Both Japanese competitors go through. Kushida vs either Lethal or ZSJ? Now that I am excited for.

ZACK SABRE JR vs JAY LETHAL
Winner : Zack Sabre Jr

The complete opposite of the match before. Maybe not as fantastic a match but a very engaging match with a very focused and dangerous ZSJ, who I’ve felt like I haven’t seen for a long time and even forgot he was in the Round of 16, and a strong story part way through the match of a injured limb being targeted by the WORST wrestler in the world to be given a injured limb.

ZSJ’s wrestling is so unique in its way, so beautiful to watch but when he zoned in on Lethal’s arm it became more then just beautiful to watch. It became painful and uncomfortable. It was amazing to watch though.

You became so involved in the match, you always tend to in ZSJ matches because you just wait breathlessly to see how he’s going to bend his opponent next, in seeing if Lethal can fight through the pain and find a way to beat ZSJ one handedly. The fact that ZSJ REVERSED a elbow drop from the top rope just made me love him.

Two of the best in the world and it showed. It was the cross arm breaker reversal from the Lethal Injection that won it for ZSJ. Great match.

WILL OSPREAY vs REY MYSTERIO
Winner : Will Ospreay

I didn’t like the match as much as I thought I would. I giggled every time that Bradshaw told us its one of the best matches we’d ever seen. So many times it seemed really messy, they didn’t work as well together as Ricochet and I’m not sure why. Like there was the cool move in the corner on the top rope when Ospreay had Mysterio up in the Crucifix but Mysterio reversed it into a hurricanarana from the top rope instead but it was the ugliest looking thing ever and looked really badly mishit. There were a few moments like that.

When they did hit it off it was everything you wanted from a match between the two but I have to admit to never really being a Mysterio fan so finding it quite dull. He’s one of those wrestlers that I know is one of the best in the world but I’ve never been able to get interested in seeing him perform. Preferred all the matches we’ve seen with him in and personally only stayed as interested in the match as I was because of Ospreay who is one of a few wrestlers who just captivate me every time he’s in the ring.

Dunno why I feel that way about Ospreay and not Mysterio but there you go.

Loved him countering the 619 by grabbing hold of Rey’s legs though, its one of those moves I absolutely hate for no real reason, I just do, so always good to see it blocked.

With Will going through England now have somehow managed to get THREE competitors through to the Quarter finals. Aren’t we a lucky bunch?

FINAL THOUGHTS…

Everything about the World Cup has been fantastic and the Round of 16 just continued that. I said on Twitter after Bradshaw and Kennedy had their little tiff about Kennedy not picking someone to win it that the real winners are all of us who get to see it.

Takahashi vs Lucky Kid might never have happened if it wasn’t for this kind of concept, there is a good possibility I’d never even realise how good the German wrestling scene is let alone get to have fallen in love with Lucky Kid, and that match is one that I think everyone should see. It was fantastic with two bizarre yet wonderful wrestlers.

It gave us a Back to the Future square off, which OK I didn’t like the match as much as I thought I would be it was still freakin’ fantastic to see. Just about every match guys like Ricochet, Ospreay, ZSJ, and Mysterio have been in have been must watch bouts. We got to see Ricochet vs Keith Lee which is honestly one of the best wrestling matches you’ll ever see, so go see it, and just having such a big group together has meant we’ve had dream matches with guys like Ricochet and Ospreay getting to face Mysterio.

Its introduced me to new wrestlers as well as reminding me why I love some of the ones that I don’t really watch that often. With so much to do in my life I don’t always get a chance to watch NJPW even though I pay every month for their streaming service or watch Lucha Underground which to be frank I only watch because the first time I saw it I fell in love with Angelico. When you have so much to do its easy to forget just how much you adore guys like Angelico or Takahashi, hell it isn’t like I sit and just watch WWE I tend to only watch their PPVs and that usually is because I’m just awake when they are on and its easy to stream through my PS4.

The World Cup has been a fantastic concept and I think WCPW have delivered more then they probably ever thought they would.

I was in actual tears watching Takahashi vs Lucky Kid, seeing Conners come back and after Will’s speech.

Plus don’t forget to give them all the credit in the world for making people care enough that simply the return of a original WCPW talent who is unable to compete for them because of a WWE contract is such a big thing. Some people, and I say it all the time, bemoan them for all sorts like giving time to the WhatCulture personalities and such like but if it was as bad as some people make out then who would care when Conners walked out? I screamed after seeing him and I didn’t even follow them from the beginning. They’ve made a product that people do care about with stories that stick with you even long after they have finished. Conners coming out and getting the reaction he got and the reaction I saw on Twitter just proves that they’ve made a show that does everything you want from a wrestling company.

Can’t wait to see how the World Cup ends.

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