Tagged: io shirai

Ayumi Kurihara: Thank You For Everything

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Sonny was on hand for Ayumi Kurihara’s retirement show earlier this month. Ayumi’s final act as a pro wrestler may have been her most heroic; she defeated Aja Kong. As Sonny reports:

The main event was Ayumi, Mika Iida and Akino versus Tomoka Nakagawa, GAMI and Aja Kong. It was a great match, lots of fun moments. The best parts were everyone on both teams ganging up on Aja and posing with her, and everyone ganging up on Ayumi. They whipped her into the corner, and the enter roster proceeded to do an attack on her, even Stardom’s Nanae Takahashi, Io Shirai, Natsuki Taiyo and Fuuka joined in.

Ayumi seemed to have a lot of fun and let it all out in this match. At one point she gave Aja 8 missile dropkicks in a row (it took 6 to get Kong off of her feet). The match was a fitting way to send off Ayumi and the torch was definitely passed to Mika Iida, who was super impressive here and in her singles match against Ayumi that opened the show.

And on the closing ten bell salute:

Her closest wrestling friends each rang the bell once, and some of the gongs were a little weak, which caused fans, and Ayumi herself to laugh. I can’t recall the order they were in, but you can tell when it’s GAMI’s turn because she deliberately pauses.

You can read the full results here, and see our photos below of the last of Ayumi Kurihara. Thanks for everything.

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STARDOM: Ryogoku Cinderella

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Yuzuki Aikawa, fashion model turned Pro Wrestling idol, retired in style on April 29th at Sumo Hall. 5,500 plus fans saw Yuzupon fall in defeat to her arch rival Yoshiko before donning a Cinderella dress and walking away from Pro Wrestling. Aikawa’s brief career as STARDOM’s ace was always fun to watch, and by the end she had developed into quite a solid wrestler.

Elsewhere on the card: Io Shirai took the World of STARDOM title from The Alpha Female after putting the giantess out with a few thousand head kicks. Rookie Takumi Iroha1 had a fantastic debut match against Meiko Satomura, aside from being brutally choked out. Hailey Hatred and Kyoko Kimura came out in Ribera jackets and Zubaz pants, just because, and lost their belts. Dark Angel won the vacant Wonder of STARDOM title by defeating pirated-turned-samurai Act Yasukawa.

Full gallery below the cut. More STARDOM pics to come soon, including the time Portia Perez competed for an invisible title belt. Enjoy.

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  1. Kellie Skater had told me prior to the show that Iroha was going to be big; the mutie is right.

Stardom: 5★Star GP2012

On my last trip to Tokyo, several of my Joshi watching friends were a bit surprised that my show itinerary did not include Stardom. Apparently, the company was the new hotness on the Japanese pro wrestling scene, (“It is now so famous company,” as one put it). The promotion has developed a sizable following in a very short time due to savvy cross-promotion, guided by Rossy Ogawa of ARSION fame and Fuka of Fuka fame, as well as a stable of young, appealing women that vets Nanae Takahashi, Natsuki*Taiyo, and Fuka herself, kicked, chopped, and choked into wrestling shape.

Not wanting to be behind the times, I finally took in my first Stardom live at Shin-Kiba on September 17th. The event was the penultimate show for Stardom’s 5 Star Grand Prix Tournament, a massive undertaking where a dozen of Joshi’s best competed in a block style tourney. Besides Stardom regulars like Nanae Takahashi, Natsuki*Taiyo, Io Shirai, and Yuzuki Aikawa, they also invited Canada/Mexico’s Dark Angel, Zero-1′s teen sensation Yuhi, and freelance psychopath Kyoko Kimura. Here were the results:

Stardom: 5★Star Grand Prix Tournament

September 17th, 2012 – Shin-Kiba 1st Ring

  1. Hiroyo Matsumoto defeated Yuuri Haruka & Natsumi Showzuki
  2. Miho Wakizawa defeated Kairi Hojo
  3. Io Shirai vs. Yuhi went to a 15 minute time limit draw
  4. Natsuki*Taiyo vs. Saki Kashima went to a 15 minute time limit draw
  5. Yoshiko defeated Act Yasukawa by referee stoppage due to a Mata Leon
  6. Dark Angel Sara Stock defeated Kyoko Kimura 
  7. Yuzuki Aikawa defeated Nanae Takahashi with a Tiger Suplex


The show started with the retired but loved Fuka in gold hot pants dancing with a pop group before taking on her role as ring announcer. In spite of the entertainment, Stardom didn’t forget that “JOSHIPRO” was on the marquee. Shortly after Hiroyo Matsumoto came out and smashed through a couple trainees before the tournament matches got under way.

Yuhi is a beast, for a 17 year old that is. She’s incredibly innovative and I’m pretty sure half her moveset comes from King of Fighters. The equally amazing Io Shirai, who has looked better than ever since becoming a singles star in Stardom, had her hands full with the teen dream. This ultimately went the time limit, which can’t be complained about since all 15 minutes were so good.

Saki Kashima vs. Natsuki*Taiyo was much less evenly matched, but went to a draw as well. As amazingly fast as Taiyo is, she was not able to finish this in 15. Saki’s frail frame somehow survived the worst of Natsuki’s arsenal towards the end.

Kyoko Kimura and Dark Angel, who are both looking pretty diesel right now,1 had an outstanding brawl that Stock narrowly won. Sarah had tons of crowd support during the show, and afterwards in the merch line. Having been to Japan a half-dozen times or so, an extended tour of Stardom for this tournament was certainly a good call.


The main event was likely the most anticipated match of the tournament. Nanae Takahashi, Alpha Joshi and holder of the “new red belt” 2 World of Stardom title versus the holder of the “white belt” Sky High of ARSION Wonder of Stardom Title, Yuzuki “Yuzupon” Aikawa.

Of all the women to join Nanae in Stardom, none has developed more as a wrestler or created more of a following than Yuzupon. She came to the promotion with a massive fan base due to her prior success as a gravure model, but she does much more than fill out a bikini. In her first match against Nanae she infamously had her chest welted and eye swollen shut from the brutal loss she sustained. Her reaction? Smile, pose, come back for more. Her beauty and her will-power brought her so much love that she was named Joshi of the Year for 2011, her first year in pro wrestling.

Yuzupon is a double champion in Stardom, as she won their inaugural tag title tournament with Yoko Bito. She was even given the honor of co-main eventing Bull Nakano’s retirement show against Hikaru Shida. However, she never avenged her first lost against Nanae. No matter how many accolades she received, her star always had that asterisk next to it.

It was debatable whether that would ever change. Pretty much no one beats Nanae nowadays. She’d gone 2 years without a singles loss prior to the September 17th show. But in front of 400 fans on the outskirts of Tokyo and, ironically enough, on Japan’s “Respect Your Elders” holiday, Yuzuki Aikawa finally toppled her mentor.

It wasn’t easy. Nanae, frankly, beat the shit out of Yuzupon, again. And, again, Yuzupon forced a smile through her bruised lips, posed with her welted chest, and came back for more, more, more. A blitz attack of multiple Yuzupon Kicks followed by a perfect Tiger Suplex was enough to keep Nanae down for exactly three seconds. Yuzupon’s supporters in the crowd erupted at the moment, but I doubt anyone was half as happy as her. She celebrated and thanked the fans on the mic to close out the show.3


As for the tournament overall, Yoshiko only needs to defeat Io this Sunday to punch her ticket to the finals from the Red Block. If she fails, then both Nanae and Yuzupon have a chance. In the Blue Block, things are little more open. If Stock wins then she goes, but if she loses or draws, Kimura could take the top spot with two wins on Sunday. You can run the numbers yourself in the chart below the gallery.

As for the show overall, I was very impressed with my first taste of Stardom. I think everyone knows how great Natsuki and Nanae are, but Io and Aikawa are absolutely amazing as well. Stardom has picked some excellent outside talent to bring in for this tournament, here’s hoping that’s a trend that continues past the tournament. Stardomn’s growth has already been a positive for the Joshi world and with their 2013 Sumo Hall, I hope the goodwill and excitement continues to spread.

Until next time, peace!

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  1. Kyoko also looks like she’s ready to team up with Kellie Skater again, as she’s ditched her braids for a mop top, and their gear is identical in form now.
  2. The “Red Belt” was the famed WWWA title of AJW, the Stardom title pays tribute to its legacy.
  3. I ran into Nanae at Manami Toyota’s anniversary show and mentioned that I attended this event. Her reaction, “I lost.” I immediately apologized.

Oz Academy Archives IV

Nami has sent us some more, beautiful, photos. Her photos cover the 7/24, 8/14, and 8/21 Oz Academy shows as well as the 7/31 Wave show. These events feature some of the top talent in Joshi and, as always, Nami captures the action in the most beautiful way possible. Note that Kana, Manami Toyota, Yumi Ohka, Aja Kong, Tomoka Nakagawa, Hiroyo Matsumoto, and Meiko Satomura are on these shows and will all be making their way to North America in the next few months for SHIMMER, CHIKARA, and NCW:FF. It’s a great time to be a fan of Joshi!












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Oz Academy Archives III

We have another set of fantastic Oz Academy photos from Nami. These beautiful images are from the 4/29 and 5/3 Oz Academy shows. Enjoy these great shots of Manami Toyota, Mayumi Ozaki, Takako Inoue, Ayumi Kurihara, Tomoka Nakagawa, The Shirai Sisters and more.

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Oz Academy Archives II

Nami has dug back into her massive catalog of beautiful Joshi pictures and delivered us this glorious shots from four Oz Academy shows from this year: 2/11, 2/19, 4/10, and 4/29. There’s also a couple of shots from the 1/30 Pro Wrestling WAVE show. Enjoy these great shots of Manami Toyota, Mayumi Ozaki, Takako Inoue, Ayumi Kurihara, Tomoka Nakagawa, The Shirai Sisters and more!


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Kana: The Dirty Dirty Sheets Interview

Kana is one of the most intriguing wrestlers in the world. Her vicious wrestling style, avant-garde fashion sense, and independent spirit has brought her a legion of supporters, and more than a few detractors, from around the globe. Known as “The Heart Terrorist,” and the self-proclaimed “Queen of All Women’s Wrestling,” the “World Famous” Kana wrestles regularly for SMASH, Wave, Osaka Pro, and several other promotions. She also produces her own shows under the Kana Office and Triple Tails banners. For the past year there has been near constant speculation about when she would finally make the trip to wrestle for her fans in the US. This talk has only been fueled by her current feud in Japan with ROH and SHIMMER star Serena Deeb.

We here at DDS are extremely excited to bring you Kana’s first interview for a foreign audience. We conducted this interview with Kana in Japanese and it has been translated into both English and German by DDS member Markus K. (@DakotaKDash). It has been translated into Thai by Pumi (@BBPumi) and French by Hanan (@LifeIsRKOingMe). DDS staff Ayzali (@AyzaliWali) also contributed to this interview. Photos were provided by Luke (@luke_the_3).

What made you want to become a professional wrestler? How did you start?

I was a fan of Mutō Keiji. Then I started to like Satoru Sayama (SAYAMA), Fujiwara Yoshiaki (FUJIWARA), Antonio Inoki, Maeda Akira, Takada Nobuhiko, Funaki Masakatsu, Volk Han and Suzuki Minoru. I never was a fan of women’s professional wrestling, and even now I’m still not a fan. I wanted to become a wrestler because I was a fan of men’s professional wrestling. I found a job as a graphic designer, but  then I decided to take the path of a wrestler.

Your wrestling style is constantly changing. How do you describe your current style? How do you train?

My style may be one that is unique in all of the world, because I mix MMA (like Sayama Shoot Style & Fujiwara, Karl Gotch UWF, and Combat Sambo), and american style professional wrestling (TAJIRI). I effectively fuse rational movement (“human body engineering”) with body language and facial expressions.

Tell us about Kana Office. What do you hope to accomplish with it?

The fact that I founded a corporation shows that I am mentally and socially superior to other wrestlers. The sports world is still influenced by Marxism. I want to separate myself from this Marxism, as a CEO I can do that. I can use the role as CEO for my character as well as my daily life. All of this is connected. This role as CEO makes my lifestyle very rich.

In Japan, this status plays a major role and is good for negotiations. My company is very energetic. We are active in many areas, for example in design and game development and we own a hair salon.

Kana Office donates some of its proceeds to charity. What are the causes you support?

I am not a celebrity. However, compassion is part of my life philosophy. I can not donate as much as celebrities can, but I do what I can. I hope that my donations allow people to live a fulfilling life. It is probably impossible to make everyone happy, but we can try.

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WAVE – Happy Birthday Wave 2011

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January 4th in Tokyo is New Japan Tokyo Dome Show Day. It’s when skunk-haired  pretty boys retrieve title belts from grizzled outside challengers, for an audience way too small for the venue. It’s a tradition, but one which GAMI’s WAVE promotion has no respect for. Why? Because January 4th is GAMI’s birthday, dammit. And she must put on a show, main event it, and get her face shoved in a cake. This has also become a tradition, this being the 3rd straight year I skipped the dome and went for Joshi:

WAVE: Happy Birthday Wave 2011 (Results via Puroresu Representin’)

2010/01/04 – Shinjuku FACE

1. Sawako Shimotsuke 10 Match Series 1: Hiroyo Matsumoto beat Sawako Shimotsuke – 8:30

2. Six Women Lucha Libre Tag Match: Ayako Hamada, Tomoka Nakagawa & Sakura Hirota vs. Kana, Mio & Io Shirai went to a 20 minute time limit draw

3. TAKA Michinoku  beat Toshie Uematsu – 11:35

4. Yumi Ohka, Bambi, Misaki Ohata & Hiren beat Moeka Haruhi, Cherry, Ayumi Kurihara & Ryo Mizunami – 15:30 – Ohata pinned Haruhi

5. Meiko Satomura beat GAMI – 23:00

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Tomboys vs Old Men

Mio gives TAJIRI a taste via @luke_the_3

 

The one woman shootstyle wrestling machine known as Kana Office put on it’s second show yesterday to a sell out crowd. Results are as follows, see great photos here:

Kana Pro 2 – 2011/01/10 – Shinjuku Face (Results via Puroresu Representin’)
423 paid (sellout)

1. Meiko Satomura beat Sawako Shimotsuke – 8:07.

2. Hikaru Sato beat GAMI – 11:22.

3. TAJIRI & Mio Shirai beat Mineo Fujita & Io Shirai – 14:08. Mio pinned Io with help from TAJIRI.

4 .Hardcore Match: Isami Kodaka vs. Katsuyoshi Usuda – 15 minute time limit draw.

5. Tatsuhito Takaiwa, Kengo Mashimo & Shigehiro Irie beat Big Murakami, Kota ibushi & Keita Yano – 14:31. Takaiwa pinned Yano after Death Valley Bomb.

6. Yuki Ishikawa & Carlos Amano beat Yoshiaki Fujiwara & Kana – 22:28. Ishikawa beat Kana with a chicken wing.

Pretty much everyone on the show likes to kick people in the face, so I’m looking forward to the DVD. In the meantime though, there’s been a few stiff shots landed on Twitter between TAJIRI and the Shirai Sisters:

@TajiriBuzzsaw: Shirai sister. they are not bad, but undignified. heavy make up and tomboyish. Kodama [SMASH Wrestler] seems to have fallen in love with the younger sister.

@TajiriBuzzsaw: However, I’m interested in  mature women with heavy make up. However, she slapped me. I thought heavy make up was heavy make up. Arrogant impudence.

Followed by this Wall of Text repeating his main issue:

[厚化粧: Heavy Makeup - atsugeshou] [と: and - to ] [オキャンピー: Tomboy - okyanpii]

Then the Triple Tails girls chimed in:

@shirai_io: What’s “okyanpii”? What does it mean? Is it a dead word?

@K_a_n_a_: It’s a dead word. Tajiri-chan is a grandpa. I bet he is still using “mabui” and “ikasu.” LOL. Note: Like everything else, words can go out of style in Japan.

@shirai_io: Just as I thought, it’s a dead word. Heisei era [1989 and up] people don’t know it. He’s a grandpa. And a shitty old man.

@shirai_io: That old man is becoming dim. Shitty TAJIRI.

Tajiri doesn’t seem to have let it go just yet, but he’s mostly repeating himself. Kana responded with something I’m not quite sure about, related to him being out of breath while he was posing in the match today, or maybe a more esoteric point about him being outdated in general. I think Io clearly took the 1st Round KO victory here.

I believe the crew will next run into each other at SMASH’s Osaka show 1/30. Before that SMASH will be hosting Serena Deeb in a double shot on 1/29 in Tokyo. Details here.

 

Update:

TAJIRI admitted to being infatuated with the Shirai Sisters. Io responded by dubbing him “TAjiichan” (Ta-Grandpa), and calling him a ‘pinche cabron,’ worthless asshole, in Spanish. TKO.