Ospreay gets every bit of Taichi in Sapporo
The semi main event of new beginning in Sapporo night one saw Will Ospreay take to the ring against a Taichi who had all of Hokkai Kita Yell behind him in his hometown.
Ospreay wanted the very best of Taichi, and instantly drew him into a strike exchange before the Holy Emperor blasted Ospreay with a hook kick. In the plus position, Taichi delivered heavy shots, but after a boot took Taichi to the floor, a plancha with a high angle of attack put the Briton in control. Finding his target in taichi’s back and ribs, Ospreay set to work. Taichi gained a gamengiri in the corner to create a little distance, though, and an Ax Bomber put the reborn Assassin to the canvas.
Just as Taichi built momentum, Ospreay would cut him off with an overhead kick, but Taichi resolutely avoided the Os Cutter, instead unleahing a brutal Dangerous Backdrop hold with a release. Battling back, Ospreay poked a dangerous bear, calling back to the offense of Taichi’s one time mentor Toshiaki Kawada. Seemingly intent on drawing an angry fight from his opponent, Ospreay aimed Kawada kicks to Taichi’s head before inviting Taichi to take his own shots; vicious standing shots ensued, and when Ospreay thought he could land the Hidden Blade out of nowhere he was instead met with a Yokozuna Elbow.
The offense seemed to escalate in the style of former All Japan greats; Ospreay went to Kawada’s rival Mitsuharu Misawa for a Tiger Driver ’91 that didn’t end the match, and nor did Taichi’s use of the terrifying Triple Crown Bomb to prevent a Super Os Cutter. With Ospreay hurting badly, Taichi got another two from a Yokozuna Elbow to the back of the head, and a Dangerous Backdrop Hold didn’t settle things either.
As Sapporo sat on the edge of their seats, Taichi countered a Super Os Cutter again with the Jado Clucth for two before being met with Hidden Blade. Taichi still kicked out, and kept standing, Ospreay demanding his foe answer in the face of elbow shots. That he did with a crunching blow, but a rolling elbow put Taichi to the mat, referee Marty Asami stepping in to start a ten count on the Holy Emperor.
Taichi shoved Asami aside to stop the count being applied, but was met with another Hidden Blade for his trouble. A Stormbreaker quickly followed, and Ospreay was victorious after a gripping semi main event war.
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