For the first time in 21 years, New Japan Pro Wrestling is holding a show at Jingu Stadium as part of their Summer Struggle Tour. With its large space and open-air setting, it is the perfect way to conclude the tour. On this massive stage, New Japan has made the card equally as good with five title matches for fans to enjoy.
Match One: Special Singles Match – Master Wato vs. Yoshinobu Kanemaru
After going through Suzuki Gun’s DOUKI after returning from an excursion, Master Wato has a tougher challenge on his hands. Coming out after the match, Jr Heavyweight veteran Yoshinobu Kanemaru targeted Wato.
Although both are Jr Heavyweights, the two wrestlers style’s couldn’t be more different. Kanemaru prides himself on combining a more high-flying style with a smarter approach to wrestling. As seen by his matches during the Best of Super Jr tournaments, if he can win with as little effort as possible, then it’s a bonus. On the other hand, WATO has this youthfulness and determination mixed in with his Japanese/ Mexican hybrid style.
Going into the match, Kanemaru is at a distinct advantage with almost four times as much experience as the young Wato. However, he managed to beat DOUKI in the past. Maybe this desire to prove himself will pick up another win that will slowly move him up the New Japan ranks.
Match Two: King Of Pro-Wrestling 2020 Finals Fatal-4-Way Match
After Kazuchika Okada announced this new King of Pro-Wrestling (KOPW) concept earlier in the month, nobody knew what to expect. In the lead up to this match, there will be four singles matches with fans voting for which stipulation they want to see.
The preliminary bracket matches took place at Korakuen Hall on Wednesday 26th August. The winners of those matches were El Desperado (via DQ), Toru Yano, SANADA and Okada. These four wrestlers will enter this fatal-4-way match final match at Jingu Stadium. The winner of this match will be the first owner of the most unpredictable title in New Japan.
With this match being so unknown, anything is possible and, no matter what happens, it will be impossible not to gain the attention of fans.
Match Three: NEVER Openweight Championship – Shingo Takagi vs. Minoru Suzuki
After Minoru Suzuki beat Yuji Nagata during the Summer Struggle Tour, he told the audience that he had a new target on his mind. Fast forward to a tag match and this opponent was revealed to be NEVER champion Shingo Takagi. The Dragon was more than happy to accept the King’s request.
It is no lie that Minoru Suzuki is one of the names most linked to the NEVER title. He had a single reign lasting over 250 days and four defences. Shingo is also cementing himself as a strong NEVER champion with over 200 days with three successful defences.
Both men are extremely talented in the ring, if not very diverse. Shingo has the speed and agility of a Jr Heavyweight but also an unrivalled strength. Suzuki is a lot more methodical by targeting a body part on his opponent to showcase why he is one of the best submission wrestlers in the business.
There have also been rumours about other stipulations being considered due to the scale of Jingu stadium. However, no matter what happens, this match will be nothing short of a brutal, fistfight between two of the toughest in New Japan.