Pro Wrestling U-Style on Samurai TV, 4/6/03
review by Ryan Mancuso

Hello once again, I have returned with another review from Pro Wrestling U-Style. This review is from the second ever U-Style show on April 6th, 2003 at Tokyo Differ Ariake. The main event of the show sees Kiyoshi Tamura face SHOOTO superstar Dokonjonsuke Mishima. Also, Wataru Sakata looks to improve his luck in U-Style when he faces off against Kiyoshi Tamura student Kazuki Okubo. Osaka Pro's Takehiro Murahama also appears again to face another Tamura student in Kyosuke Sasaki. Enough with the preview and onto the review:

Hiroyuki Ito vs. Tomohiko Yoshida

This was a solid match to open the show. Ito was the better of the two in the match because he understands the style better. It started out pretty even. However, Ito started to gain the advantage by locking on holds that forced Yoshida to reach the ropes to break it. Eventually, Ito got the win by making Yoshida tap to the cross armbreaker.

Manabu Hara vs. Ryo Echigo

This was a pretty good match with Echigo being to slam and suplex Hara a few times to try and open up submissions. However, Hara was the better striker and ground defensive fighter. He landed plenty of clean shots including one that knocked Echigo down. He was able to counter many Echigo’s submission attempts, after being suplexed or slammed, without the need to reach the ropes. The 15 minute time limit expired. Hara was declared the winner for having the most points.

Katsuhisa Fujii vs. Naoki Kimura

This was another dominating performance by Fujii. Kimura got a little offense with a few slaps, slam and attempted cross armbreaker. However, Fujii was too strong with his striking. Fujii won the match quickly with a German suplex and repeatedly palm strike Kimura on the ground. U-Style is definitely building up Fujii as a force.

Takehiro Murahama vs. Kyosuke Sasaki

Except for a failed attempt to whip Kyosuke off the ropes, this was definitely a lot more shoot-style than Murahama’s match at the debut show. This was a really good match. The striking was really good. Kyosuke continues to impress me with quick takedowns into submissions. The crowd was really getting into the match as it progressed because they thought they were going to see Kyosuke pull off the upset. The upset did not happen as Murahama used a German suplex and transition into a cross armbreaker for the submission. This would be the last time Murahama would wrestle for U-Style.

Wataru Sakata vs. Kazuki Okubo

This was a fun match with the veteran Sakata dominating the young star Okubo. He would win strike exchanges and force Okubo to reach the ropes on holds. Okubo did make a brief comeback when he locked Sakata in a cross kneescissors and forced him to break it by reaching the ropes. After that, the match went back to Sakata’s favor. He made Okubo tap with a high angle single-leg Boston crab.

Kiyoshi Tamura vs. Dokonjonosuke Mishima

Another high quality main event from U-Style. This was Mishima’s debut in pro wrestling and he looked really good. He is not afraid to throw some unique looking kicks and tie up Tamura in various submissions. I can’t wait to see more of him in future U-Style shows. Of course, Tamura looked great as usual. He gave Mishima a lot of offense and made the fans believe that the Lightweight MMA star could pull off the big victory. Here is my play-by-play for this match:

The bell rings and Mishima is already trying to connect with a fancy jump kick. Tamura blocks the attempt. They get into a clinch. Mishima takes Tamura down with a belly-to-belly suplex. They tussle on the mat for better positioning towards submissions. Mishima is able to get leglock on. Tamura is fighting hard to escape without using the ropes and finally succeeds when he is able to stand up. Both men are standing and throwing glancing kicks. Mishima goes for a spin kick, but Tamura moves out of the way. Tamura connects with some leg kicks and takes Mishima down.

Mishima is able to stand back up, but he is in Tamura’s waistlock. Mishima tries to escape the waistlock by using a rolling kneebar, but Tamura evades the submission attempt. Tamura takes Mishima down again and attempts a key lock. However, Mishima escapes the submission attempt and gets in the side mount. Mishima locks Tamura in the Cobragatame which is a mix of ankle lock and headlock. After suffering the effects of the hold for a few seconds, Tamura gets out of it without needed to use a rope break.

Mishima uses his feet to scissor Tamura's foot and lock him in a double ankle lock. Tamura has to use the ropes to escape. As a result, he has 4 points left. Tamura barely connects with a kick to the leg, but knocks Mishima down with two high kicks. Mishima beats the 10 count and loses his first point of the match. Mishima connects with a kick to the body and cartwheel kick that knocks Tamura back into the ropes. Mishima barely connects with a spin kick on Tamura. While he was on the ground, Mishima takes Tamura down with a single leg. Mishima rolls over Tamura in a hammerlock and leglock hybrid.

Tamura escapes, but manages to briefly lock Mishima in a triangle choke. Mishima escapes and tries to lock Tamura in a leglock. Tamura reverses the leglock on Mishima. As a result, Mishima has to reach the ropes. Mishima is now down to 3 points. Both men are standing. Tamura rocks Mishima with various strikes. A kick to the body knocks Mishima down. The referee counts, but Mishima is able to get up again and down to 2 points left. Mishima is looking exhausted and beat up. However, he manages to slam Tamura on the mat.

Mishima positions himself to locking Tamura in a headscissors. From that position, Mishima transitions into a cross armbreaker. Tamura tries to fight it off, but Mishima succeeds with the submission attempt. However, Tamura is too close to the ropes and breaks the submission. Tamura has 3 points left. Both men are standing, but Tamura knocks Mishima down again with a kick to the body. Mishima is trying to wave off the referee that it was not a knockdown, but the referee counts anyway. Mishima doesn’t argue the call and uses the time to recover. Mishima has only 1 point left.

Mishima nails Tamura with a palm strike and goes for a takedown. Tamura counters it with a guillotine choke. He takes Mishima down on the ground. He goes for the move that finished off Wataru Sakata at the U-Style debut show with the front sleeper. However, Tamura decides to transition into a cross armbreaker. Mishima tries to fight it off, but the submission is locked in. Mishima taps out and Tamura goes 2-0 in U-Style main events. After the match, Tamura and Mishima shake hands over a good match.

Final Thoughts: Another very good show by U-Style, and I thought it was better than their debut. Tamura vs. Mishima was a great match with Mishima using his unique style to throw off Tamura some. The semi-main event was a fun veteran vs. underdog story. Kyosuke Sasaki, Hiroyuki Ito and Manabu Hara are becoming three of the best undercard wrestlers on U-Style shows because they had good matches. Fujii's quick destruction of Kimura was entertaining as well. If you are into shoot-style pro wrestling, then I would recommend checking this show out.

Final Score: 8.0 [Very Good]

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