Photography by New Japan Pro-Wrestling
G1 Climax 30 rolled on Tuesday when NJPW returned to the fabled Korakuen Hall in Tokyo. The sixth night of the round robin tournament featured the third set of B Block matches.
Tetsuya Naito continues his streak of good matches as he headlined the card against Hirooki Goto in the main event. Naito also remains unbeaten in the tournament this year. Joining him as the only other person in the B Block to remain undefeated, Toru Yano scored another upset victory with a win over EVIL.
Hiroshi Tanahashi gained his first win of the tournament over Juice Robinson. In doing so, that gave Robinson his first loss so far since returning to Japan for G1.
Much like “The Ace,” YOSHI-HASHI also picked up his first win in the tournament. He fought SANADA in a battle of two without a win. Unless they went to a draw, one of the them was leaving the ring having earned their first win.
Also on the card was SANADA over Zack Sabre Jr, and a Young Lion match was underneath it all.
Destino Brings Down “The Fierce Warrior”
The double champion of NJPW remained unbeaten in the tournament this year when Naito defeated Goto. The two had arguably the best match on the card, a trend for Naito matches so far in B Block. The back-and-forth battle saw many counters and reversals while they also traded near falls.
Goto took a Destino several times, but he kept kicking out of pin attempts. After one final Destino, Goto was finally down for the count when Naito covered him for the pinfall.
Naito in the early portion of the match targeted an arm, but Goto continued to fight. Goto rose up and kept bringing the fight to Naito. Changing targets, Naito began to focus on the head and neck of Goto. That would eventually lead to The Destino, and then a three count.
Naito improves to three wins and no losses for a total of six points in the tournament. Goto drops to one win and two losses for a total of two points.
Outfoxing EVIL for Another Yano Upset
Toru Yano continues his winning streak by capitalizing on a comedy of errors to once again gain a victory. Yano defeated EVIL despite interference by Dick Togo. Yano had his not so secret weapons — athletic tape and low blows.
EVIL tried to be serious, but Yano was having none of that. Yano removed all four turnbuckle covers so all four corners had exposed metal. That cost him as EVIL bashed Yano into a corner. Yano with receipts also sent EVIL into the exposed buckles.
Togo interfered at time, but Yano taped him to the guardrail. Later on, Togo would jump into the ring to give Yano a low blow. EVIL also at one point gave Yano a low blow. The master of the low blow would not be outdone, so Yano gave them both low blows. Then he used a double low blow on the two heels.
After a final low blow, Yano rolled up Goto with a schoolboy to score the pinfall.
Yano somehow moves to 3–0 with six points. EVIL falls to 1–2 with two points.
“Ace” Cradles “The Flamboyant”
Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Juice Robinson in a tournament bout third from the top on the card. A match between babyfaces quickly turned dirty with hair pulling. Juice became the aggressor, but Tanahashi soon looked to turn the tide by attempting a cloverleaf leglock. Foreshadowing the finish that came later, Robinson countered with an inside cradle for a near fall.
They would trade near falls down the stretch. At one point, both were fighting atop the turnbuckles when Robinson set Tanahashi up for a superplex. Upon landing the superplex, Robinson held on to his grip and transitioned into a jackhammer. That led to the best near fall of the match when Tanahashi kicked out at two.
For the finish, Tanahashi countered Pulp Friction. “The Ace” then tied up Robinson in a cradle to score a three count.
Tanahashi with his first win in the tournament improved to 1–2, giving him two points. Robinson with his first tournament loss dropped to 2–1 with a total of four points so far.
Bullet Club Singles Win Over Suzuki-gun
KENTA defeated Zack Sabre Jr. in a plodding match to notch a Bullet Club win over a member of Suzuki-gun. The match had less drama than other bouts on the card, and then it just kind of ended. KENTA with a knee strike, and he used GTS to lay out Sabre for a pinfall.
They grappled at the start, taking things slow. The pace hardly quickened from there, although at times they had flashes of offense. They also traded near falls throughout the match.
KENTA did leap off the top rope late in the match to deliver a double foot stomp, but Sabre kicked out at two. Sabre with a small package got another two count just before the finish. Sabre followed by going for more strikes when KENTA caught him with a knee that set up the GTS.
KENTA improves to 2–1 with four points, while Sabre drops to 1–2 with two points.
YOSHI-HASHI Scores Needed Win Over SANADA
Someone who became an underdog favorite in the tournament is YOSHI-HASHI. Some critics panned him even being in the tournament. He silenced much of that criticism and showed remarkable workrate. YOSHI-HASHI in the tournament is delivering with solid in-ring performances. He picked up his first win when he defeated SANADA, who is still without a win this year in G1.
YOSH-HASHI showed fire from the start, despite SANADA trying to work him over. YOSHI-HASHI fired up into a comeback, but his hopes were soon dashed when SANADA did a moonsault that he transitioned into a Skull End. Seemingly trapped, YOSHI-HASHI managed to escape. He blocked an attempted moonsault press, but he took a TKO cutter. He still kicked out.
YOSHI-HASHI blocked the Skull End, but SANADA would apply it again. SANADA even turned the Skull End into a big swing looking to disorient YOSHI-HASHI. Nevertheless, SANADA soon found himself having to kick out of a small package. They traded more near falls until YOSHI-HASHI executed his pumphandle driver, Karma, to score the pinfall.
Picking up his first win to earn two points, YOSHI-HASHI stands at 1-2 in the tournament. SANADA remains winless at 0–3 and zero points. SANADA is now the only person in the B Block without a win.
The card itself opened with Yuya Uemura defeating Gabriel Kidd in a non-tournament match between Young Lions. Another solid opener as the Young Lion bouts continue to an exciting way to open the show. Uemura went on to submit Kidd using a Boston crab to gain the victory.
The tournament continues on Wednesday with the second of two back-to-back nights at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo.
G1 Standings After Night Six:
- Jay White – 6 points (3-0 record)
- Taichi – 6 pts. (3-0)
- Will Ospreay – 4 pts. (2-1)
- Kota Ibushi – 4 pts. (2-1)
- Minoru Suzuki – 4 pts. (2-1)
- Kazuchika Okada – 2 pts. (1-2)
- Jeff Cobb – 2 pts. (1-2)
- Shingo Takagi – 2 pts. (1-2)
- Tomohiro Ishii – 0 pts. (0-3)
- Yujiro Takahashi – 0 pts. (0-3)
- Tetsuya Naito – 6 pts. (3-0)
- Toru Yano – 6 pts. (3-0)
- Juice Robinson – 4 pts. (2-1)
- KENTA – 4 pts. (2-1)
- Hirooki Goto – 2 points (1-2)
- Zack Sabre Jr. – 2 points (1-2)
- EVIL – 2pts. (1-2)
- YOSHI-HASHI – 2 pts. (1-2)
- Hiroshi Tanahashi – 2 pts. (1-2)
- SANADA – 0 pts. (0-3)
Night Six Results:
- Yuya Uemura defeated Gabriel Kidd (non-tournament)
- YOSHI-HASHI defeated SANADA
- KENTA defeated Zack Sabre Jr.
- Hiroshi Tanahashi defeated Juice Robinson
- Toru Yano defeated EVIL
- Tetsuya Naito defeated Hirooki Goto
Next show: Wednesday from Korakuen Hall in Tokyo starting at 2:30 AM PDT/5:30 AM EDT/10:30 AM BST
September 30th Lineup:
- Tomohiro Ishii vs. Shingo Takagi
- Will Ospreay vs. Jay White
- Kazuchika Okada vs. Taichi
- Kota Ibushi vs. Jeff Cobb
- Minoru Suzuki vs. Yujiro Takahashi
- Yota Tsuji vs. Yuya Uemura (non-tournament)