Photography via New Japan Pro-Wrestling
A four-way tie at the top of the A block develops after the 13th night of G1 Climax 30. The round robin tournament continued on Saturday from EDION Arena in Osaka with the seventh round of A Block matches.
The results give four wrestling matching records in the standings. Kota Ibushi, Jay White, Kazuchika Okada, and Will Ospreay all have 10 points as the points race takes shape. Now the tournament comes down to the have and have-nots: those that still have a chance to win, and those that have no chance to advance.
Okada beat Shingo Takagi in the main event of the card at EDION Arena. Ibushi won over Minoru Suzuki. Ospreay defeated Taichi. White underhandedly cheated his way to beating Yujiro Takahashi. In another tournament match, Jeff Cobb beat Tomohiro Ishii.
Half of the field in A Block now act as potential spoilers that could possibly upset the standings going forward.
Okada Back On Top
Back in a familiar position on the card, Kazuchika Okada closed the show after a long stretch of being down the card. Okada defeated Takagi in a great match, and then he gave a post-match speech. That was a return to a position he regularly found himself in when he was a reigning IWGP champion.
Something somewhat unfamiliar was the manner in which he won the main event match. Okada beat Takagi using his Money Clip sleeper when referee Red Shoes Unno stopped the match. Though Takagi would not tap, the ref stoppage came when Takagi passed out in the hold.
Takagi took the fight to Okada throughout the match. He had a firm advantage over Okada in parts of the match, but Okada fought back. Takagi gave a Okada a DDT on the floor at one point, and Takagi later in the match gave him a receipt with a draping DDT on the floor.
Okada numerous times went to apply The Money Clip, but Takagi would escape his clutch. Using the cradle that won him a few matches in previous tournament bouts, Okada nearly hooked Takagi for a pinfall. Takagi also had several near falls on Okada throughout the match.
Takagi mocked Okada briefly after delivering his own version of a Rainmaker clothesline. Also using some of his signature offense, Takagi with Made In Japan and a pumping bomber got a near fall.
In the closing moments, Okada went to apply The Money Clip. Takagi escaped, but he was met by a lariat from Okada. Applying his Money Flip a final time, Okada had Takagi trapped in the middle of the ring. Takagi would not tap, and he grabbed Red Shoes to stop him from calling for the bell. However, Takagi could not hold out forever. He passed out in the hold, and the referee stopped the match.
Okada improves his record to five wins and two loses, giving him a total of 10 points. Takagi falls to a 3-4 record for a total of six points so far.
“Golden Star” Fell Suzuki
Kota Ibushi defeated Minoru Suzuki in another great encounter on the card. During the match they traded strikes and kicks as the bout resembled a shootfight at times. The fight soon spilled outside, thanks to Suzuki.
Suzuki dared Ibushi to follow him down the aisle to the top of the entrance ramp, where they proceeded to duke it out. Suzuki dropped Ibushi with a strike, and Ibushi would have been counted out if Suzuki had not went back out to a moments later to break the count.
Some of the striking exchanges looked stiff, as this match played on realism probably more than any other match on the card. Suzuki flashed his maniacal smile at times. He seemingly loved the carnage, even when he was on the receiving end.
Late in the match, Suzuki caught Ibushi in a sleeper before going for the Gotch piledriver. Ibushi countered the piledriver, and he went for the Kamigoye. Suzuki with a counter was able to trap Ibushi in a Boston crab. Ibushi escaped the hold to deliver a standing Kamigoye, and he followed with another Kamigoye to score the pinfall. This bout was stellar.
“The Assassin” Drops Taichi
Will Ospreay beat Taichi in a match third from the top of the card. Ospreay in the opening moments riled Taichi by messing up his hair. When the fighting spilled outside the ring, Taichi hit Ospreay with the hammer used to ring the bell. That allowed Taichi to get heat on Ospreay for awhile.
After creating some separation, Ospreay used his aerial skills to regain an advantage. He flipped over the ropes with a dive. Ospreay followed a shooting star press with a corkscrew senton to get a two count.
Taichi twice countered an OsCutter, and he also got his knees up when Ospreay attempted a 450 splash. Taichi pulled off his pants after a near fall, but it was all in vain. They would go on to counter each other’s finisher until Ospreay landed an OsCutter for a near fall. Ospreay followed with a Hidden Blade, and then he executed a Stormbreaker to put Taichi down for a three count.
Milano Collection A.T., who was provided commentary at the announce desk, declared his love for Ospreay after the match. He remains his most vocal supporter during this tournament, calling him the greatest.
Ospreay with the win now as a 5-2 record for 10 points, while Taichi drops to 3-4 for six points.
“Switchblade” Wins Bullet Club Matchup
Jay White thought he had basically a night off in a match against Yujiro Takahashi. White came out dressed in street clothes and sneakers, with an idea that Takahashi would lay down for him. However, this was no Finger Poke of Doom as Takahashi had other ideas.
Both are members of Bullet Club, and White often proclaims himself the leader. He assumed Takahashi would allow him to win the match. Takahashi laid down at first, but he kept kicking out when White tried to cover him. White was perplexed, especially when Takahashi used a schoolboy to roll him up for a near fall. Takahashi continued his onslaught, netting him a few more two counts.
Takahashi even used a low blow, but he would soon suffer the same fate. Gedo distracted the referee so White could deliver a low blow to Takahashi. White then delivered a Blade Runner, and he covered Takahashi for a pinfall.
Proving there remains dissension among Bullet Club, White grabbed a chair looking to wallop Takahashi. Gedo stepped in to calm him down.
White moves to a 5-2 record for a ten points. Takahashi remains winless at the bottom of the standings dropping to 0-7 and zero points.
Cobb Defeats “Stone Pitbull”
Jeff Cobb had arguably his best match of the tournament so far with a victory over Tomohiro Ishii. This was a war of attrition as they battled for suplexes and traded headbutts.
There were more lariats in this match than a rodeo. They slammed into each other time and again, and they traded German suplexes for near falls. Cobb used himself as a battering ram to drop Ishii with a running headbutt.
Down the stretch after a striking exchange, Ishii went for a hurricanrana, but Cobb countered to powerbomb him. Cobb followed up with a Tour of the Islands, and he covered Ishii for a pinfall. This was quite the battle.
The outcomes gives both a 3-4 record and each six points so far in the tournament.
The card itself opened with another outstanding match between Young Lions. Yuya Uemura pinned Yota Tsuji in the opener. Uemura targeted an arm early on, and that would play into the finish later on. Tsuji gained control, and applied a Boston crab. Uemura would eventually escape the hold. After a deep arm drag that turned the tide, Uemura grabbed Tsuji to deliver a double arm suplex. Uemura held on with a bridge to cover Tsuji for the pinfall.
The tournament continues on Sunday with B Block matches from Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium in Nagoya.
G1 Standings After Night 13
- Kota Ibushi — 10 points (5-2 record)
- Jay White — 10 pts. (5-2)
- Kazuchika Okada — 10 pts. (5-2)
- Will Ospreay — 10 pts. (5-2)
- Tomohiro Ishii — 6 pts. (3-4)
- Shingo Takagi — 6 pts. (3-4)
- Minoru Suzuki — 6 pts. (3-4)
- Taichi — 6 pts. (3-4)
- Jeff Cobb — 6 pts. (3-4)
- Yujiro Takahashi — 0 pts. (0-7)
- Tetsuya Naito — 10 pts. (5-1)
- EVIL — 8 points (4-2)
- Hiroshi Tanahashi — 6 pts. (3-3)
- Juice Robinson — 6 pts. (3-3)
- Zack Sabre Jr. — 6 pts. (3-3)
- Toru Yano — 6 pts. (3-3)
- Hirooki Goto — 6 pts. (3-3)
- SANADA — 6 pts. (3-3)
- KENTA — 4 pts. (2-4)
- YOSHI-HASHI — 2 pts. (1-5)
Night 13 Results:
- Kazuchika Okada defeated Shingo Takagi
- Kota Ibushi defeated Minoru Suzuki
- Will Ospreay defeated Taichi
- Jay White defeated Yujiro Takahashi
- Jeff Cobb defeated Tomohiro Ishii
- Yuya Uemura defeated Yota Tsuji (non-tournament)
Next show: Sunday from Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium in Nagoya starting at 2:00 AM PDT/5:00 AM EDT/10:00 AM BST
October 11th Lineup:
- Tetsuya Naito vs. EVIL
- Hiroshi Tanahashi vs. Hirooki Goto
- Juice Robinson vs. SANADA
- Toru Yano vs. KENTA
- YOSHI-HASHI vs. Zack Sabre Jr.
- Yota Tsuji vs. Gabriel Kidd (non-tournament)