WoS Wrestling continues onto its second week after come off a premiere episode that peaked, reportedly, at 1.2m viewers.
This week, we’ve got the first match in the women’s division, tag team action and a ladder match.
After a great recap of last week’s events with Alex Shane bringing new viewers up to speed, Stu Bennett says it’s time for another title match, this time for the WoS Women’s Championship, before he proudly announces a celebration for Rampage, flanked by Sha Samuels and CJ Banks, and looking like the king of the pride. Samuels may crow about the greatness of Rampage and how cowardly “everyone in the back” is, but that doesn’t stop Hendry coming out and challenging the new WoS Wrestling champion.
Rampage vs Joe Hendry
“A champion we can be proud of,” says Bennett, a sentiment echoed by Sha Samuels, faces the man who’s on a quest for gold, Joe Hendry, having been robbed of an opportunity by his partner’s betrayal last week.
A great opening match for both men, with Rampage retaining after interference from CJ Banks. Rampage is a beast of a champion and looks to be an unstoppable monster. Both men came into the match looking like the stars that they are and this was a match that was main event calibre by itself. Hopefully, they’ll cross paths again at some point in season 1.
Gabriel Kidd vs Lionheart vs Liam Slater vs Robbie X
A four-way ladder match, with the winner retrieving a briefcase for “a big opportunity”.
Early on, Lionheart takes taking out the younger men in quick succession and it’s a few minutes in before we get the first ladder in the ring!
From there, it’s a familiar battle well done as all four men vying to ascend the ladder, putting everything on the line to get there. We see the exceptionally gifted Robbie X, the bruiser Gabriel Kidd and the adept Liam Slater battle it out with crazy moments galore, whilst the veteran Lionheart takes umbrage to everyone and everything until Kidd grabs the briefcase and the opportunity.
A fantastic ladder match and a show-stealing one consider it’s only the second one of this show!
Doug Williams and HT Drake vs Nathan Cruz and Adam Maxted
The close friendship of Cruz and Maxted against the experience of Williams and the tenacity of Drake, this is the second tag team match of this season and the bar has just been set even higher.
It’s a wonderful thing watching the matt-based skill of Williams and Cruz and, if Shane is accurate, this could be the last year that we see Williams in the ring. Drake and Maxted certainly hold their own against the much more experienced men.
With Cruz and Maxted taking advantage of distractions and opportunities for the victory, the showboating and the closeness must surely be a focus of WoS Wrestling in the coming weeks as this bromance proceeds in the tag team tournament.
Viper vs Kay Lee Ray vs Bea Priestley
The first women’s champion is going to be crowned in a three-way match against three stand out wrestlers. There’s mention of Priestley as the “real-life girlfriend of Will Ospreay” and whilst that’s true, she’s so much more than that as she demonstrates in this match against the imposing Viper and the wily Kay Lee Ray.
Viper dominates early on and it forces Priestley and Kay Lee Ray to work together whilst taking opportunities for victory. Eventually, with Viper worn down, all three desperately fight for the Women’s Championship and it’s a show of final push from Kay Lee Ray that sees her gain the victory and the gold.
Episode 2 of WoS Wrestling builds on the strengths of episode one but still suffers from an editing process that has a touch of ADHD about it as it cuts from angle to angle. There’s a sense that the producers wanted to build on the excitement, which is understandable, but that exciting is right there, in the ring, accompanied by a wonderfully gifted commentary team that keep the pace going.
Once again, Rachel Stringer is only used sparingly on the show, which is another shame. Hopefully, if WoS Wrestling is renewed for a second season, we’ll get more backstage interviews with the competitors
Sha Samuels and CJ Banks, once again, are Rampage’s cronies at ringside, though they’ll hopefully play more of a role in the coming weeks. It’d be a shame to waste that talent.
Again, Alex Shane and Stu Bennett are an antagonistic pairing, especially where Bennett’s bias is concerned, whilst So Cal Val continues to call what she sees against two alpha-male personalities. This week, from Val, we get Alex Shane levels of wordplay – “Prepare to be Robbie X-cited” she exclaims (of X-claims) and, to Alex’s comment of “No little Xs after that”, she replies with “Lowercase xs, huh!”, a pun that will make you groan but really you’ll be wanting more!
A new women’s champion, a “big opportunity”, the next stage of the tag team tournament and the continuing dominance of Rampage, episode 2 of WoS Wrestling is a lean hour of television and represents British wrestling well in the ring.
WoS Wrestling Episode 2 is available for 30 days from broadcast on the ITV Hub.
Images from the WoS Wrestling Twitter feed. Follow them here.