STARDOM
5STAR GRAND PRIX DAY 15
SEPTEMBER 17, 2022
OSAKA EDION ARENA #2
OSAKA, JAPAN

WATCH: STARDOM WORLD

As the 5STAR GP heads into its finishing stretch, we head to Osaka for a show that could be very good, or not very good. Aside from Starlight Kid vs Natsupoi, there’s no guarantee that this show will deliver, which is half the fun sometimes, so let’s get into it.

BLUE STARS
SUZU SUZUKI (4) DEF. SAYA IIDA (4)

Every match from here on out is must-win for Suzu Suzuki and she duly delivered here. You wouldn’t know she was on the brink of elimination from looking at her as she was cocky enough to taunt Iida throughout the match. The match itself was enjoyable, every time Iida tried to power up she was met with a blistering forearm that put her back down, and we all know by now how great Suzuki’s forearms are. ***1/4

RED STARS
MAIKA (12) DEF. UNAGI SAYAKA (2)

Maika and Unagi have always been surprisingly good dance partners and they showed it here. Unagi’s desire to win brought a great energy to the match while Maika, as you’d expect, was having none of it. The post-match interaction between the two carries a lot of weight and it may be something to read into depending on what they do with Sayaka following her failings in the GP this year. ***1/4

RED STARS
RISA SERA (11) VS. MAI SAKURAI (9) – DRAW

I enjoyed the start of this with Sakurai attacking Sera before her entrance music had even stopped playing but once they got to the outside it lost me. Sera swinging people into chairs is still an eye-popping spot but beyond that, I was just waiting for the 20 count, which came after about 3 minutes of them fighting outside. ***

BLUE STARS
MIRAI (12) DEF. MINA SHIRAKAWA (6)

I’m not at all sure how to feel about this match. It’s not exactly my preferred style of wrestling but even then I recognize the quality of what they did. It was a brave choice for Mina and MIRAI to go for such a technical, slow-paced limb work match in the dying days of a tournament that’s been almost all action. One thing is for sure, it was a memorable match and definitely did something that no other match in the tournament has. MIRAI’s performance was great throughout and she’s someone who has really made the most of this GP to me. All I can say is seek this one out and come to your own conclusion, for now I’ll give it an objective ***1/2

RED STARS
SAKI KASHIMA (8) DEF. UTAMI HAYASHISHITA (10)

Saki Kashima has spent the entire year getting beat up only to pull wins out of the bag with her Revival finisher. She did that again in this match against Hayashishita after spending basically the entire match on the back foot. Utami’s offense wasn’t super interesting but I got a good laugh out of the finish **3/4

RED STARS
SYURI (12) DEF. SAKI (6)

Syuri has been quite consistent throughout this tournament and she continued that here against SAKI. This was a very good clash with SAKI’s boots and fighting spirit really shining through against the dominant Syuri.  SAKI doesn’t change things up too much so it’s on her opponent to really elevate things and as you’d expect Syuri obliged here and had one of SAKI’s best matches of the tournament. ***3/4

BLUE STARS
STARLIGHT KID (8) DEF. NATSUPOI (8)

Another chapter in the rivalry between Starlight Kid and Natsupoi is written. They’re unlikely rivals and their feud kind of spawned from nothing, but it’s the kind of grudge that is entirely focused on wanting to be superior in the ring. From High-Speed title draws to tournament matches these two have been paired up time and time again and it always brings out the best in them. After Poi got the win in their Cinderella match it was Kid’s turn to take the spoils as she put away Natsupoi with the Eternal Foe. ***3/4

OVERALL THOUGHTS

Coming into day 15 I was wondering whether I’d get a good show, or a poor show. Turns out it was pretty middle of the road although I’d lean towards saying this was a good time. Aside from Hayashishita vs Kashima everything was good and some matches even flirted with greatness.