In addition to a month of good-to-great matches, another cool thing about New Japan Pro-Wrestling’s iconic G1 Climax tournament is that it provides a simple, logical, competition-based reason for wrestlers to continue working with each other after it’s over.
That’s on display in the matches NJPW recently announced for two upcoming events.
Royal Quest in London already had a marquee match-up with FTR defending their IWGP Tag titles against Aussie Open. But it’s a two-night affair, and while they’re working, the Top Guys aren’t defending any of their belts on Sunday. Night two will be headlined by Tetsuya Naito and Zack Sabre, Jr. The winner will get a shot at IWGP United States champion Will Ospreay somewhere down the line, but the match will also be a chance for ZSJ to make up for his two minute loss to Naito in the G1.
Night two will also have a trios match which will further issues between current and former Bullet Club members that have been festering since before the tournament... and lead to a singles match back in Japan.
Here’s the full line-up for both shows. The cards feature lots of talent from Rev Pro, New Japan’s partner in the UK.
Sat., Oct. 1
• FTR (c) vs. Aussie Open for the IWGP Tag Team championship
• Will Ospreay vs. Shota Umino (non-title)
• Gedo, Doc Gallows, Karl Anderson & Jay White vs. Hikuleo, Jado, Hiroshi Tanahashi & Tama Tonga
• Tomohiro Ishii and Kazuchika Okada vs. JONAH and Bad Dude Tito
• Hiromu Takahashi, SANADA & Tetsuya Naito vs. DOUKI, El Desperado & Zack Sabre Jr.
• Gideon Grey & The Great-O-Khan vs. Ricky Knight Jr. & Michael Oku
• Kanji & Jazzy Gabert vs. Alex Windsor & Ava White
• Gabriel Kidd vs. Dan Moloney
Sun., Oct. 2
• Tetsuya Natio vs. Zack Sabre Jr.
• Doc Gallows, Karl Anderson & Jay White vs. Hikuelo, Tama Tonga & Hiroshi Tanahashi
* Kazuchika Okada vs. Bad Dude Tito
• Tomohiro Ishii vs. JONAH
• Gabriel Kidd, Shota Umino, Ricky Knight Jr. & FTR vs. Gideon Grey, Great-O-Khan, Will Ospreay & Aussie Open
• Jazzy Gabert vs. Ava White in the first round of the IWGP Women’s title tournament
• Hiromu Takahashi & SANADA vs. Young Guns (Ethan Allen & Luke Jacobs)
• DOUKI & El Desperado vs. Michael Oku & Robbie X
The following week, NJPW will be back in Japan for their Declaration of Power show on Oct. 10. We don’t have a full card for that yet, but what we do know is that G1 winner Kazuchika Okada will look to avenge his lone loss in the tourney. And the latest Bullet Club war continues with a big battle when White defends his IWGP World Heavyweight title against Tama Tonga, the man he kicked out of the Biz Cliz — and who beat him to keep him out of the G1 semi-finals.
We’re also told to expect the return of KUSHIDA after his recent health issues.
Here’s what we know about Declaration of Power:
• Jay White (c) vs. Tama Tonga for the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship
• Kazuchika Okada vs. JONAH
• Taiji Ishimori vs. KUSHIDA (non-title)
• Shingo Takagi vs. EL Phantasmo in a “Who’s Your Daddy” match for KOPW 2022 Trophy
• Ren Narita homecoming match
All shows will be available with English commentary on New Japan’s streaming service, NJPWWorld.