ROH WRESTLING TELEVISION, Episode 344
ROH brings us the final two rounds of the WOH Championship Tournament! First, the semifinals feature Tenille Dashwood VS Sumie Sakai and Kelly Klein VS Mayu Iwatani. Then the finals will pit the winners against each other to decide THE inaugural Women of Honor Champion!
All images courtesy of the Fite.TV app and streaming service
- Kelly Klein VS Mayu Iwatani, WOH Championship Tournament Semifinal match; Kelly wins and advances to the finals.
- Tenille Dashwood VS Sumie Sakai, WOH Championship Tournament Semifinal match; Sumie wins and advances to the finals.
- WOH Championship Tournament Finals: Kelly Klein VS Sumie Sakai; Sumie wins and becomes the inaugural WOH Champion.
PLAY BY PLAY
It’s a WOH Championship Tournament encore special!
The ROH Women’s Division is making history with this internationally flavored championship tournament. The Gatekeeper, Kelly Klein, cheated the Exotic Goddess out of her dream while the Icon of Stardom, Mayu Iwatani, shocked the Virtuosa. Super Sumie swept Oedo Tai’s Hana Kimura and Kagetsu while Tenille made it all about her, knocking Mrs. American Nightmare, Brandi Rhodes, out of the spotlight. Now with the semifinals set, who will take the next step into the WOH Championship match?
Kelly Klein VS Mayu Iwatani, WOH Championship Tournament Semifinal match!
The Pretty Badass knows the Icon of Stardom is “a tremendous addition” to this tournament and division. But no one is going to come into her ring, the ring she’s dominated for two years, and take that title before she does. Mayu vows to take the title around the world and build its prestige. Both women have been atop their respective promotions, but who will prove themselves the bigger star in this first-ever encounter?
The fans duel between the two already as Mayu holds out a hand for the Code of Honor. Kelly declines, and the match begins. The fans rally as two of the best circle. They tie up, and Kelly shoves Mayu right down. But Mayu springs right back up and circles with Kelly again. They tie up again and now Mayu shoves Kelly. Mayu dares Kelly to get some, Kelly runs out and Mayu gets around her for the waistlock. Kelly reverses with a headlock takeover but Mayu headscissors. Kelly rolls around and gets the mount but Mayu rolls and the two end up by the ropes. The referee calls for the break, and Kelly gives it. Fans applaud while Kelly backs off to adjust her ponytail. Mayu gets up and they circle again.
Kelly lunges but Mayu dodges, and Mayu gets the waistlock back. Kelly reverses to a wristlock and whip, but Mayu blocks. It’s a tug-o-war but also a stalemate, so Mayu breaks free to back kick Kelly. Mayu runs and slides under Kelly’s clothesline, then sweeps the legs. Kelly sits up, and Mayu hits her with a swift kick! Mayu sits Kelly up for the running dropkick. Fans fire up with Mayu while Kelly rolls to the ropes. Mayu is upon her, but Kelly throws a forearm. Kelly teeters on the apron as Mayu hits her back. Mayu ducks Kelly’s forearm, but Kelly grabs her between the ropes for a knee strike. Mayu falls back while Kelly returns. Kelly walks over to Mayu in the corner for more forearms, and a discus clothesline. Kelly runs and boots Mayu run down! Cover, TWO.
Fans duel again while Kelly toys with Mayu. She keeps pushing and kicking Mayu, but Mayu hits back! Mayu chops Kelly overhand then backhand, then overhand again! Mayu gives another double chop, but Kelly knees back. Kelly has Mayu in the cravat hold and drives in knees. Kelly snapmares Mayu but Mayu ducks under the buzzsaw to roll Kelly up! TWO, and Kelly clobbers Mayu with a clothesline! Kelly covers, TWO! The Gatekeeper is annoyed but in control while we go to break.
ROH returns to Kelly dragging Mayu up in a chinlock. Fans rally and Mayu powers Kelly back into a corner. Kelly keeps going, climbing up to hold Mayu in a hanging sleeper!
The referee counts but Kelly lets go at 3. She drops Mayu to the mat, but Mayu revives to slap Kelly across the face! Mayu then climbs up, but Kelly resists. Kelly clubs and forearms away on Mayu’s back then knocks her down. Mayu staggers but comes back to roundhouse Kelly. Mayu slaps Kelly again then fires up before climbing again. She stands on the very top and hits a SUPER STEINER!
The fans fire up with Mayu as she climbs up again. Kelly stands up and Mayu hits her with a missile dropkick. Mayu positions Kelly into a drop zone then climbs up a third time. She takes aim and jumps, but Kelly avoids the double stomps. Kelly rushes Mayu, but runs into Mayu’s SUPERKICK! Mayu walks on Kelly to get back to the corner, and she climbs up once again. Mayu takes aim, and hits the double stomps!
But Mayu isn’t done there, she repositions Kelly before climbing up again. For the Frog Splash! Cover, TWO! Mayu can’t believe Kelly survived two big moves like that. Fans duel again while Kelly stirs. Mayu gets around and wants the full nelson, but Kelly breaks free. Kelly whips Mayu but Mayu goes for huricanrana, only for Kelly to block! Kelly hoists Mayu up onto her shoulders, preparing a powerbomb, but Mayu spins around to Reverse-Rana Kelly down! Mayu O’Conner rolls back for a cover, TWO!! But that won’t slow Mayu down, she calls to end it. She drags Kelly up, elevated waistlock, but as she goes for the full nelson, Kelly breaks free again. Kelly spins Mayu around, jumping DDT! But Kelly isn’t done there, she lifts Mayu in fireman’s carry for the Samoan Driver!
Cover, TWO!? Kelly is shocked, but the fans are loving this. Kelly drags Mayu up for another go, but Mayu slips out. Mayu hits the Northern Lights! TWO! Not even using one of Kelly’s favorites is enough. But Mayu drags Kelly up again. She brings Kelly around but Kelly still resists the full nelson. Kelly snap suplexes then rolls through into the guillotine!
Mayu is trapped as Kelly rolls and pulls. Fans rally while Mayu endures, but she fades! The referee calls it, Kelly wins!
Winner: Kelly, by referee’s stoppage
The Gatekeeper holds on a bit longer to make her message clear. She eliminates one of the best in the world, because she herself is one of the best. Who will meet her in the finals to determine THE best in the WOH Division?
Tenille Dashwood VS Sumie Sakai, WOH Championship Tournament Semifinal match!
Oedo Tai’s Hana Kimura and Kagetsu tried to keep Sumie down, but not even a cheap shot and beat down could stop ROH’s Wonder Woman of Honor. Meanwhile, the newest addition to the ROH Women’s Division wants the spotlight all to herself. Who will meet The Gatekeeper in the final round for all the glory?
Unlike Kelly Klein, Tenille and Sumie both uphold the Code of Honor. These two respect each other and the fans respect that. The bell rings and the two rush at each other, Tenille spinning Sumie around to clobber her with a clothesline! Cover, TWO! Sumie is ready this time, she counters Tenille’s clothesline with the swinging fisherman neckbreaker!
Cover, TWO! Sumie keeps on Tenille with a forearm, but Tenille hits back with her own. They go back and forth, and Tenille gets an edge. She backs Sumie up against the ropes then runs, but Sumi follows and catches her with a forearm of her own! Sumie runs, but Tenille follows and catches Sumie with an elbow. Tenille puts Sumie in a corner and bounces her off the buckles again and again. She then goes to the outside to put Sumie in the tarantula! Tenille lets go at 3, and Sumie gets to the apron. Sumie shoulders in but Tenille counters that with a kick, then the neckbreaker hotshot. Sumie tumbles to the floor and Tenille decides to go up. Tenille keeps an eye on Sumie while the fans fire up, she JUMPS!
Down goes Sumie! Tenille fires up then puts Sumie in the ring. Cover, TWO, and Tenille grows frustrated. Fans rally while Sumie stirs. Tenille grabs a leg and sits down to put on a Deathlock. Sumie endures and fights back, but Tenille keeps the hold. So Sumie reaches over and slaps Tenille in the face! Tenille comes back with a forearm, but can’t maintain the leglock. Both women crawl, but Tenille is up first. She brings Sumie up but Sumie fires off Mongolian double chop after chop. Sumie is all fired up but Tenille grabs her in a waistlock. Sumie reverses that to a wristlock takedown, and cross arm breaker!
Tenille reaches and rolls, clasping the hands. Sumie smacks away at Tenille’s free arm, but Tenille won’t let go. Tenille keeps pushing and rolls Sumie, but Sumie rolls them right back. Tenille tries again and gets a cover, TWO, and now Sumie shifts into a crossface!
Sumie even smothers Tenille’s nose and mouth with her forearm, cutting off the air supply. Tenille endures being wrenched back and starts prying herself free, so Sumie stands up to stomp her out. Sumie drags Tenille and whips her to a corner, but Tenille slips out to the apron as Sumie runs in. Tenille punches Sumie then slides under for the prawn hold, TWO. Sumie runs back in, but into a drop toehold that sends her face first into buckles! Tenille then goes corner to corner to give Sumie a #TasteOfTenille!
Cover, TWO! The fans rally while Tenille keeps focus. She drags Sumie up and onto the top rope. Tenille climbs up but Sumie fights back. Sumie kicks Tenille away, to hit a big missile dropkick! Cover, TWO! Sumie keeps going, bringing Tenille up for a half-straitjacket suplex, and the bridge! TWO! But Sumie keeps herself fired up, and runs, but into Tenille’s sit-out powerbomb! Cover, TWO!! Tenille is frustrated, she was so close but so far away. The fans rally as both women slowly stand. Tenille runs but Sumie rolls her then spins her around for the rolling cuter, Smash Mouse!
Cover, TWO!? Sumie’s standing finisher isn’t enough? But Sumie refocuses as she climbs up top. Tenille springs up to stop her, then climbs up to join her, SUPER German Suplex! Cover, TWO?! Tenille grows frustrated. She demands Sumie stand up, then runs, but Sumie dodges the Spotlight kick! Crucifix roll up, Sumie wins!!
Winner: Sumie, by pinfall
ROH’s Ray of Sunshine shocks Tenille and many of the ROH fans in attendance. Whether or not it was an upset, we now know who will face Kelly Klein in the finals. Kelly herself returns while Ian Riccaboni congratulates them both on their wins, while holding the WOH Championship belt.
As is customary in Stardom and many wrestling promotions around the world, it is now time for a photo opportunity involving both contenders. Kelly hops into the ring and they both stand with Ian and the belt.
One of these two women will be the inaugural champion in front of the sold-out Supercard of Honor crowd. At this time, the contenders are to shake hands to uphold the Code of Honor before their match. Sumie offers, and Kelly actually accepts. But then she gives Sumie a cheap shot! Fans are a mix of boos and cheers as Kelly backs off to let the referees check on Sumie. The Gatekeeper doesn’t seem to care for honor, only for winning. Will she pay for showing no respect? Or is it inevitable that she becomes THE WOH Champion?
An original woman of ROH is ringside to witness history!
It’s the Scream Queen herself, Daffney!
WOH Championship Tournament Finals: Kelly Klein VS Sumie Sakai!
It is time! The first ever ROH Women’s Champion will be either The Gatekeeper, who has yet to be pinned or submitted, or the Ray of Sunshine whose optimism never falters. Who makes history with a single victory?
Sumie makes the first move, going right at Kelly with forearms! These are all payback for the cheap shot from earlier on! Referee Todd Sinclair pulls Sumie away long enough to signal. The bell rings, and Sumie again goes all out on Kelly! Kelly shoves Sumie but Sumie’s right back on her with more furious forearms in a corner. Sumie even stomps away on Kelly’s shoulders, firing up the fans. The referee counts and Sumie backs off at 4. Kelly slowly stands while Sumie runs, Kelly gets Sumie with the German Suplex! The referee checks on the dazed Sumie while Kelly finally has time to put in her mouth guard.
Kelly watches Sumie reach for ropes. She drags Sumie up and whips her into a corner, then whips her in and out. Kelly tries again but Sumie reverses to bounce Kelly off buckles. Sumie runs again, wheelbarrow cover, TWO. Sumie runs again, but into a stungun hotshot! She stumbles down and falls out of the ring while Kelly catches her breath. Kelly then goes out to fetch Sumie, throwing her into barriers. Fans are mixed as Kelly brings Sumie up and throws her into more barriers. Kelly lifts Sumie again for the snap suplex to the mat, then rolls through for the guillotine!
Submissions don’t matter outside the ring, but Kelly is doing it for the damage. She does let go as the referee counts, while we go to break.
ROH returns once more, to Kelly putting Sumie back in the ring. She covers, TWO, to Kelly’s annoyance. Kelly drags Sumie up while fans rally. Kelly hoists Sumie up to the top rope sideways, then climbs up to join her. She lifts Sumie but Sumie fights back! Sumie slips under and around, for a type of Schoolgirl Powerbomb!
Sumie fires herself up and the fans follow. She runs, but into Kelly’s Fall Away!
Sumie rolls to ropes but Kelly walks over. Sumie kicks and hits the swinging fisherman! Fans rally for Sumie as she runs again, and she wheelbarrows, but Kelly blocks! Kelly bounces Sumie’s face off the mat, then throws her with a wheelbarrow German suplex! Both women are down, and the fans are rallying again. They each crawl to ropes, and out comes the rest of the WOH locker room! Every woman from Mandy Leon to Deonna Purrazzo to Karen Q are now ringside to rally along with the fans! Kelly and Sumie crawl towards each other and start brawling with forearms. They go back and forth, Sumie hitting harder.
They stand and keep going, no backing down in either woman. Sumie fires off so many forearms, then runs, but into a boot! Kelly covers, TWO! Fans and women wrestlers alike rally while Kelly drags Sumie up. Kelly hits the Northern Lights, TWO! The frustration grows in Kelly, but there’s still fight in Sumie. Another rally builds as the two stand again. Kelly clubs but Sumie spins around for a Fisherman BUSTER!
Sumie puts Kelly in position, then walks all over her before climbing up. Sumie MOONSAULT, but Kelly dodges just enough. Kelly pushes Sumie away, so Sumie kicks her down. Sumie goes after Kelly, trying for some kind of hammerlock driver, but Kelly resists. In that case, Sumie just drives Kelly down with a DDT! Cover, SUMIE WINS!
Winner: Sumie, by pinfall; NEW WOH Champion
Sumie makes history! An ROH original, a 16-year veteran in the business, and she is the first-ever ROH Women of Honor Champion!
On top of that, this is the first time anyone has pinned or submitted Kelly Klein since she joined ROH. That detail alone has Kelly stunned. She exits the ring while the others enter to celebrate with the new champion. The ROH fans also cheer for Sumie as she holds the belt up high. Sumie is the first champion of WOH, long may she reign!
A great show for ROH, even if it was all encored footage. Kelly VS Mayu was a great match, even with the sloppier parts. Reverse-Ranas are tricky. But Kelly goes over because she’s the only Heel of the four, and because it’s probably too soon for a Stardom wrestler to be stronger than a WOH staple. Tenille VS Sumie was also a good match, the false finishes were well done. I’m a little disappointed the fans booed that Sumie beat Tenille, but maybe she wasn’t the expected or wanted winner between the two. But most of those fans did like her over Kelly, especially after Kelly adds Heel heat with that cheap shot during the photo op.
Kelly VS Sumie itself was fun, and it was a great detail to have the WOH Division appear as the match was ramping up. It seems like the finish was a half-botch, as Sumie couldn’t quite get the exact move she wanted. Kelly still sold like a champ, and Sumie is a great choice for the first WOH Champion. Honestly, if there was ever a moment for “You Deserve It!”, it was Sumie winning. She’s been Women’s Champion of other promotions, but this is definitely the biggest championship she’s held.
My Score: 8/10