Summer Struggle August 9th: Yoshi-Hashi Wins First Title

Best Match In NEVER Openweight 6-Man Championship History

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(Top Left-Right) Toru Yano, Kazuchika Okada, And Tomohiro Ishii
(Bottom Left-Right) Hirooki Goto And Yoshi-Hashi On August 9, 2020 After The Marquee Finals Match Of The NEVER Openweight 6-Man Championship At Korakuen Hall via New Japan World

The marquee main event of the August 9th Summer Struggle event hosted the finals of the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Championship Tournament and saw a great moment for Yoshi-Hashi.

Two CHAOS teams faced off against one another in what was leaps and bounds the best decision match involving the title since its inception in January 2016.

Kazuchika Okada/Toru Yano/Sho faced off against their unit mates Hirooki Goto/Tomohiro Ishii/Yoshi-Hashi in a highly competitive and physical match which resembled the style the NEVER Openweight Championship (currently held by Shingo Takagi) is famous for.

A memorable exchange saw Yoshi-Hashi go toe to toe with former five-time IWGP Heavyweight Champion Kazuchika Okada for approximately three minutes. During their battle, Yoshi-Hashi managed to lock Okada in his Butterfly Lock technique and surviving Okada’s Money Clip submission.

Goto and Ishii would also have moments where they would shine for their team against a game Toru Yano and Sho. Ishii would have to survive a Cross Arm Breaker from Sho, who has stepped up recently against heavyweight competition.

Ishii would gain the fall for his team over Sho at the 24 minute and 18-second mark after his Sheer Drop Brainbuster technique to capture the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship.

Yoshi-Hashi Wearing One Of The NEVER Openweight 6-Man Championship Belts After Winning His First Title On August 8, 2020 At Korakuen Hall via New Japan World

The New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) English website reported the following after Yoshi-Hashi won the first title during his career:

Post match, YOSHI-HASHI admitted that he had ‘no plan’ in mind for what he’d say in this situation, but nevertheless delivered an inspirational speech. Stating pride that he had ‘finally delivered on a promise,’ the Headhunter stated ‘maybe you’re going through some stuff, but it can all change. Keep standing up. It all changes in an instant.’ Backstage he went on to say that ‘I’ve never been the type to try and look cool, say I’m tough, or that you should respect me. All I’ll say is that I always have enough strength to face tomorrow. And that’s enough’. The new NEVER 6-Man Champions will be back in action on live events starting Tuesday. 

During his post-match comments backstage, Yoshi-Hashi said he would cry in the ring if he can win his first singles championship. NJPW Commentor and Translator, Chris Charlton relayed several messages to English speaking fans.

Since Yoshi-Hashi lost his RevPro Undisputed British Heavyweight Championship challenge to the at the time champion Zack Sabre Jr on June 25, 2019, he has pushed a narrative of always getting back up to fight another day.

His never say die attitude has warmed him to some NJPW fans in the west that were previously critical of the CHAOS member. Now, his long-term story is that of one who will refuse to stay down and will give everything he has to reach his goals.

The NEVER Openweight 6-Man Championship Tournament succeeded in elevating Yoshi-Hashi and the title and could see both placed in more drawing positions in the future.

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