G1 Climax 30: Okada v Ibushi
The Night One Marquee Felt Like Wrestle Kingdom
The marquee match of G1 Climax 30 Night One, saw former five-time IWGP Heavyweight Champion CHAOS member Kazuchika Okada take on former NEVER Openweight and IWGP Intercontinental Champion Kota Ibushi.
Ibushi wanted to avenge his loss to Okada during Wrestle Kingdom 14 Night One when he was unable to capture the IWGP Heavyweight Championship as he made the V5 challenge during Okada’s fifth reign as champion.
The reduced Edion Arena Osaka crowd in Osaka, Japan was 2,401 strong, nearly half of its normal capacity; due to COVID-19 (Coronavirus 2019) safety protocols, added to the ‘big match’ atmosphere throughout the contest.
Neither athlete wished to make the first mistake, therefore there was a feeling out stage early on. Okada and Ibushi came across as evenly matched, a far cry from Ibushi’s form when he first entered the heavyweight division several years ago.
When Ibushi needed a big moment during the match to counter Okada, he was able to find it. At times using his world-class athleticism to fight his way out of difficult predicaments.
Okada looked focused on using his Money Clip, Cobra Clutch technique throughout to gain the submission over Ibushi, but Kota was able to find his way out multiple times during the contest.
The match would come to a dramatic conclusion when Okada showed a bit of arrogance, allowing Ibushi to catch him with a flurry — topped off with the Kamigoye technique to gain the fall and 2 points within Block A of G1 Climax 30.
The victory for Ibushi would be his second consecutive G1 Climax victory over Okada, having defeated him last year during G1 Climax 29.
Despite the momentum for the defending G1 Climax tournament champion, Ibushi will have to stay on top form to stave off other Block A favorites Okada and “Switchblade” Jay White. Yet, his victory over Okada grants him the tiebreaker if the two were to finish with the same point total.