The co Best of the Super Juniors (BOSJ 27) and World Tag League 2020 (WTL 2020) tournaments got underway on November 15, 2020. The event at the Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium drew a crowd of 2,558 (reduced crowd due to Coronavirus, 2019), and witnessed the largest card since New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) returned from the COVID-19 (Coronavirus, 2019) delay.
The eighth match of the event and the fourth BOSJ 27 match of the card saw two-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion and BOSJ 19 (2012) winner, “Funky Weapon” Ryusuke Taguchi take on Suzuki-Gun member El Desperado.
Fans new to NJPW over the past year will have seen a normally light-hearted Taguchi take to the ring. While he wishes to gain positive results, he wants to do so without taking himself too seriously. However, BOSJ is the time where Taguchi shows that he remains a fantastic in-ring competitor and can compete against any junior heavyweight in the world.
El Desperado came into BOSJ wanting to prove he was ready to take the next step as a singles competitor, especially with his IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion tag team partner “Heel Master” Yoshinobu Kanemaru misses BOSJ 27 with a nagging knee injury.
The match was extremely competitive, with Taguchi showing he could dictate terms to Desperado, who was coming off several impressive singles performances throughout 2020. He would put Taguchi on his back foot several times due to his physicality, making for a dramatic opening match for both athletes.
Taguchi would gain the fall with a cradle at the 12 minutes and 35 seconds mark, picking up a surprise 2 points in what could be considered an upset if onlookers judge based on the wrestlers recent form.
Taguchi next faces former three-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion Hiromu Takahashi on November 18th, while Desperado faces reigning IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion “Bone Soldier” Taiji Ishimori on the same night.