“History in the Making” is Southern Pro Wrestling (SPW NZ)’s tag line for the Southern Rumble this Saturday, and that is not selling it short. This will be the largest independent wrestling show in the history of New Zealand. Taking place at the ILT Stadium in Invercargill, pre sales are the largest in SPW’s history, and that’s not surprising. With names like Will Ospreay, Bea Priestley, and Tenille Dashwood, and perhaps the hottest feud in the company’s history, let’s run down the card:
Two Out of Three Falls Match for the SPW NZ Tag Team Championship: The CruiserMates (Falcon Kid & Luke Fury) (c) vs. NZXT (Mason Daniels & Michael Richards)
The CruiserMates and NZXT are the only two tag team champions in SPW history, as the belts were newly minted in March of this year. Each team has a record of 1-1 against each other in tag team title matches, so the 2 out of 3 falls stipulation makes perfect sense for the blowoff. The baby face CruiserMates lost their first outing against NZXT, but won the second, and I expect the falls to go the same way, with the ‘Mates coming out on top in the end. SPW will be looking to keep the crowd happy for most of the night, and keeping the belts on the baby faces will do just that. They’re a great high-flying duo that a perfect addition to any card, so there’s no reason to take it off them.
Prediction: The CruiserMates
“Powerhouse” T-Rex vs. Gino Gambino
T-Rex, former SPW Heavyweight Champion, is going head to head with the current MCW Heavyweight Champion. Gambino, who recently turned heel to get the MCW crown. This is a special attraction match, and will certainly play off a “Big Man” style of wrestling. While the crowd will be excited to see Gambino there, expect them to be fully behind T-Rex. Ultimately, Gambino will go over, as MCW will want to protect their belt.
Prediction: Gino Gambino
Will Ospreay vs. “Hooligan” Marcus Kool
Ospreay is by far the biggest name on the card, and this is neither the first nor the last time that he’ll be working for SPW. He has been very outspoken about his desire to develop the Aussie and New Zealand wrestling scene. Ospreay worked the Southern Rumble Match last year, and this year is featured with fellow Brit Marcus Kool. Kool is a solid worker, and although he isn’t on the level of Ospreay (few are), this will be a very good match, as Kool is spectacular at his character.
Prediction: Will Ospreay
Tenille Dashwood vs. Bea Priestley
Dashwood, formerly known as Emma in WWE, is native to Melbourne, Australia, and so will be very well received in the nearby New Zealand. Priestley, on the other had, while being born in the UK, spent some time living in New Zealand, and will be well received also. This is a high-profile match for SPW, having two well known names on the indy scene in the same match. Priestley will come out on top in the end, as there is a good chance she will return much sooner than Dashwood, and they’ll want to keep her strong her next appearance.
Prediction: Bea Priestley
20-Man Southern Rumble Match
This match will be performed under the same stipulations as WWE’s Royal Rumble Match, with the winner getting a shot at the SPW New Zealand Heavyweight Championship. These are notoriously hard to predict, but there are things that we can piece together. Since the babyface is most likely leaving with the title, a heel will probably win to challenge him at Halloween Haunting. The best option in storyline is Will Power, who interfered in Kane Khan and JK Moody’s first title match, so Khan will have unfinished business with Power. Power will be entering number one, but expect some heel tactics (hiding under the ring, anyone?) to propel to be the last one standing, and to challenged Khan, so they can tie up that loose end.
Prediction: Will Power
TLC Match for the SPW New Zealand Heavyweight Championship: JK Moody (c) vs. Kane Khan
Expect this to be the match of the night, folks. This one is two years in the making. Khan and Moody debuted two years ago at the Southern Rumble as a tag team named the Deadly Sins. Last year at the Southern Rumble, they were the last two participants, where Moody won, and successfully won the title from T-Rex at last year’s Halloween Haunting. As Khan came out to celebrate with his partner, Moody turned on him, smashing his face with the belt. Their match at Fight for Gold was thrown out due to Will Power’s interference, but this time, under TLC rules, there will be a winner. Neither man has been in a TLC match before, but these two are very hungry, so expect this to be bonkers. Since this is the blowoff to their mega feud, anticipate some brutal spots with a very climactic ending. In the end, though, the time has come for Khan to finally exorcise his demons, and find redemption for Moody’s deadly sins.
Prediction: Kane Khan