Five women, you ask? Well, yes.
When the tournament was announced to crown a singles champion (the first in WAVE’s 5 and a half year history), the four participants were laid out as Ohka, Ayumi Kurihara, Mio Shirai and Misaki Ohata. However on February 16, Kurihara was forced to withdraw before the semi-finals which were due to take place the following day due to a nasal and orbital floor fracture – so she was replaced by Kana.
Ohka and Kana advanced, defeating Ohata and Shirai respectively, though a diversion was thrown in the road when Kurihara was allowed to take over Kana’s spot in the tournament if she could recover by today’s event and then defeat her on the undercard. Kana won that match to secure her spot in the final, while Ohka – who was given a match of her own on the show to make sure she didn’t have an unfair advantage for the finals – defeated GAMI. Twists and turns over with, Kana and Ohka then met in the main event, with the 33-year old winning the match, the tournament and the title with a big boot, securing the highest profile singles title in the 11-year pro’s history.
Beating Kana was also a retribution of sorts, as the result is a reversal of a match between the pair in WAVE on November 27 last year – after which, Kana said that Ohka did not have the right to call herself the “ace” of WAVE because of the defeat. Following today’s victory in front of 467 fans at Shinjuku FACE in Tokyo, Japan, the new titleholder vowed to make the championship the most prestigious in the women’s wrestling world.
The win goes along with the success of the former “athtress” in the inaugural Catch The WAVE tournament back in 2009 where she topped her Visual Technical block then beat Ryo Mizunami, Kana and Kurihara in a tournament to win the whole shebang.
– Lee Burton
– Photo by Kenji Misaki