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Thursday, February 20, 2020

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Tenille Dashwood vs. Bea Priestley at SPW

Free Match Friday is a weekly feature from Diva Dirt. Every Friday, we’ll spotlight a great indie match available to watch for free online. Some of the best wrestling in the world is happening in high school gyms and sports bars and even, occasionally, in an appropriate venue for a wrestling match. This week, our free match is a stellar scrap between Tenille Dashwood and Bea Priestley at Southern Pro Wrestling.

Tenille Dashwood is about to run out her contract with Ring of Honor. It’s possible she will sign a new one, of course, but it’s just as possible she’ll walk away from ROH and into the warm embrace of All Elite. Certainly, it’s what many are hoping for. If she does jump ship to AEW, we may soon see a rematch of this week’s free match, Dashwood’s only previous meeting with New Zealand’s Bea Priestley, who recently signed with the upstart promotion.

For many a wrestling fan, especially in North America, the distinctions between the nationalities of Dashwood, an Aussie, and Priestley, a Kiwi, may well seem trivial. But in front of a hungry Invercargill crowd, both women play to the fierce, albeit friendly, sports rivalry their homelands have shared over the years. I can hardly think of a better bit of pandering than Dashwood choking Priestley with an All Blacks jersey.

Tenille Dashwood largely dominates the match, and fair enough. Her repertoire is simple, effective and well-done. She knows a lot of moves, she can do them well, and she makes them fit her character. It sounds like basic stuff, but honestly so many wrestlers of all genders get to main event giant pay-per-views without nailing this stuff down. I truly mean it as the highest praise when I say Tenille Dashwood proves herself an extremely competent and technically sound wrestler in this match, even if she doesn’t do anything flashy. Flashy is great, but it’s not everything.

Priestley acquits herself well as the home favorite, playing the wounded deer to Dashwood’s komodo dragon. (Komodo dragons are extremely cruel to their prey, it’s messed up. Don’t look into it if you’re squeamish.) Lots of people hate leg matches and others based around someone targeting a body part, but too bad, because this is a great leg match and you should watch it. Dashwood works Priestley’s knee over without giving it an obnoxious amount of attention and Priestley sells the knee handicap well without coming off non-credible. Just a well-balanced, well-executed match. Congratulations to everyone involved.

Check back in with Diva Dirt next week for another great free match from the world of independent women’s wrestling. You can find even more matches AND support independent women’s wrestling over at ClickWrestle.

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