AEW’s Women’s World Championship Eliminator Tournament has certainly turned heads, especially when they announced the participants.
The sixteen woman bracket will feature wrestlers from the U.S. and Japan. The Japanese bracket is fantastic and features names from several influential Joshi promotions such as Tokyo Joshi Pro, ChokoPro, Marvelous and SEAdLINNNG.
Let’s take a look at the amazing competitors ready to throw down in Japan for the chance to challenge for the AEW women’s championship.
Aja Kong is a Japanese wrestling legend with thirty-five years experience and is widely regarded as one of the best female wrestlers ever. Kong is a powerful and intimidating presence in the ring and one of the best monster heels of all time. She has dominated Japanese wrestling for decades and has all of the championships to prove it. Kong has held a multitude of titles throughout her legendary career.
Kong’s appearance in the tournament brings threat, awe and legitimacy to it. Even at the age of 50, she still proves to be every bit the threat she has been throughout her tenured career, making her one of the favourites. Although whoever beats her will instantly become the favourite to win the entire thing.
Maki Itoh is currently one of the most popular wrestlers in Japan. She is wildly entertaining, boasts bags of charisma, and has a wicked and raucous attitude. She is a tenacious, resilient and defiant fighter who can play both the underdog and the aggressor excellently. Itoh is a joy to watch both in and out of the ring. She is a fiery, feisty and madcap wrestler who genuinely does not give a f*ck what anyone thinks.
Itoh began her wrestling career in 2013 appearing for DDT where she became a five-time DDT Iron Man Heavy Metal Champion. She joined Tokyo Joshi Pro in 2017 where she held the International Princess Championship, which she lost Thunder Rosa in a great match.
With Itoh’s boundless energy, magnetic personality and standout style, she is definitely one of the top names to win the tournament.
Also known as Asuka, Veny is an incredible talent, and at just twenty-two, years of age is already a six-year pro. They are strong, athletic and hard-hitting with a remarkable ability to excel at all wrestling styles.
Veny has wrestled for multiple promotions across Japan but mainly for Pro Wrestling Wave, SEAdLING and DDT. They have held several titles throughout their young career and will undoubtedly be looking to add the AEW Women’s World Championship to their list.
Veny’s ability, look, and charisma has had the Joshi world buzzing for the last couple of years, and now they get to show their skills to the AEW audience.
Yuka Saskazaki is easily one of the best wrestlers in the world right now. Her combination of speed, high-flying offence and powerful attacks make her a captivating presence whenever she steps into the ring. She is the face of Tokyo Joshi Pro and embodies the promotion’s style with her fun, chaotic and exciting personality.
Sakazaki debuted for TJPW in 2013 and has been one of their top performers since. She is the second-longest title holder in the promotion’s history. She held the Princess of Princess Championship for a whopping 428-days.
The “Magic Girl” isn’t a stranger to the AEW fanbase as she appeared for the promotion regularly in 2019 and the beginning of 2020. Sakazaki would be a welcome addition to the AEW women’s division no matter how far she gets in the tournament.
Emi Sakura is a name that encapsulates the word legend. Sakura is a highly-skilled wrestler with multiple titles and accomplishments, but she is known for being so much more. Her contributions to the Japanese indie scene as a trainer, promoter are legendary. Sakura is the founder of Ice Ribbon and was solely responsible for training the most of the roster from 2006-2012. Sakura then created Gatoh Move Pro Wrestling, which is an innovative, creative and unique wrestling promotional held inside a disused shop/store
Sakura’s inclusion in the AEW Women’s World Championship Eliminator Tournament adds prestige and credibility to the competition. Sakura is a name wrestler that elevates her opponents while proving she has the ability and experience to go all the way.
At just twenty-one years old, the “Apple Girl” already has five years of wrestling experience and a tonne of matches under her belt. Suruga honed her craft mainly for Gatoh Move Pro Wrestling under the expert tutelage of Emi Sakura. She is an excellent all-round wrestler known for her high-speed and acrobatic style. Her fun personality and unique heel alter-ego, Mei Saint-Michel also give her an amazing aura.
Suruga is an energetic and enthusiastic talent with a very bright future, and the AEW women’s title tournament will prove it to a whole new audience.
Rin Kadokura is a highly-skilled and credible wrestler with six-years in-ring experience. She debuted in 2016 for Marvelous and has continued to do as well as appearing for SEAdLING, Sendai and STARDOM.
Kadokura is an impressive striker with tonnes of fire, ferocity and passion. She is a technical, strong and violent performer who could easily go all the way in the AEW tournament.
Ryo Mizunami is a well-travelled sixteen-year veteran who currently wrestles for SEAdLING. She made her debut for now-defunct GAEA promotion in 2005 and has stormed her way through through the majority of the Joshi companies.
Mizunami is a charismatic but no-nonsense striker with a tonne of swift and powerful offence. She is a consistently emphatic performer with a varied, inventive and effective move set. Her skills and experience make her a formidable opponent in the tournament and one not easily cast aside.
Mizunami appeared for AEW back in 2019, and it would be great to see her back stateside again for the finals of the tournament.
What do you make of the Japanese bracket and who do you think is winning? Sound off in the comments below.