Giulia, Iwatani retain women’s gold as STARDOM’s late summer heats up

NJPW STRONG, IWGP Women’s titles defended in Osaka

As the G1 Climax reached its conclusion in Ryogoku Sumo Hall Sunday August 13, STARDOM’s own summer was heating up. The women of STARDOM are in the midst of their own premier singles tournament, the 5 Star Grand Prix, and as league battles raged on, STARDOMxSTARDOM 2023 saw summer battles, and two championships from NJPW’s oevure defended.

First was the NJPW STRONG Championship held by Giulia and defended against the fearsome heavyweight contender famed for her work in the Uk’s Pro-Wrestling EVE, Yuu. Yuu’s power and weight advantage was evident as she champion was forced to fight from underneath. Yuu would bear the brunt of Giulia’s strikes and keep coming in a match that passed the 15 mark and closed in on 20; as Yuu hoisted Giulia for a Last Ride however, Giulia escaped, rolling her foe up into a cross armbreaker and then transitioning into the double armbar Bianca submission for the victory. 

Post match, Giulia was confronted by a video challenge from IMPACT’s Deonna Purrazzo and Giselle Shaw; with Momo Kohgo also staking her claim in a message on social media. The NJPW STRONG Women’s title is certainly a scene to keep our eyes on heading into Multiverse United 2 Sunday.

Also on the night’s semi main event, Mayu Iwatani defended the IWGP Women’s Championship against Utami Hayashishita. With legs and back tortured by the challenger throughout, Mayu was in a bad way, but rallied with typical grit and determination.  A Dragon Suplex didn’t get the job done, but the rarely seen step up poison rana, dubbed the Dragonslay, led to victory. 

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