Will Ospreay has won the 2021 New Japan Cup as he defeated Shingo Takagi to win the tournament for the first time on Saturday morning.
NJPW issued the following:
Will Ospreay captures New Japan Cup 2021
Ospreay moves to challenge Kota Ibushi April 4
Will Ospreay is the New Japan Cup 2021 winner, emerging victorious from an incredible main event with Shingo Takagi.
Both men came into the bout with significant damage, Takagi with back taped after a series of intense bouts through the tournament while Ospreay nursed an injured shoulder and broken nose. Still, the two exchanged offensive attempts at a high pace early before a stalemate.
Takagi would be first to target his opponent’s injury, grabbing the nose as he hoisted Ospreay in the corner and dropping him face first across the top rope. Taking the Briton outside, Shingo would tear at the arm and shoulder, but a response came in ring with a handspring overhead kick; fighting fire with fire, Ospreay would send Shingo’s hurt lower back into the guardrails before elevating him back first across the steel.
Slowing the pace, Ospreay would stay on Takagi’s back, with a backbreaker and body scissors keeping the Dragon grounded. Significantly slowed, Shingo was unable to pivot for a Ryukon Lariat, instead using a DDT to plant the Briton before a pop-up DVD gave him more time. Out on the floor however, Bea Priestley would step in between the two combatants, giving Ospreay enough space to send Shingo into the guardrails and set up a table at ringside; the table would remain unbroken as both re-entered the ring, but Ospreay would be caught with a pop-up powerbomb for two, before being dropped with Noshigami across the hurt nose.
The Commonwealth Kingpin would be able to expertly change gears against Shingo, a flip kick and enzuigiri stunning Takagi before a lariat rocked him hard. A dropkick to a Takagi precariously perched on the top rope would be followed by a Spanish Fly for two, but Shingo would catch an OsCutter attempt and counter with a Ryukon lariat before unloading with forearm blows.
A Pumping Bomber from Takagi was incredibly evaded with a backflip from Ospreay, who connected with an OsCutter in one fluid motion. Going for broke, Ospreay repeated the move out on the floor to Takagi, before positioning him on the ringside table, which was smashed with a 450 off the top rope.
Ospreay was willing to take the countout victory over Takagi, but the Dragon would not let the match end, rolling back inside only to be met with a Shooting Star Press for two at the 25 minute mark. His opponent all but unconscious, Ospreay tried to hoist Takagi for an OsCutter, but frustrated at the dead weight, instead went to Kawada kicks that only served to fire his opponent up. Takagi would dump Ospreay with Made In Japan for two, and followed with a Pumping Bomber attempt, but this too was countered with a Spanish Fly that got a nearfall. Finally with the match his for the taking however, a rolling elbow, Hidden Blade and then Stormbreaker sealed the deal as Ospreay emerged victorious.
Now the second man to win both Best of the Super Jr. and New Japan Cup will challenge the first, Kota Ibushi at Sakura Genesis for the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship April 4.