G1 Climax 30 night 3 review is here! After two action packed opening nights, the third night of New Japan’s 2020 G1 Climax has some intriguing match ups, with Will Ospreay colliding with Tomohiro Ishii, and Taichi taking on Suzuki-Gun stablemate Minoru Suzuki. There’s also a big match between Kota Ibushi and Jay White set for the main event, so let’s go straight to the ring and dive into the action!
If you’ve missed any of our coverage for any previous G1 shows, check them out here:
Preliminary Match: Yuya Uemura vs. Gabriel Kidd
As will be the pattern throughout this year’s G1, the night was opened by a non-tournament Young Lions encounter. And as an opener, it was pretty entertaining and did what it needed to do as a Young Lion battle.
Both men worked the arm and wrist first, before taking it to the mat with headscissors and a chin bar. An exchange of chops and elbows followed, with Uemera hitting a dropkick and a hiptoss. Kidd soon found himself in a half-crab but made the ropes.
More back and forth followed with forearms, chops and elbows, before Kidd landed a double underhook suplex for his first win! Both men have real potential, but Kidd more so. I’m excited he got his first win finally.
Jeff Cobb vs. Shingo Takagi on G1 Climax 30 Night 3
Well now. This should an absolute hoss fight. At least on paper.
In actuality, it didn’t quite end up like that. But what we did get was certainly entertaining.
They started by trying to assert their dominance with chops, elbows, and working each other back into the corner. Cobb drew first real blood, though, with a massive overhead suplex. The suplex game continued with a running back suplex but it couldn’t keep Shingo down.
Shingo made a comeback with a clothesline and a back suplex off the ropes. Coming back off a Cobb Exploder, a pumping bomber earned Shingo a near-fall. A Last of the Dragon attempt saw Cobb counter, though, with a side saito suplex, a big gutwrench powerbomb and a beautiful standing moonsault.
A Shingo DDT led to a flurry of offence from the former Neverweight champion, seemingly overwhelming Cobb until he managed to nail a massive German suplex to stun Shingo, followed by Tour of the Islands to take the pinfall victory.
A solid effort, if starting a little slow, and Cobb’s first victory in the tournament, although I’m suprised it came at the expense of Shingo. I’d love to see a rematch where they go at each other, Suzuki-Ishii style.
Yujiro Takahashi vs. Kazuchika Okada on G1 Climax 30 Night 3
Here’s a match we didn’t see a lot of over the summer—oh, wait…
Joking aside, the two are very familiar with each other, which showed early on when Takahashi bit Okada’s hand to get out of a headlock. A clothesline sent Okasa to the outside, where Takahashi nailed him with a neckbreaker and a running kick.
Back in the ring, Takahashi used some basic offence to keep Okada down, using a combination of elbows, kicks, legdrops and kicks, as well as continuous covers to try and snatch the quick win. Okada, though, worked his way out of a chin lock with a series of running forearms and elbows, before nailing a DDT for a near fall.
A plancha onto the outside didn’t do Takahashi too much damage, as he was able to hit a nice Fisherman’s Buster back in the ring. An exchange of forearms led to a dropkick and a tombstone from Okada. Takahashi bit his way out of the subsequent cobra clutch attempt and an Angle Slam and big boot followed. Okada went for a Rainmaker but Takahashi countered with a back slide. Miami Shine followed for a near-fall.
In the end, Takahashi tried to hit Pimp Juice but Okada escaped, nailed a rainmaker and locked in the cobra clutch for the decisive win.
A good match, but lacking, mainly because Takahashi is just not on the level of Okada. Saying that, they got this match out of the way early in the tournament, and there are some exciting matches for Okada moving forward.
Taichi vs. Minoru Suzuki on G1 Climax 30 Night 3
You know how you get a match on a card that you think will be good but actually far exceeds your expectations? This was that match on the card for me.
I knew it was going to be wild to a point—it is a Minoru Suzuki match, after all. But I didn’t know Taichi was going to be this game. Suzuki set the tone from the start, going straight for Taichi’s throat as soon as he entered the ring. Taichi took Suzuki to the mat with a choke of his own. From there they both grabbed chairs, with Taichi knocking Suzuki’s chair to pieces and knocking him outside. Suzuki grabbed another chair, smashing Taichi in the body and the back, before sticking Taichi’s head through a guard rail and choking him with the chair! Brilliantly crazy.
Back in the ring, Suzuki has his chair taken away from him by the ref, allowing Taichi to crack Suzuki with his mic stand. Outside, Suzuki gets choked with a camera wire, and it’s very odd to see Suzuki with a vulnerable expression on his face. A chair shot in the aisle followed and there go the trousers—I don’t know if that’s a good thing or bad!
Taichi comes out on the wrong end of an exchange of kicks and elbows. A first rear naked choke goes awry, but Suzuki tries to covert a second into the Gotch-style piledriver. Taichi escapes and Black Mephisto gives the upset victory!
A really good brawl between the two Suzuki-gun stablemates, what will this do for their relationship moving forward?
Will Ospreay vs. Tomohiro Ishii on G1 Climax 30 Night 3
On paper, this match suggests a clash of styles and yet, considering both of the men involved, it should have been an absolute banger. Sadly, it wasn’t.
I appreciate the story they were trying to tell. Ospreay has moved up to the heavyweights and cockily feels he has to show off his brawn. Unfortunately, Ishii is the wrong man to do that to, so Ishii pounds him. Realising that he can’t compete with Ishii on a power game, Ospreay has to rely on his aerial innovations and athleticism to take Ishii down.
It’s a good story, and logical too, but in execution something was just lacking. I don’t think it helped that the match went that bit too long for what they were doing. Essentially, we had a match of two halves but the transition between the two wasn’t that smooth. Tue first half was quite slow for what it was, whilst the second half, with some admittedly outstanding aerial manoeuvres from Ospreay and brutal strikes from Ishii, felt like a match in its own right. Ospreay took the win with the Stormbreaker, but for such a big win since he moved to the heavyweight division, it felt anti-climactic.
A shame, as there was a lot in there like, and it wasn’t a bad match per se at all, but at the same time it was possibly the biggest disappointment of the night.
Jay White vs. Kota Ibushi on G1 Climax 30 Night 3
Jay White is possibly the most fun heel in wrestling today. Look at the way he tried to get the audience to chant the Ibushi’s name at the start of the match, only to taut them because he knows they’re not allowed to chant. It’s such a d**kish heel move, I love it. And it earned him a kick to the face from Ibushi for his trouble.
This was a really good main event, perhaps not as good as the previous two evenings, but still very entertaining. I’ve been critical of Jay White’s performances in the past but he’s been on fire recently, having some great showings since returning after lockdown. He very logically attacked Ibushi’s knee here, hitting a knee breaker on the apron, a dragonscrew and a TO, whilst taking some shots at the knee while he could. White also hit some lovely looking offence, landing German suplexes, a urange, a Blade Buster and a sleeper suplex. White looked sharp and his offence was crisp.
Ibushi, meanwhile, played the face in peril with great aplomb, fighting back stoically in the face of the attack on his knee. No one can pull a determined face like Ibushi. One incredible moment saw Kota hold White in place for a tombstone. Kota was able to withstand a series of fists to the knee before nailing the move. That took some resilience.
What benefitted this match was that the Bullet Club/Gedo shenanigans were kept to a minimum. Gedo did distract Kota near the end by acting like he was going to throw in the towel, but White’s low blow didn’t even play into the finish, which was surprisingly a clean one, well, sort of: Ibushi kicked Gedo off the apron, allowing White to hit the Blade Runner for the pinfall victory. A hard-earned victory, the perception of White would change dramatically with more wins like that. Not every match has to have Gedo jump in, you know…
This was a solid event that, while not as strong or consistent as the previous two nights, did have two absolute gems in Suzuki-Taichi and White-Ibushi, plus a decent outing for Cobb-Takagi. Okada-Takahashi was relatively painless, and the evening’s biggest disappointment in Ospreay-Ishii had its moments. It’s very much a three-tier table in Block A at the moment, with Ospreay, Taichi and White in the lead at present. The gap isn’t that big yet, though. Will they be able to maintain their lead?
1. Jay White (2-0) (4 pts)
2. Will Ospreay (2-0) (4 pts)
3. Taichi (2-0) (4 pts)
4. Kota Ibushi (1-1) (2 pts)
5. Minoru Suzuki (1-1) (2 pts)
6. Kazuchika Okada (1-1) (2 pts)
7. Jeff Cobb (1-1) (2 pts)
8. Tomohiro Ishii (0-2) (0 pts)
9. Shingo Takagi (0-2) (0 pts)
10. Yujiro Takahashi (0-2) (0 pts)
1. Juice Robinson (1-0) (2 pts)
2. Toru Yano (1-0) (2 pts)
3. Tetsuya Naito (1-0) (2 pts)
4. Zack Sabre Jr. (1-0) (2 pts)
5. KENTA (1-0) (2 pts)
6. Hiroshi Tanahashi (0-1) (0 pts)
7. Hirooki Goto (0-1) (0 pts)
8. YOSHI-HASHI (0-1) (0 pts)
9. SANADA (0-1) (0 pts)
10. EVIL (0-1) (0 pts)