While most of the Japanese pro wrestling world is on hold during the COVID-19 lockdown, some promotions are finding ways to do empty arena shows, similar to what WWE and AEW have done in the US. On Sunday’s episode of Pro Wrestling ZERO1 on Samurai TV, Australian wrestler Chris Vice defeated Kohei Sato to become the new ZERO1 World Heavyweight Champion. The event was taped at Active Advance Pro Wrestling’s 2AW Square venue. Following his victory, fellow Aussie wrestler Hartley Jackson, who left his position as a trainer at the WWE Performance Center last fall to resume his wrestling career, came out to challenge him for a future date.
— ルイススポーツ LOUIS SPORTS (@LOUISO0906) May 3, 2020
Pro Wrestling ZERO1 was founded in 2001 by Yoshiyuki Nakamura and former 3x IWGP Heavyweight Champion and All Japan Triple Crown Champion Shinya Hashimoto, but in 2004, Hashimoto left the promotion and another former Japanese legend, Shinjiro Otani, joined the ownership team, becoming sole owner in 2007 when Nakamura also left the company. Otani is a former J Crown Champion, as well as IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion and 2x IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion.
Chris Vice began his career in the Australian indies in 2004 and spent 13 years with Explosive Pro Wrestling (EPW), where he won the EPW Heavyweight Championship in 2013. In 2018, he headed to Japan and began working with ZERO1, winning the ZERO1 United National Heavyweight Championship that April. He won his second ZERO1 United National Heavyweight title this January, a title he still holds, making him a double champion in ZERO1.
Stay tuned to the Last Word on Pro Wrestling for more on this and other stories from around the world of wrestling, as they develop. You can always count on LWOPW to be on top of the major news in the wrestling world, as well as to provide you with analysis, previews, videos, interviews, and editorials on the wrestling world.