Just over two years after their first meeting in the 2018 5STAR Grand Prix Finals, Utami Hayashishita finally overcame “The Icon” Mayu Iwatani, this time for the World of Stardom Championship on the line. Taking place in the main event of Stardom’s first ever event at the Sendai Sun Plaza, Utami whipped out a brand new maneuver—a spinning variation of a Crucifix Bomb—to put an end to Mayu Iwatani’s year-long reign as the top champion.
— We Are Stardom (@we_are_stardom) November 15, 2020
The match was a 24-minute barnburner, with both women determined to one-up each other from start to finish. While the Sendai crowd is not as vocal as somewhere like Tokyo or Osaka, Mayu and Utami gave it their all and brutalized each other, with both women kicking out of the other’s typical finishing maneuvers. While Mayu has proven to be one of the best big-match wrestlers in Joshi today, she fell just short of the victory against the Kagoshima Supernova.
The new champion got to her throne by way of this year’s 5STAR Grand Prix, where she righted the wrong of two years ago and triumphed over Himeka in the finals of the tournament. With the thumbs up from many key members of the Bushiroad era Stardom office (Most notably Stardom Trainer Milano Collection AT), it was common knowledge that Utami would be the one to lead Stardom into a new boom period and it was only a matter of time before she claimed the gold.
On the flip side, Mayu has been a proud and respected face of the company for a while now, with her incredible Red Belt reign only further proving that fact. Mayu racked up five successful defenses against the likes of Momo Watanabe and Kagetsu before COVID-19 derailed her momentum throughout the summer months. The Icon was quickly able to make up for lost time, though, as her battles against Syuri and Takumi Iroha were both Match of the Year caliber performances by the champion. Along with two non-title main event battles against Saki Kashima and Takumi Iroha, Mayu has had as good a year as any wrestler could hope for in 2020.
岩谷麻優 vs 林下詩美
👗『#STARDOM SENDAI CINDERELLA 2020』
— スターダム✪STARDOM (@wwr_stardom) November 15, 2020
Following the match, Utami made her challenges to Syuri and Giulia of DDM, both of whom are currently title holders themselves. Quickly thereafter, Utami’s stablemate and former tag team partner entered the ring with a dead stare towards the champion to declare herself the first challenger for the Red Belt. Despite arguments from the Donne Del Mondo pair, Utami set the date for December 20th at Osaka Edion Arena to battle her fellow Queen’s Quest member in her first title defense.
While it is unknown where Mayu will go from here, trouble is noticeably brewing from within STARS, and Tam Nakano seems adamant about surpassing her faction leader sometime very soon.
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. If you wanna see more from Stardom, you can check out their subscription service Stardom World for all your wondrous joshi needs.
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