Doudrop to Face Becky Lynch at Royal Rumble

Doudrop has become a highlight of Raw
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Doudrop’s rapid rise in the World Wrestling Entertainment’s women’s division not only continued but reached an unexpected zenith on January 10’s Monday Night Raw. After demanding a championship opportunity against Raw women’s champion Becky Lynch the week prior, Doudrop found herself in the night’s main event: a triple threat versus former Friday Night SmackDown women’s champion Bianca Belair and Lynch’s Day One challenger, Liv Morgan.

Doudrop Earns Title Match

Since her summer 2021 debut, Doudrop, formerly known as Piper Niven in NXT UK, has shown considerable charisma and versatility during her time on the Raw roster. Her in-ring talents have made her a compelling and consistent midcard player. When Belair’s initial feud with Lynch abruptly fizzled and Morgan was inserted as Lynch’s foe instead, Belair and Doudrop’s midcard feud produced stand out matches between the two, which helped propel both of them into the chase for the “red brand”’s women’s title, the title most emblematic of the early days of WWE’s women’s evolution.

Before the match commenced, Lynch addressed the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania Wells Fargo Center crowd, verbally sizing up each of the women looking to face her at January 29’s Royal Rumble. Of Doudrop, Lynch praised her for having the nerve to take what she wanted, seizing her shot to face Lynch herself. This certainly bore out in the bout’s opening seconds, as Doudrop aggressively targeted her recent sparring partner Belair. The two brawled inside the ring and out, giving Morgan a chance to land a flying splash off the ropes into both of her opponents. Lynch took Morgan’s gutsy maneuver as a compliment to herself, opining that Morgan would do  anything for, “Another taste of the big time.”

Doudrop, however, had some bravura moves of her own to display. Belair momentarily isolated her from the action with a hard kick that left Doudrop recovering, winded, in a corner, and she and Morgan focused on each other. Belair drew on her prodigious strength to nail a back suplex on Morgan, but Doudrop executed a double cross body on both Belair and Morgan. She followed this assault up with a Michinoku driver upon Belair. Morgan held an advancing Doudrop off momentarily with a kick, and attempted to perform a hurricanrana. Her attempt was to no avail, and the former Piper Niven laid her upon a prostrate Belair. Despite being a longshot who muscled her way into the race for the Raw women’s belt, Doudrop was dominating the two high-profile challengers who have both faced Lynch before on PPV.

Morgan rallied and attempted an aggressive offense, mounting Doudrop’s back and delivering a series of stomps…only to find herself swatted like a fly and landing outside the ring, supine and panting. All three women re-entered the ring, and Morgan made her last stand countering attacks from both Doudrop and Belair. A powerbomb from Doudrop ended Morgan’s charge, and when Doudrop was about to cover Morgan for a pinfall win Belair flew in, hitting a 450 splash upon Doudrop. Fired up, Belair immobilized both Doudrop and Morgan and was about to wrap up the encounter with a Kiss of Death on Morgan. The champion, Lynch, however, interfered, attacking Belair.

With Belair preoccupied, Doudrop seized her moment, dropping from the second rope upon an inert Morgan, and covering for the win. The long shot, the dark horse, the breakout tweener with equal charisma and grit, Doudrop had secured a Royal Rumble match against the woman who once embodied all of those same attributes herself, Raw women’s champion Becky Lynch.