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#MustWatchMonday (6/6/16): Will Ospreay vs. Zack Sabre Jr.

A match that is currently one of the talks of the town in wrestling fandom is the bout between Ricochet and Will Ospreay from NJPW's Best of the Super Juniors tournament. In case you haven't seen it, the match garnered so much buzz that it caught mainstream attention, and so now the NJPW Youtube channel has uploaded the match in full for free.



For those who exclusively follow WWE, this match was most likely their first introduction to the "Aerial Assassin" Will Ospreay. What you may not know however is that 2016 has pretty much been the year of Ospreay, and that he is currently one of the most exciting wrestlers to watch today. Describing him as a wrestling genius would not be exaggerating, as this man is only 22 years old.

If you've been following this website (and I certainly hope you've been following this column), Will Ospreay has already been covered twice, the first being a grudge match against one of his most bitter rivals Marty Scurll, and the other being an exciting spotfest against Shane Strickland. With the buzz surrounding his match against Ricochet however, I wanted to take this time to share this excellent match he had against Zack Sabre Jr. at EVOLVE 58 in Dallas during WrestleMania weekend.

Zack Sabre Jr. is a name that even WWE-only followers should have at least heard of by now, given that he'll be entering the upcoming Cruiserweight Classic on the WWE Network. For more on Zack Sabre Jr. you can refer to our introduction to him here.

In a nutshell though, with regards to his technical ability, Zack Sabre Jr. might very well be the second coming of Daniel Bryan. His stint in the Cruiserweight Classic pretty much guarantees that he'll be signing with the WWE in a few months' time.

But let's focus on Ospreay vs. ZSJ.

In this match, two of the most popular British wrestlers today lock up on American soil. This match was a part of ZSJ's "Best in the World Challenge Series," and was entitled "The Flyer." It's quite a contrast of styles with the high flyer in Will Ospreay taking on the technical wizard that is Zack Sabre Jr.

The match started off with high-paced grappling, as Ospreay showed he could keep up with ZSJ, even eventually gaining the advantage and hitting Sabre with strikes and kicks. Sabre eventually took back control, however, and put Ospreay through a series of holds and suplexes, working his limbs to keep Ospreay down. From there, the two got into their respective styles, with ZSJ putting on submissions and more suplexes, and Ospreay going into his element of 630 splashes (though he missed his), handsprings, and even hitting a great looking Sasuke special. Eventually, however, Ospreay got caught in one submission too many, and was forced to tap out.

Words can only go so far to explain or present a match of this calibre. The counters, the reversals, the way the crowd reacted to the moves these two men brought out can only truly be appreciated if you watch the match. At only 16 minutes long, I'm sure anyone can find the time to give this a watch.



What did you think of the ZSJ vs. Will Ospreay? Are you excited to see more of Will Ospreay? Leave a comment below!


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Brandon Sy is a PhD student in Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics currently based in Sydney. Since he wasn't allowed to watch wrestling as a kid, he's been overcompensating ever since. Despite being a huge fan of Japanese wrestling, he still holds a soft spot in his heart for WWE's Kane. He's good for recommending matches from pretty much anywhere, whether it be Japan, Europe, the US or Mexico. He'd be ecstatic if you watched Dragon Gate though.

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