Tonight was going to be a question of survival for all the teams involved, everyone was at 2 points, and everything a chance to win the league, a chance to face the champions was on the line. There could be no count out, there could be no disqualification, they had to win.
THE SUGIURA ARMY vs THE ANTI WRESTLERS ALLIANCE
(Takashi Sugiura & Hideki "Shrek" Sekine vs Akitoshi Saito & Masao Inoue)
Shrek demonstrated his enormous strength by carrying Saito across the ring as he and Sugiura took turns in hammering The Anti Wrestlers Alliance down, and dominating pretty much all of the match. They knew very much that the fatal flaw in The Anti Wrestlers Alliance is if Akitoshi Saito is allowed to be in the ring, as he is not the easy target that Inoue can be, and today they worked on keeping Saito out of the ring to get the victory.
WINNER: Shrek via German Suplex on Masao Inoue (9 minutes, 27 seconds)
(Kenoh & Masa Kitamiya vs Kaito Kiyomiya & Shuhei Taniguchi)
Kaito Kiyomiya bounced to the ring shedding white feathers from his coat everywhere as the hood almost fell over his face. Kenoh, scowling at the corner of the ring watched him, and then the two faced off with Kenoh swearing as usual as feathers fell around them. No love lost between them, there was no question of who was going to start this match, as Kiyomiya pushed Taniguchi to their corner and Kitamiya give way to Kenoh. The fight between them was intense, and it went outside the ring and even over to the timekeepers table.
Kenoh and Kiyomiya know each other very very well, so the advantage between them changes quickly.
Masa Kitamiya and Noah's silent monster, Shuhei Taniguchi, faced off. It was like watching two boulders crashing into each other as neither could get the other to move, but after a tough fight it came down to Kitamiya who got the win by almost diving through Taniguchi.
WINNER: Masa Kitamiya with a Spear on Shuhei Taniguchi (14 minutes, 58 seconds)
After the match Kenoh motioned for Kiyomiya to get lost, and Kongoh did the usual pose at the end. They might not have gotten through to the finals, but they had at least beaten Unchains, and for Kenoh a win over Kiyomiya (even not direct) and the fact that they had knocked his team out of the running, meant a lot.
(Go Shiozaki & Katsuhiko Nakajima vs Yoshiki Inamura & Daisuke Sekimoto)
Unusually at the start of the match Noah showed footage of AXIZ coming out for it. This was going to be a very loud match.
In the ring, Katsuhiko Nakajima and Daisuke Sekimoto started, with Nakajima winding up Sekimoto at the first lock up. Usual tactics, stiff kicks to the thigh, leaning on the ropes, and with a Cheshire Cat grin that was enhanced by his gum-shield which made him look like he has fangs. Nakajima finished off his mischief making by sauntering over to Go Shiozaki, and doing what Noah fans call "The Misawa Flash Tag", this comes from when Misawa would unexpectedly tag his partner in as he couldn't be bothered to continue at that moment.
Shiozaki was tagged in, and Sekimoto tagged in Yoshiki Inamura.
Shiozaki was not impressed with Inamura attacking him on rope break, and Inamura was going to pay for that later on, but first Shiozaki was knocked to the mat by Noah's tank.
Like The Sugiura Army in the opening match, AXIZ had figured out the resonance of Muscle Toughness; keep Daisuke Sekimoto away from the ring, leaving the more inexperienced Yoshiki Inamura in it. So AXIZ kept Sekimoto occupied elsewhere, even in brawl outside ring, while Shiozaki seemed to be using an iron claw on Inamura.
Back inside, Shiozaki punished Inamura for earlier, walking slowly up to him while Nakajima held his arms and chopped him. Then Nakajima got in the ring and almost kicked Inamura's lungs through his chest. Although he didn't experience the hated "Endless Love", Inamura did get to experience the new AXIZ new tandem move, a singular co-ordinated kick\chop when the opponent is sitting on the mat. He also got to experience Nakajima at his most sarcastic, when he tried to pin him with the cocky pin. Nakajima smirked at Inamura, doing those small irritating kicks, even beating his chest. However, he didn't like it when Inamura did hit him back, and everything snapped off, the smile, the glint in his eyes, and he kicked him which made an explosive noise on impact. The Cheshire Cat grin came back for the cameras as Nakajima did the "Shutter Chance" on him.
Despite all of this, Inamura was still determined not to give up
Sekimoto was eventually tagged in, and he sent Shiozaki flying off the apron where he landed on the floor with a huge crash into the steel barriers. In the ring Sekimoto lifted Nakajima into the Argentine Backbreaker, and he refused to break it when Shiozaki scraped himself up off the floor, and went to break the hold, kicking him many times. It only ended when Sekimoto (who Nakajima had rightly called "a monster" in his post match interview) THREW Nakajima, an 87kg 5'9 man, into Shiozaki.
Had there been fans in the arena they would have screamed for the long awaited Daisuke Sekimoto vs Go Shiozaki face off. Sekimoto got the machine gun chops and then returned them on Shiozaki. Shiozaki was not impressed by them, so the two of them (screaming at each other) got into a chop war.
The final few moments of the match were nail-biting, would it be the rookie taking a massive step forward with a win over the current reigning champion, or the GHC Heavyweight champion who is a 15 year veteran? Inamura came very close to notching up a huge win, he struck a massive clothesline on Shiozaki, Shiozaki kicked out, and then the straps came down. Inamura blasted Shiozaki with Splash Mountain, and had not Nakajima broken it up then it could have been a very very different night. Inamura fought until the end, kicking out of the Go Flasher, but he could not overcome the Gowan Lariat.
WINNER: Go Shiozaki with Gowan Lariat on Yoshiki Inamura (24 minutes)
Touchingly before he left the ring, Go Shiozaki pointed to the heavens and acknowledged Mitsuharu Misawa. For Shiozaki each Global Tag League win, each chance to get to the finals, is a memorial to him.
MOCHIMARU vs THE SUGIURA ARMY INTERNATIONAL
(Naomichi Marufuji & Masaaki Mochizuki vs Rene Dupree & El Hijo De Dr Wagner Jnr)
Naomichi Marufuji vs Rene Dupree has a been a match that fans have been looking forward to, and Marufuji set the tone for this by grinning at Dupree when he got into the ring, and the two of them started off. Marufuji wound him up, which Dupree was going to remember. El Hijo de Dr Wagner Jnr also had his own method of getting under their skin, especially when he went to chop Marufuji, Marufuji braced, and he then poked him in the eyes instead. Touchingly, Noah made a small adaption for him today, knowing that he does not speak much Japanese or English, they made the time announcements during the match in Spanish.
MochiMaru can be a sadistic tag team, and this was no more true than today when they decided that El Hijo De Dr Wagner Jnr's knee needed a little tune up after slightly injuring it yesterday, and they worked on it. The match was not all one sided, it was hard work for the championship team, especially when The Sugiura Army international did their tandem move which involved lifting Marufuji into the air by El Hijo De Dr Wagner Jnr, followed by a kick by Rene Dupree. This even made Yone say "Oww".
The win was a complete shock, with El Hijo De Wagner Jnr crashing down after a heavy moonsault on Marufuji, and earning them a spot in the finals.
WINNER: El Hijo De Dr Wagner Jnr with the Moonsault on Naomichi Marufuji (17 minutes, 17 seconds)
The finals were now AXIZ vs The Sugiura Army International.