Thanks to Oliver Roderick for sending in the following:
WWE Wrestlemania Revenge Tour Report – Cardiff, Wales: April 22nd 2013
This was the best show WWE have done in Cardiff for years. Every match flowed and had the crowd involved, and for a change the Smackdown roster wasn’t wanting of star power, even with the absence of World Heavyweight Champion Dolph Ziggler and Team Hell No. There were very few empty seats, and while the majority of the audience was young, they were very vocal throughout.
It was quite odd to see that the merch stands only had the green John Cena shirt as opposed to the newer yellow one, but at £25 a shirt this was the cheapest I have seen the official replica tees. The range included CM Punk (Yellow GTS), Dolph Ziggler (Stealing the show – these sold out very quickly), Wade Barrett, Triple H, Undertaker, Sheamus, Randy Orton, Sin Cara, Mark Henry and Big Show. Also there were signed Randy Orton and Sheamus photos – I regret not picking up one of these. No WWE Magazine or DVDs/Blu-Rays on offer. Interestingly, the programme listed the Hogan/Zeus film ‘No Holds Barred’ as ‘coming soon’ to DVD – it was released in the US last year.
They were promoting The Marine 3, Extreme Rules, WWE 13, Tout and the WWE App before the show and during the intermission.
The show started with a pre-recorded Sheamus promo hyping his six-man tag match with the New Age Outlaws against the Shield. Smart fans gave a huge cheer when the Shield were mentioned, having expected them to be at the Raw taping in London as advertised. Seth Rollins had tweeted that he was in Cardiff earlier in the day.
MATCH 1: The New Age Outlaws and Sheamus def. The Shield (DQ)
Everyone loved the Outlaws – having them out first made up for the fact that the younger members of the audience may not have recognised them. Sheamus got a huge ovation, and the Shield made their entrance through the crowd. The match was very good. Highlights were a Roman Reigns spear and a kick by Gunn to the face of Ambrose. Finish: Gunn hit the Fame-Ass-Er on Rollins, which was followed by a Brogue Kick, but Roman Reigns hit Sheamus with a chair before he could get the pin. The babyfaces won the ensuing brawl.
MATCH 2: Fandango (w/ Summer Rae) def. Ted DiBiase (Pinfall)
Both got great reactions. Summer Rae came out with Fandango – she looks even more stunning in real-life than she does on TV. Some very athletic moves from DiBiase, and both men danced along to the fans’ singing of Fandango’s theme at points. Finish: Fandango reverses Dream Street, and hits his as-yet unnamed version of the Mic-Check.
MATCH 3: Natalya def. Alicia Fox (Submission)
Hornswoggle was the guest ring announcer here. Alicia asks for a time-out half-way through the match, and really overdid the playing to the crowd to get heat. A lot of butt-slapping going on here too. These two have met each other a lot in Cardiff in recent years, but this was the best so far, with some very good athleticism on display. Finish: Sharpshooter.
MATCH 4: Mark Henry def. The Great Khali (Pinfall)
Not a lot to say. Khali better than his recent Cardiff performances. Two referees flanked him at the finish, not sure whether the injury was genuine but he spent a while sitting on the apron before leaving. Finish: Henry counters the double-handed chokeslam with his own World’s Strongest Slam.
MATCH 5: No Disqualification: Alberto Del Rio (w/ Ricardo Rodriguez) def. Jack Swagger (Submission)
Contender for match of the night. Excellent promo from Swagger and Colter beforehand. Colter says that Jack Swagger’s America has stretched far and wide, even as far as right here in… England (cue loud boos). He has a second go: “Hello, Manchester!” More boos. Next time he gets it right, referring to it as “Jack Swagger’s Wales”. Del Rio and Rodriguez (with left foot in a cast) seemed to be enjoying themselves. As a result of a Twitter vote, Colter was banned from ringside. A chant of “We the people” broke out half-way through the match, which Swagger’s mat-wrestling and Del Rio’s submissions were showcased well. A cane was used, and when Del Rio pulled a table from under the ring it got a huge reaction – rarely do we get table action in Cardiff. Lots of chair shots too. Finish: After Swagger gets thrown through the table set up against the turnbuckle, he submits to Del Rio’s cross armbreaker.
MATCH 6: Triple Threat Tag Match: Santino Marella and Alex Riley def. Primo and Epico and The Prime Time Players (Pinfall)
All three teams went over well – there was a “we want Mendes” chant at the start. Santino spent a majority of the match the legal man – did his three-attempts at a nip-up again, plus a breaststroke to ‘swim’ through the air to try to tag Riley. Highlight was when Santino and Riley went for a double shoulder-block on Titus, and only Riley avoided being pole-axed. Finish: Very nice plunge by Epico on PTP, leaving Santino to hit the cobra on Primo, who oversold it to a ridiculous extent.
MATCH 7: Intercontinental Championship Match: Wade Barrett def. Drew McIntyre (Pinfall)
This battle of Britain was another contender for match of the night. Originally set as Barrett vs Justin Gabriel, McIntyre attacked Gabriel as he was coming down the ramp. McIntyre somehow managed to get Englishman Barrett over as a face in Wales when he told of how Barrett grew up in Cardiff and went to college here. Barrett’s mum was in the second row. At one point, a Barrett cry of “Who’s the bloody man?” left some of the kids in shock. Jinder Mahal came down to interfere, but was thrown into the steps by a returning Gabriel. Some great near-falls, including a McIntyre big boot and a Barrett Wasteland. Finish: Barrett won with the Bull Hammer Elbow Smash as McIntyre jumped from the top rope, which was very impressive.
MAIN EVENT MATCH 8: Randy Orton def. Big Show (Pinfall)
A very good main event, with Orton having the majority of the offense. Opening ten minutes was trying to get Show into the ring, which Show was having a load of fun winding him up. I was expecting some involvement from Sheamus, but that didn’t happen. As usual, the DDT over the top rope was very impressive. Orton kicked out of the chokeslam. At one point, Show mopped the sweat off his forehead and launched it over the front few rows, which looked great with the lighting. Finish: RKO.