The wrestlers involved in the 2012 Champion Carnival have been announced.
This years Champion Carnival Tournament will be taking place from April 21st to May 7th, with the winner earning the right to face off against the Jun Akiyama Triple Crown Championship.
1. Suwama [Team Destruction]
2. Taiyo Kea
3. Takao Omori [GET WILD]
4. KENSO [Team Bichitto]
5. Masayuki Kono [STACK OF ARMS]
6. Seiya Sanada
7. Manabu Soya [GET WILD] – Carnival Debut
8. Ryota Hama [SMOP]
9. Yuji Nagata [NJPW] (2011 CC Winner)
10. Akebono [SMOP]
11. Yutaka Yoshie [free]
12. Daisuke Sekimoto [BJW] – Carnival Debut
13. Yuji Okabayashi [BJW] – Carnival Debut
14. Takumi Soya or Yasufumi Nakanoueno (Decision match on 4/14)
Notes: Manabu Soya finally gets into the tournament after years of watching Seiya Sanada competing in Carnival. Last year was a strong showing for Sanada but could Manabu make this a even bigger debut?
~ Both up and coming rookies, Nakanoueno & Takumi, will be offered a chance to compete in the tournament following a special singles match on scheduled event on April 14th. Neither have yet to be in the tournament, but this will be a big spot for both of them. Takumi Soya (who debuted in January of 2011) has already begun to break out sooner than his Sempai Nakanoueno. Nakanoueno, who debuted in January of 2010, has struggled to gain an initial footing in the promotion (whether that be intentional or not) a spot in the Champion Carnival could give him a much needed boost.
~ They newly appointed “Seven Samurai” of All Japan, consisting of Suwama, Takao Omori, Manabu Soya, KENSO, Taiyo Kea, Akebono & Ryota Hama, came forward following Akiyama’s successful defense against Mutoh and are aiming to be one of the ones to bring the belt back home to AJP.
BUSHI is set to return to the All Japan ring for Junior Tag League as part of the 6th and final team. BUSHI has been out of action since December 4th when he started suffering the effects of Vertigo, in which later he was diagnosed with Abnormal Semi-circular Canals. Because of the illness he was forced to do nothing but rest and try his best at rehabilitation. BUSHI has not announced who his partner will be at this time, but he said he would do his best to find a suitable teammate.
1. “Team 246” Kaz Hayashi & Shuji Kondo
2. “Junior Stars” Koji Kanemoto [NJPW] & Minoru Tanaka
3. KAI & Gillette
4. Hiroshi Yamato & Hikaru Sato [Pancrase MISSON]
5. Kenny Omega & Micheal Nakazawa [DDT]
6. BUSHI & (to be announced)
For more info on the tournament, including scheduled matches, be sure to check out the previous post.
On a side note, Team246 (Shuji Kondo & Kaz Hayashi) have their eyes set on winning the tournament and going on to compete for the All Asia Tag Belts, which are currently held by BJW’s Sekimoto & Okabayashi.
40th Anniversary Year 2012 GROWIN’UP ~ Junior Heavyweight Tag League ~ Final, 4/14/2012 [Sat] 18:00 @ Differ Ariake in Tokyo
(-) Champion Carnival Prelude Special 8 Man Tag Match:
~ Participants: Suwama, Takao Omori, Masayuki Kono, Seiya Sanada, Manabu Soya, Ryota Hama, Akebono & Yutaka Yoshie
Teams to be determined by lottery on the day of event.
(-) Single Match: KENSO vs. Masao Inoue [free]
(-) Champion Carnvial Contention Match: Yasufumi Nakanoueno vs. Takumi Soya
(-) Junior Tag League Match: Kaz Hayashi & Shuji Kondo vs. Koji Kanemoto & Minoru Tanaka
(-) Junior Tag League Match: KAI & Gillette vs. Kenny Omega & Micheal Nakazawa
(-) Junior Tag League Match: Hiroshi Yamato & Hikaru Sato vs. BUSHI & X
(-) Junior Tag League Final Match:
The newly crowned World Tag Team Champions GET WILD, have already started talking about what they would like to do next. As in obtaining more gold and competing against the other top tag teams in Japan. Omori specifically dropped Akiyama’s name as he is also the reigning the GHC Heavy Tag Team Champion with Akitoshi Saito, and even Satoshi Kojima who is the IWGP Heavy Tag Team Champion with Hiroyoshi Tenzan.