As reported on February 28, 2019, New Japan Pro-Wrestling released a statement that David Finlay will be missing New Japan Cup due to an injury on his left shoulder. News of Finlay unable to perform for the New Japan audience was announced by NJPW1972.com
The King of Sports released a statement on March 4, 2019 that Ryusuke Taguchi would be replacing him in the tournament.
“David Finlay, whose left shoulder was injured in his championship match during Honor Rising on 23rd February, has pulled out of the New Japan Cup since his return from injury is as yet undecided. Instead, Ryusuke Taguchi will be taking David Finlay’s place in the tournament. With this change, Ryusuke Taguchi will be competing in the first round of the New Japan Cup on 10th March in Hyogo prefecture, where he will face Hiroyoshi Tenzan.”
The New Japan fandom are up in arms with great excitement for Taguchi. The fans are showing great support and enthusiasm about the slight change in the card. On social media the fans are expressing to the King of Sports that this change is truly inspirational. They hope that Taguchi can deliver to the end and become the next IWGP Heavyweight Champion.
The former NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Champion, David Finlay’s recovery period is still undetermined on a return time frame for him.
The 2019 New Japan Cup will take place between March 8 and 24. Unlike the previous year, the tournament will feature 32 wrestlers instead of 16 and marks the New Japan Cup debut of 7 wrestlers. The bracket of first-round matches of New Japan Cup, that will take place from March 8 to March 11, is to find out here.
Pics courtesy of New Japan Pro-Wrestling