It’s the first night of Thursday based NXT UK episodes and it certainly started with a bang. It was a women’s wrestling extravaganza as the two main matches were women’s bouts. The first was a Scot vs Scot war as Isla Dawn took on Piper Niven and the second saw the potential new number one contender Tegan Nox get her shot at earning a Women’s Title shot. But, would the fiery Nox be able to take the fight to Kay Lee Ray and walk out the winner. Plus, there were plenty of other talking points scattered throughout the show. Let’s get into it, shall we?

Piper Niven defeated Isla Dawn via Michinoku Driver

This is how you open an episode. You just need to give audiences a competitive hard-hitting bout and they will be happy. At least I was anyway. This is the most competitive matches Isla Dawn has had in a while as she was dominant for most of the match, utilising her technical ability and striking to gain an advantage over her much stronger opponent. She had several near falls almost putting Niven away with a running Meteora and a nasty looking Backdrop Driver. However, Niven was able to endure and destroy Dawn with her finisher once given an opportunity to hit it. This match wasn’t pretty but then again you have two high-class strikers in there so it didn’t need to be. Dawn may have lost yet again but she didn’t look weak at all here. She really did run circles around Niven at several points in the match, making her a more than credible threat. Niven also did an excellent job at showing her head was elsewhere as commentary dwelled on her recent loss at the hands of Rhea Ripley.

Alexander Wolfe defeated Saxon Huxley via Sit-Out Powerbomb

Another shockingly competitive match happened next as the former tag team loser Saxon Huxley looked set to take on Imperium Axe Man Alexander Wolfe. This was a bit slow but it was incredibly well-paced and made Huxley one of the biggest underdogs of the show as he started strong but had the match cut out from under him by some less than savoury kicks. Wolfe systematically picked him apart, going after the legs at first but then going for broke and just targeting everything by the end of the match. Huxley was able to mount one more comeback but was put down with a vicious German and finished with the Powerbomb. Imperium have collectively claimed another victim all while doing it in a professional manner and showing the sacredness of the ring. Considering the squash match potential this match had, it was nice to see Huxley get a proper showing.

Gallus Trashed Jack Starz vs Mike Bird

Mike Bird is a pretty popular wrestler. He had an amazing ICW run with Wild Boar and is known for and was targeted for training Flash Morgan Webster… Gallus’ current enemy. They dragged Starz out during his entrance then beat down Bird after a phony handshake. The tag champs of Morgan and Mark Andrews tried to make the save but were beaten down too by Gallus when Joe Coffey came to boost Gallus’ numbers. It successfully sent a message to the tag champions and it’s only a matter of time before the second-best faction in NXT UK gets their next shot at those tag titles.

Kay Lee Ray defeated Tegan Nox via Dirty Bomb

This is going down in history as one of the best examples of why it’s hard to wrestle against an opponent with two bullseyes on your body. Kay Lee Ray may have been overwhelmed by Nox at the start of the match but once she started targeting the surgically repaired knees of Nox it started to go in her favour. It was an uphill battle from there as Nox was beaten down, targeted and almost choked out multiple times but managed to make it back into the match, even hitting a surprise Destroyer on Ray despite the damage. It was unfortunately not enough and the Shiniest Wizard was hit too close to the ropes to put away Ray. Nox also kept making too many trips to the Top Rope and paid the price for it. Multiple times she was cut down from the top and it took her out of the match. It would ultimately be a kick to the ring post that would take her out of the match as she smashed her knee and Ray was able to drop her with the Dirty Bomb ending the match.

Tegan Nox gave this match her all and may have just reached a new level of fan support. She fought valiantly, gave it her all and ended up losing for being too ambitious. She was given the match for stealing the spotlight from Kay Lee Ray but ended up doing the same thing in the match. In losing, she has given us all the want to see more from the pair. She may or may not get another shot at Ray in the near future. If she does, I’ll be very happy to see it.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i2ssd8XIiq0]

So, there you have it, the newest episode of NXT UK broken down for your reading pleasure. Whilst it was only a four-segment show, each bit was exceptionally well done. This was a fun show from start to finish with three strong matches and a great Gallus beatdown. The brand seems to be stalling a bit at the moment but luckily, we are getting some high work rate matches to keep things going in between story droughts. Next week will see Jazzy Gabert take on Piper Niven so there is that to look forward too. Plus, we could see The Grizzled Young Veterans take on Ashton Smith and whoever his friends may be. So even when the brand seems to be slowing for a bit, there are still things to be intrigued by.

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