8/31 Powell’s NXT UK Takeover: Cardiff live review – Walter vs. Tyler Bate for the WWE UK Championship, Toni Storm vs. Kay Lee Ray for the NXT UK Women’s Championship, Zack Gibson and James Drake vs. Mark Andrews and Flash Morgan Webster vs. Mark Coffey and Wolfgang for the NXT UK Tag Titles

By Jason Powell, ProWrestling.net Editor (@prowrestlingnet)

NXT UK Takeover: Cardiff
Aired live August 31, 2019 on WWE Network
Cardiff, Wales at Motorpoint Arena

A video package opened the event… The broadcast team of Vic Joseph and Nigel McGuinness checked in and noted that the venue was sold out…

1. Noam Dar vs. Travis Banks. Banks went for a kick from the ropes, but Dar caught his leg on the way down and applied a kneebar. Dar went on the offensive and picked up a near fall. Banks rallied and hit a top rope double stomp for a good near fall. Dar came back and blasted Banks with a knee to the head and pinned him..

Powell’s POV: A strong opening match. I’m going light on the coverage at the moment because I’m doing double duty while covering this event and the final minutes of the CM Punk Q&A session from Starrcast. This show will have my undivided attention shortly.

Kay Lee Ray was shown warming up backstage…

Radzi interviewed Cesaro backstage. Cesaro said he was there for a fight. Ilja Dragunov walked into the picture and looked him up and down…

2. Cesaro vs. Ilja Dragunov. Dragunov was giving plenty of offense and picked up some strong near falls. Cesaro came back by pressing Dragunov above his head and then dropped him onto his knee for a two count. Cesaro followed up with an diving uppercut for another near fall. Both men got to their feet and Dragunov ducked an uppercut. Dragunov performed a Death Valley Driver into the corner. The crowd chanted “this is awesome.” Dragunov went up top and performed a senton for another near fall. Cesaro came back with a popup uppercut and the Neutralizer for the win.

Cesaro defeated Ilja Dragunov.

After the match, Cesaro came back to the ring and squatted in the corner while waiting for Dragunov to stand up. Once Dragunov got to his feet, Cesaro teased hitting him with a European uppercut, then shook his hand, hugged him, and spoke to him before leaving the ring…

Powell’s POV: Cesaro didn’t fly overseas for a feel good squash win. This was a good, competitive match with Dragunov looking strong in defeat. Go out of your way to watch this match if you’re not watching the full show.

After some advertising, Adrian Street and Miss Linda were shown in the crowd while the broadcast team hyped his documentary as being available on WWE Network…

Powell’s POV: I’m really looking forward to checking out the documentary when time permits. I hope that one doesn’t get lost in the shuffle for fans on such a busy holiday weekend.

A video package set up the tag title match…

3. Zack Gibson and James Drake vs. Mark Andrews and Flash Morgan Webster vs. Mark Coffey and Wolfgang in a Triple Threat match for the NXT UK Tag Titles. The hometown babyface team of Andrews and Webster was really over against the two heel teams. There was a great spot where Morgan threw a knee to the head of Wolfgang, then Andrews performed a reverse huracanrana. A short time later, Andrews performed a shooting star press from the top rope onto the heels at ringside.

Andrews rolled Gibson into the ring, where Gibson clotheslined him. Andrews surprised Gibson with a Stundog Millionaire and then Webster hit a top rope swanton onto the back of Gibson. Andrews covered Gibson for a really good near fall. Drake caught Andrews with a running dropkick in the corner. Gibson slammed Andrews with Helter Skelter, then Drake performed a top rope 450 splash for another excellent near fall.

The Gallus duo of Coffey and Wolfgang recovered at ringside and then quickly cleared everyone from the ring. Coffey ran the ropes and then Wolfgang launched him over the top rope onto their four opponents. Coffey threw Andrews into the ring. Wolfgang held up Andrews, Coffey kicked him, and then Wolfgang slammed Andrews and covered him, but Webster broke up the pin.

Drake and Gibson performed a Doomsday Device onto Wolfgang at ringside. Andrews and Webster stood in the ring and called for the tag champions. Drake tagged Coffey, then he and Gibson entered the ring and squared off with he hometown favorites. They teams fought and Andrews hit a double Stundog Millionaire on the champions, then Webster hit a top rope 450 on Drake.

Webster had the pin, but Gibson pulled the referee out of the ring. A short time later, Gibson and Drake teamed up for their Ticket To Mayhem finisher on Webster. Drake took out the Gallus duo with a suicide dive while Gibson went for the pin, but Andrews performed a shooting star press onto the back of Gibson, then pulled his tag partner on top of him for the win.

Mark Andrews & Flash Morgan Webster defeated Zack Gibson & James Drake and Mark Coffey & Wolfgang in a Triple Threat match to win the NXT UK Tag Titles.

Andrews and Webster celebrated in the crowd afterward…

Powell’s POV: Another terrific match with a great crowd pleasing finish with the hometown duo winning the tag titles. I’m mildly surprised that they didn’t have Andrews and Webster beat one of the Gallus duo to give Gibson and Drake something to squawk about, but they went all in by having the fan favorites beat the champions to take their titles.

After some advertising, Toni Storm was shown backstage… A video package set up the Last Man Standing match…

4. Dave Mastiff vs. Joe Coffey in a Last Man Standing match. Mastiff came out first and then charged at Coffey once he was introduced and fought with him at ringside. They fought their way into the ring and the match officially started. Mastiff whipped Coffey into the corner and the top turnbuckle broke. Mastiff used the turnbuckle as a weapon. Coffey came back and pulled out a bag of weapons and also set up a table against the barricade. Coffey used a pool cue as a weapon, then Mastiff came back with a cricket bat.

Coffey speared Mastiff through a table that was set up at ringside. Both men got back to their feet. Mastiff performed a German suplex at ringside. Mastiff picked up a chain and whipped Coffey with it. Mastiff pulled out a table and leaned it against the barricade. Mastiff and Coffey had a tug-o-war of the chain until Mastiff gave a thumbs up, released the chain, and let Coffey fall backward. Mastiff performed a cannonball onto Coffey that sent him crashing through the table. The wrestlers fought into the crowd where Mastiff slammed a chair over the back of Coffey multiple times.

Both men ended up with chairs in the aisle in the crowd and then got a running start and slammed into one another. Both men beat the count. Mastiff tossed Coffey by the broadcast table, then tore apart the table and threw Coffey onto it. Mastiff followed him up and performed a senton bomb on the table, which did not break. Both men got to their feet and ended fighting on the pre-show set that was located above the broadcast table. Mastiff headbutted Coffey and then both men fell from the platform through the broadcast table below. Both men appeared to get to their feet at nine, but Coffey kicked a production case that Mastiff was leaning on. When the production case rolled, Mastiff fell down and the referee counted him down…

Joe Coffey defeated Dave Mastiff in a Last Man Standing match.

Powell’s POV: A wild brawl that gave the show a good change of pace. In fairness, Mastiff was behind the production crate, so it was hard to get a feel for whether he was back on his feet or not. He didn’t protest afterward, but it’s possible that his character will complain about the referee’s decision to set up the need for a rematch.

Imperium members Alexander Wolfe, Fabian Aichner, and Marcel Barthel stood by as Walter prepared for the main event…

Tegan Nox was shown in the crowd… A video package set up the NXT UK Women’s Championship match…

5. Toni Storm vs. Kay Lee Ray for the NXT UK Women’s Championship. Ring announcer Andy Shepherd delivered in-ring introductions for the title match. Joseph said it looked like Storm was getting emotional due to her history with Ray, who went to ringside and stalled. Storm eventually dove at her and roughed her up at ringside and ran Ray into the barricade. Storm brought Ray back to the ring. Ray slapped her across the face which led to Storm throwing a series of clubbing blows in response. McGuinness said it was the Toni Storm of old.

McGuinness said Storm should be leery of Ray playing a game of rope a dope with her by weathering the early storm. Ray eventually came back. Storm continued to show emotion as she battled back. Storm caught Ray with a slow kick and then clotheslined her from behind. Storm performed a German suplex and an awkward running clothesline. Storm set up for Storm Zero, but Ray avoided it. Storm came right back with a sunset driver for a two count. Ray caught Storm in an inside cradle for a two count. Storm came right back and hit Storm Zero and only got a two count. Ray fought right back with a near fall of her own.

Storm and Ray fought on the ropes. Storm eventually flipped off and performed a German suplex after pulling Ray from the middle rope. Storm covered Ray for a two count. A short time later, Ray hit Storm with a knee that left her at ringside, then Ray went up top and flipped onto her on the floor. Ray held her back as she reentered the ring. Ray hooked Storm on her back and then dropped her face first on the ropes, then hooked her back in the same position and hit her Gory Bomb finisher and scored the clean pin…

Kay Lee Ray defeated Toni Storm to win the NXT UK Women’s Championship.

Powell’s POV: A good effort, but it was a little odd at times to see one wrestler hit a big move and then it felt like both would get up and the other wrestler who took the big move would come right back with a big move of her own as if nothing happened. Here’s hoping that Storm dropping the title means she’s coming to either the main roster or NXT in the United States. She’s a hell of a talent and while I enjoy NXT UK, the main roster is a bigger priority and so is the regular NXT brand now that they weekly show is moving to USA Network to counter AEW’s weekly series on TNT.

After some advertising, two-thirds of the band Junior were shown in the crowd. The broadcast team noted that the third member Mark Andrews won the NXT UK Tag Titles earlier in the night…

A video package set up the WWE UK Championship match…

6. Walter vs. Tyler Bate for the WWE UK Championship. Walter was on the offensive early. The crowd sang and was behind Bate, who rallied with a bodyslam fr a big pop. Bate sent Walter to ringside with a shoulder block. Bate went for a suicide dive, but Walter caught him and powerbombed him onto the ring apron. Walter followed up with a powerbomb onto the ring post. A trainer checked on Bate, who eventually rolled back inside the ring to continue the match.

Bate showed some signs of life and went to hoist up Walter on his shoulders, but he collapsed under the weight. Walter controlled the next few minutes of offense. The crowd continued to sing for Bate. Eventually, Bate performed an exploder suplex from the apron that sent both men crashing to ringside. Back inside the ring, Bate took offensive control until he went for a move from the middle rope and Walter chopped his back in mid-air. Walter applied a Boston Crab, then turned it into a Liontamer style hold. Walter released the hold and applied a chinlock. Walter released the hold and threw elbows, then wrenched on the neck of Bate, who reached the ropes to break the hold. Walter showed some frustration.

The crowd sang another song as Bate blocked three suplex attempts. Bate tried to reverse it twice, but Walter slipped away and chopped him. Walter went for a suplex, but Bate hit him with a knee to the head. Bate tried for a suplex, but couldn’t get Walter up. Bate tried again and pulled off the suplex for a big pop from the crowd.

Powell’s POV: I love seeing a move as basic as a vertical suplex being done in a way where it comes off like a major move. Both guys did a great job with that sequence.

Bate fired up and hit some running clotheslines. Walter caught him with a strike, but kept at him and performed an exploder suplex. Bate kipped up and held his back, then performed a standing shooting star press for a near fall. Walter stuffed a tiger driver attempt. Bate went for a backslide and Walter flipped over and landed on his feet, then Bate hooked his arms, but Walter backdropped him. Walter caught Bate with a dropkick to the back and set up for a powerbomb, but Bate slipped into a sunset driver for a nice near fall.

Bate went to the top rope, but Walter rolled to the apron. Walter got up and went after Bate on the ropes. Bate set up for a suplex to the outside, but Walter blocked it and climbed down. Walter threw a chop that knocked Bate off the ropes and into the ring. Walter went up top. Bate stood up and headbutted Walter on the ropes. Walter ended up seated on the top rope. Bate went to the middle rope and did the finger snap. Bate followed up with a superplex and covered Walter for a two count.

Walter knocked Bate down with a big chop. Bate shook his head no and got to his feet, then took two more chips and ducked a third. Bate held up his arm and Walter hit him with the third chop. Bate caught Walter with a strike, but Walter sold it like he was out and fell onto Bate, who struggled to get out from under him. Once both men were bak on their feet, Walter caught Bate going for a move and then suplexed him for a near fall. Walter set up for a powerbomb, but Bate kicked his head. Bate powered up Walter on his shoulders and performed an airplane spin. Walter grabbed the top rope and ended up on the middle rope. Bate kicked Walter’s leg. Bate put Walter on his shoulders in torture rack position and brought him to the middle of the ring where he performed a Burning Hammer. Bate reached over and tried to cover Walter, who rolled to ringside while the fans chanted “fight forever.”

Bate dove at Walter through the ropes and didn’t really connect with the DDT or bulldog he was going for. Bate returned to the ring and then ran and dove over the top rope onto Walter. Bate continued to sell his back before and after each move and when he rolled Walter back inside the ring. Bate powered up Walter for a German suplex into a bridge for another near fall. Bate set up for a tiger driver, but Walter stuffed it and fell onto Bate, who powered up and then hit the Tiger Driver 97 for a near fall. Bate hit a corkscrew moonsault for another near fall.

Bate threw punches at Walter in the corner. The referee pulled Bate back, then Walter exploded with a series of strikes and put Bate in a rear naked choke. Bate powered up to his feet and then fell backward to drive Walter into the mat and to break the hold. Suddenly, Walter sat up and reapplied the hold. Bate reached the ropes with his feet and Walter shoved him over the top. Bate landed on the apron. Walter clubbed Bate and applied a sleeper, then Bate pulled him onto the apron with him. Walter blasted Bate with a chop to the back and then performed a sleeper suplex onto the apron. Walter threw Bate inside the ring and then went to the tope rope and performed a splash, but Bate kicked out of the move that Walter used to beat Pete Dunne to win the WWE UK Championship.

Walter suplexed Bate and covered him for another two count. Walter hit Bate a couple times and then powerbombed him, but Bate kicked out at one. Walter looked shocked and the crowd came to life. Bate tried to use Walter to pull himself up. Walter hit him and then performed a running clothesline and pinned him clean…

Walter defeated Tyler Bate to retain the WWE UK Championship.

The broadcast team narrated highlights of the match. Walter went to the entrance area where Imperium members Alexander Wolfe, Fabian Aichner, and Marcel Barthel were waiting. The foursome headed backstage while Joseph questioned how or what would be able to get past Walter.

Bate was joined in the ring by Trent Seven and Pete Dunne. The fans chanted “British Strong Style” for the trio. Seven and Dunne helped Bate to his feet and the fans stood and applauded. Bate, Dunne, and Seven did their hand signal and then hugged in the middle of the ring to close the show…

Powell’s POV: A fantastic match. This one looked great on paper and it still blew away my high expectations. The match went over 40 minutes and that really surprised me sine Takeovers are usually around 2.5 hours. The wrestlers filled the time extremely well. I’ve heard good things about the Kazuchika Okada vs. Minoru Suzuki match from the NJPW Royal Quest event and we still have the full AEW All Out event to go, but Walter vs. Bate will definitely be in the conversation for best match of this loaded Saturday. Overall, this was a top notch show that peaked with one hell of a main event. Dot Net staffer Haydn Gleed and Darren Gutteridge attended this event in person and will be recording an audio review for Dot Net Members (either later today or tomorrow). Thanks for watching along with me. Stop back tonight for my live review of AEW All Out beginning with the one hour pre-show at 6CT/7ET.

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