NEO held Etsuko Mita's 20th Anniversary show July 16 at Korakuen Hall with 1,031 fans in attendance. Etsuko Mita is one of the all time greats of joshi puroresu. Of course she's best known for her tag team with Mima Shimoda. This may be one of the longest running tag teams in pro wrestling history and one of the greatest heel teams too. Mita also invented the Death Valley Driver. The big news is that Mima Shimoda did appear at Mita's ceremony. NEO GM Koda said only three people knew Shimoda was coming, Mita, Manami Yoyota & Toshiyo Yamada. Of course anyone reading Shimoda's blog would have known that she was already in Japan for Ultimo Dragon's 20th Anniversary show. She never said she would be there but she didn't have to. There was also an injury and a title change.
The opener had Hiroyo Matsumoto vs Aya Yuki (in a new costume). I believe this was close to Matsumoto's first anniversary in wrestling. Yuki escaped an STF but Matsumoto got the win with a backdrop at 9:02. Next was Ayumi Kurihara & Shuu Shibutani vs Nagisa Nozaki & Aoi Kizuki. Nozaki & Kizuki hit a double missile dropkick on Kurihara. Kurihara won the match over Nozaki with her own missile dropkick at 12:27. But it appears the double dropkick broke her collarbone. Kurihara will be out for a month. Next was a comedy match with Jaguar Yokota and preteen Ice Ribbon wrestlers. Jaguar teamed with Sakai vs Miki Ishii & Mushroom. The finish had Mushroom thrown on top of Ishii and both were pinned at 11:32.
It was time for Etsuko Mita's 20th Anniversary match. It was Etsuko Mita & Manami Toyota vs Kaoru Ito & Ayako Hamada. Mita got to use all her trademark moves like her chops and the Death Valley Driver. But Ayako hit her with a spin kick and the AP Cross and Ito finished Mita with the diving footstamp at 21:26. With her injuries due to a recent car accident, I guess Mita was rusty. Afterwards was the ceremony. Mita's father was there. So was Manami Toyota, Toshiyo Yamada and of course Mima Shimoda (picture from Shimoda's blog). Her appearance did get a big reaction.
Next was an idiotic comedy match with Tanny Mouse, Yuki Miyazaki & Shiryu vs three masked wrestlers from All China Womens Professional Wrestling. Who were they? I dunno but one of them was supposed to be a boar and was wearing a cow mask. Guess who. Finally the main event had Misae Genki & Haruka Matsuo defending the NEO Tag Team Titles against Yoshiko Tamura & Sakura Emi. Genki used her power with an avalanche style Uraken and a G Driver on Tamura. But the tide turned and Emi won over Matsuo with a Majistral cradle at 15:56. Toshiko Tamura & Sakura Emi are your new NEO Tag Team Champions. Afterwards, Tamura suggested that Kaoru Ito & Ayako Hamada would be worthy challengers and that match will happen on July 29. On behalf of all joshi fans, I want to congratulate Etsuko Mita on her 20th anniversary in joshi puroresu.