The 2020 World Tag League and Best of the Super Jr. 27 will run in tandem with the first matches of both tournaments taking place altogether from 15th November and run through to the finals on 11th December.
Yoshinobu Kanemaru was originally set to compete, but due to injury has had to pull out and will be replaced by Young Lion, Yuya Uemura.
What is the Best of the Super Juniors?
The Best of the Super Juniors is a yearly round-robin tournament and was created in 1988, becoming an annual event in 1991. The tournament normally invites competitors from promotions around the world to compete for the prize of being the best Junior Heavyweight in the world.
Originally known as Top of the Super Juniors, the winner of the tournament earns a right to challenge for the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Championship, normally at Dominion but this year they will challenge for the title at Wrestle Kingdom, unless the current holder of the title wins, meaning they get to pick their opponent.
Jushin Thunder Liger and Koji Kanemoto have won the tournament three times while Tiger Mask IV is the only person to have won it in back to back years, in 2004 and 2005. Kanemoto holds the record for most appearances in a final, with eight between 1997 and 2009. Liger has participated in the most tournaments with 1995 and 2000 being his only years not competing. He would make his last appearance in the tournament in 2017 and would retire on 5th January 2020.
When can you see Best of the Super Jr.27
- Day One: Sunday 15th November 2020 – Aichi Prefectural Gymnasium, Aichi – 6pm JST, 9am GMT, 1am PST, 4am EST.
- Day Two: Wednesday 18th November 2020 – Korakuen Hall, Tokyo – 6.30pm JST, 9.30am GMT, 1.30am PST, 4.30am EST.
- Day Three: Friday 20th November 2020 – Korakuen Hall, Tokyo – 6.30pm JST, 9.30am GMT, 1.30am PST, 4.30am EST.
- Day Four: Monday 23rd November 2020 – G Messe Gunma, Gunma – 6pm JST, 9am GMT, 1am PST, 4am EST.
- Day Five: Wednesday 25th November 2020 – Toki Messe, Niigata – 6.30pm JST, 9.30am GMT, 1.30am PST, 4.30am EST.
- Day Six: Sunday 29th November 2020 – Korakuen Hall, Tokyo – 6.30pm JST, 9.30am GMT, 1.30am PST, 4.30am EST.
- Day Seven: Wednesday 2nd December 2020 – Osaka Municipal Central Gymnasium, Osaka – 6.30pm JST, 9.30am GMT, 1.30am PST, 4.30am EST.
- Day Eight: Saturday 5th December 2020 – Sun Arena Sendai, Kagoshima – 6.30pm JST, 9.30am GMT, 1.30am PST, 4.30am EST.
- Day Nine: World Tag League & the Best of the Super Jr.27 Final – Friday 11th December 2020 – Nippon Budokan, Tokyo – 6pm JST, 9am GMT, 1am PST, 4am EST.
Who’s Who at this year’s Best of the Jrs.27
Robbie Eagles was born 13th February 1990 and is a member of the CHAOS faction, being previously a part of Bullet Club. He has worked for Professional Wrestling Alliance/Pro Wrestling Australia, Melbourne City Wrestling, and World Series Wrestling in Australia, his home country. Eagles has also worked in Chikara, Progress and Pro Wrestling Guerrilla (PWG). He has held championships in Blue Mountains Pro Wrestling, Melbourn City Wrestling, Newcastle Pro Wrestling, and World Series Wrestling. In the PWA Eagles is a three-time PWA Heavyweight Championship, a one-time PWA Tag Team Championship, an A1GP Champion, and the winner of the King Of The New School 2010 Tag Team Tournament with Mat Diamond.
SHO was born 27th August 1989 and is a member of the CHAOS faction and is a part of the tag team Roppongi 3K with YOH and Rocky Romero. While at high school SHO would become involved in Greco-Roman wrestling and would go on to be the vice captain of his wrestling team at university, competing in the 7th All-Japan University Championship for Greco-Roman wrestling, where he came in third overall. As well as working for New Japan Pro-Wrestling, SHO has competed in Ring of Honor (ROH) and Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL). While in CMLL he would go by the name Raijin, Japanese God of thunder, and teamed up with Okumura, Kamaitachi, and Fujin as part of the La Ola Amarilla faction. SHO has been a four-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion with YOH and the team has also won the Super Jr. Tag Tournament for three consecutive years in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Taiji Ishimori was born 20th February 1983 and is a member of the Bullet Club faction and is the current IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion in his second reign. While in New Japan Pro-Wrestling he has also held the IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship, the NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Championship and won the U-30 One Night Tag Tournament in 2004 teaming with Hiroshi Tanahashi.
Ishimori is best known for the twelve years he spent in Pro Wrestling Noah, becoming one of its most decorated junior heavyweights in the promotion’s history. While in NOAH he would hold the GHC Junior Heavyweight Championship three times, at one point holding the title for 405 days, making this the longest single reign in the titles history. While there he would also hold the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship six times, and has won the Nippon TV/NTV G+ Cup Jr. Heavyweight Tag League four times, once back to back 2007 and 2008 and then again in 2012 and 2016.
He has also worked with AJPW, IMPACT wrestling where he held the X Division Championship, Lucha Libre AAA Worldwide where he has been the AAA World Tag Team Champion and won the Best Wrestler of the Lucha Libre World Cup award and Toryumon X.
Hiromu Takahashi was born 4th December 1989 and is a member of Los Ingobernables de Japon faction and has worked for New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW), Ring of Honor (ROH), and Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL).
While in CMLL and his first run in ROH he would work under the name Kamaitachi winning the CMLL World Lightweight Championship in January 2016. He would return to NJPW in November 2016 and join Los Ingobernables de Japon being awarded the Wrestling Observer Newsletter award for Best Gimmick in 2017, winning the Best of the Super Juniors in 2018 and becoming a three-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion.
Ryusuke Taguchi was born 15th April 1979 is the founder of Taguchi Japan, a faction with an open door policy, and has been a main fixture of the Junior Heavyweight division since his debut on 22nd November 2002. Taguchi has earned the nickname “Funky Weapon” due to his use of the Hip Attack, his flamboyant attire and encouraging his tag team partners to dance with him when victorious.
Taguchi is a two-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion, a six-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion, a three-time NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Champion, has won the Best of the Super Juniors in 2012, has won the Young Lion Toukon Tournament and Young Lion Cup both in 2004. Taguchi and his Apollo 55 team mate Prince Devitt where awarded the Best Bout Award in 2010 by Tokyo Sport for their match against the Golden Lovers, Kenny Omega and Kota Ibushi.
He has worked for CMLL where he has held their World Welterweight Championship, for Toryumon Mexico where he won the Yamaha Cup and for Kaientai Dojo where he was awarded the Best Tag Team Match of 2010.
BUSHI was born 5th April 1983, is a member of Los Ingobernables de Japon faction, and has worked for New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW), Ring of Honor (ROH), International Wrestling Revolution Group (IWRG), All Japan Pro Wrestling (AJPW), and Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL).
BUSHI made this New Japan debut in April 2012 and is a four-time NEVER Openweight 6-Man Tag Team Champion, a one-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Champion and a one-time IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion with Shingo Takagi.
While in All Japan Pro Wrestling he would win their Junior Tag League in 2010 and the U-30 Tag Team Tournament with KUSHIDA in 2008. He has also held the CMLL World Welterweight Championship, IWRG Intercontinental Lightweight Championship twice and the Wrestling Observer Newsletter gave him the award for Best Gimmick in 2017.
El Desperado was born 29th December 1983, is a member of Suzuki-Gun, and is the current IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Champion alongside Yoshinobu Kanemaru in his second reign. Despy has worked for New Japan Pro-Wrestling (NJPW), Pro Wrestling Noah (NOAH), and Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL).
Along with his IWGP Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship El Desperado has held the CMLL Arena Coliseo Tag Team Championship with Okumura and the GHC Junior Heavyweight Tag Team Championship with Taka Michinoku in NOAH.
Yuya Uemura was born 18th November 1994 and is currently a Young Lion being trained at the New Japan Dojo.
He wrestled collegiately in high school and in university, winning the 71kg Greco-Roman championship of West Japan Collegiate Wrestling League in October 2016. He made his New Japan in-ring debut along with Yota Tsuji in April 2018. He would team with Tiger Mask IV in the Super Junior Tag Tournament in October 2019 and would be eliminated in the first round of the New Japan Cup 2020 by Yoshinobu Kanemaru.
DOUKI was born 24th February 1991, is a member of Suzuki-Gun and is currently working for New Japan Pro-Wrestling and has previously appeared for Michinoku Pro Wrestling (MPW), International Wrestling Revolution Group (IWRG), International Wrestling League (IWL), and Kaientai Dojo (K-Dojo) where he was a member of the Magatsuki faction.
He moved to Naucalpan, Mexico in 2008 at 17 years old to become a professional wrestler and was trained by compatriot Ultimo Dragon and Jorge Rivera. DOUKI debuted in NJPW in 2019 and would go on to compete in the 2019 Best of the Super Juniors after fellow Suzuki-Gun member El Desperado had to drop out of the tournament due to a broken jaw.
Master Wato was born 13th March 1997 and has just returned to New Japan Pro-Wrestling after being on excursion in Mexico at Consejo Mundial de Lucha Libre (CMLL), where he held the World Lightweight Championship.
As a Young Lion he would also compete in the 2017 Super Junior Tag Tournament teaming with KUSHIDA and would finish second overall in the 2017 Young Lion Cup.
Find World Tag League & the Best of the Super Jr.27 over at New Japan World from 15th November 2020.