This Sunday, PROGRESS Wrestling returns to its home at the Electric Ballroom in Camden for the first time since Chapter 95 at Alexandra Palace.
Following on from a successful show in Manchester two weeks ago, PROGRESS have stacked this weekend’s card with some big matches headlined by a mix of established and rising stars from the British independent scene. With the PROTEUS and Women’s World Championships both on the line, let’s take a closer look at what Chapter 97 has in store for us.
Mark Andrews vs. Connor Mills
After aligning with Eddie Dennis and assisting him in winning the PROGRESS World Championship, Mark Andrews’ new demeanour goes against everything we previously knew about him. Whilst Connor Mills is trying to improve his win-loss record, it will be interesting to see if Andrews brings more aggression to the ring.
Like a lot of matches on this card, this contest has multiple outside variables. Naturally, Andrews has Eddie Dennis on his side but Mills’ biggest outside threat could be in the form of Do Not Resuscitate after agreeing to have Destination Everywhere’s back in their handicapped tag team match against DNR.
Both Mills and Andrews have had one foot in and one foot out of PROGRESS for the best part of a year now, but this character development could be exactly what both men need right now. On top of that, this match could be a show-stealer in the ring as both Mills and Andrews are more than capable of throwing up a great match.
The NIC vs. Do Not Resuscitate
In a similar arch, The NIC’s Charlie Carter and Oisin Delaney face Do Not Resuscitate, presumably Chuck Mambo and Danny Duggan due to Spike Trivet’s wrist injury and William Eaver’s PROTEUS title match, later on. If we cast our minds back to Chapter 93 in July, DNR defeated The NIC in the latter’s PROGRESS debut, but this time they are not outnumbered. The support of The OJMO and Connor Mills could provide the even playing field needed for The NIC to score their first victory in PROGRESS.
Danny Duggan is one to keep an eye on during this match after a very impressive showing in September’s Natural Progression Series. It should also be noted that despite not currently having an advertised match, The OJMO is set to return to action at Chapter 97.
PROTEUS Championship: Paul Robinson (c) vs. ‘Present’ William Eaver
There is no escaping DNR’s presence, it seems, as William Eaver is Paul Robinson’s second challenger for his PROTEUS Championship. I am excited for this match for several reasons, the biggest being the unique atmosphere the knockout or submission stipulation brings to a wrestling match. We saw how eccentric Eaver can be when let loose at Chapter 93, therefore his approach to this match will definitely make things interesting.
With how carelessly Eaver has fought recently, this match against Paul Robinson could be quite a brutal encounter – especially so after Robinson lost to Eaver at Chapter 94. I definitely would not sleep on this match.
Pretty Deadly vs. The Knucklelockers
Darrell Allen and Jordon Breaks of The Knucklelockers are set to make their PROGRESS Wrestling debut as a tag team at Chapter 97, where they’ll be hoping to make the same impression as their opponents Sam Stoker and Lewis Howley did at Chapter 96 by defeating The Young Guns.
Despite not appearing on the main card of a PROGRESS show as part of The Knucklelockers, Darrell Allen is no stranger to the PROGRESS fans as he has been around in the promotion since Chapter 2. Jordon Breaks has also wrestled a handful of dark matches for PROGRESS and has proven to be very popular in the process, and I am looking forward to seeing The Knucklelockers become a prominent part of the tag team division moving forward.
Ilja Dragunov vs. Cara Noir
In a highly-anticipated rematch from Chapter 96, Cara Noir faces Ilja Dragunov one more time. After their barn-burner in Manchester, Dragunov seemed to respect Noir following a spectacular performance. This is the match that convinced me to endure afive hour rail replacement bus down from North Wales to witness, and I absolutely cannot wait. Noir and Dragunov have unreal in-ring chemistry, and a second encounter could be the best match in PROGRESS this year.
This time around, Cara Noir will have to watch out for Dragunov’s Torpedo Moscow running uppercut after falling victim to it last time, otherwise the match was a very close fight. The combination of Noir’s growing star-presence and the big fight feel that Dragunov brings to the table makes for an unreal match atmosphere, and one that I cannot wait to relive after their last encounter.
PROGRESS Women’s World Championship: Meiko Satomura (c) vs. Dani Luna
Dani Luna has been at the forefront of PROGRESS’ increased focus of independent talent in 2019. Chapter 97’s main event sees her biggest challenge yet as she challenges none other than Meiko Satomura for the PROGRESS Women’s World Title. As big a challenge as Satomura might pose, Luna is not short of momentum after defeating the former PROGRESS and NXT UK Women’s Champion Toni Storm at Chapter 96, earning her respect and subsequently a title opportunity.
On home turf, can Dani Luna pull it out of the bag once again and defeat Meiko Satomura? Toni Storm seems to think so, but Luna will need more than the luck of a roll-up against someone the caliber of Satomura. One thing is for certain: whether she raises the championship or not, this could be the biggest star-making match in Dani Luna’s career, and one that is sure to cement her as a top player in women’s divisions across the British wrestling scene.
Tickets for Chapter 97 are sold out, however resale tickets may be found on PROGRESS Wrestling’s Twickets page.