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War on the Shore 2023 Report

As soon as you arrived at the Alhambra on the 22nd of April, you could feel the tension and anticipation for the biggest Odyssey Pro Wrestling show to date. War on the Shore has a 20-year legacy in Morecambe and with champions to crown and scores to settle, there was no better stage for the culmination of stories that have been building since the beginning of OPW back at Set Sail. Continue reading to find out exactly what happened!


Click below to skip directly to a match:











 

Sinergy vs Reece and Rogan - OPW Tag Team Championships


The final of the OPW Tag Team Tournament was one hell of a way to kick off this gigantic show. These two teams have been at each other’s throats since the conception of OPW, vying for the chance to become the first-ever OPW Tag Team champions. With a legacy to cement and bad blood between them, it was no wonder that this match kicked off with harsh blows that could be felt around the Alhambra. Sinergy (represented in this match by Troy Ryan and Anderson Daniels with Jack Roberts supporting) built up stacks of momentum in the opening as they threw both Reece and Rogan reeling to the floor with the electricity of the fans behind them.


These teams felt evenly matched with no clear advantage for the most part, both showcasing their usual synchronous teamwork. Sinergy got the two big men to the floor with tangent clotheslines and bulldogs, but Reece and Rogan fought back to isolate Daniels. Fans were angry but not surprised to see them sneaking behind the referee’s back to get illegal offence in. Daniels kept kicking out, much to their frustration, resulting in Reece yelling in the face of referee Laura Kate to count faster.


Daniels’ resilience soon paid off as he got the tag to Ryan who launched into the ring with shoulder tackles to both Reece and Rogan before hitting a harsh scoop slam on Reece who only just kicked out at 2. With Rogan down and out, Sinergy went for the Sinergiser on Reece, but Rogan recovered just in time to prevent this. Anderson was then victim to a brutal 3D which he just managed to kick out of.


Anderson must have been running on fumes at this point, as he escaped from a half Boston crab, sending Reece flying into Rogan allowing him to almost capture the win with a quick roll up and backslide. The titles were still anyone’s for the taking as Reece and Rogan hit a nasty double chokeslam on Ryan, which should have been the end but he had the wherewithal to kick out and slam them both.


Anderson then reappeared with a huge spear. This allowed Sinergy to get Rogan up for the Sinergiser and finally hit it for the three count. The roof was blown off the Alhambra as the first-ever OPW Tag Team Champions were crowned.


 

Rick Markus vs Craig Kollins - Morecambe Legacy Match


Both of these men have a storied history in Morecambe, so this match was a chance for them to get back inside the ring and showcase everything that OPW represents. The fans were equally split in their loyalties but were still highly invested in this big bald match-up, which kicked off with Kollins taking Markus down after locking up. Rick tried to fight back by shoulder tackling Kollins but he couldn’t get the bigger man down, instead being sent down to the mat himself.


That isn’t to say that Markus wasn’t strong enough for Kollins, though, as this was a hard-hitting, back-and-forth match. There seemed to be mutual respect between them, so when Kollins appeared to be hurt and slowed down the pace, Rick paused to check he was okay. This was the turning point, as Kollins pushed Markus away, leaving Markus confused and frustrated. The pair then exchanged painful chops with tempers beginning to flair.


Kollins turned it up a notch, pulling out his signature high-flying offence which you wouldn’t expect from such a big man, hitting an explosive suicide dive and elbow drop, followed shortly by deep belly-to-belly suplexes. Markus couldn’t be kept down so it became a slugfest with both men down on the mat.


It was Markus who built up enough energy to continue, hitting two clotheslines and a spine buster, but Kollins fought back with a powerbomb. In the closing moments, it looked as if Kollins had it in the bag, but quick thinking meant that Markus could roll him up and gain the blink-and-you-miss-it victory.


Both men seemed equally shocked at this outcome as the fans applauded their efforts. Despite being on the losing end, Kollins was shown respect with chants of “War Machine”. Markus offered the handshake, but Kollins hesitated, before saying: “I’ve been here 10 years!” and walking away. Markus looked downhearted at this outcome - I’m interested to see what this might mean for both men going forward.


 

Rob Drake vs Sam Bailey


This grudge match was the chance for Rob Drake to finally show his former trainer, Sam Bailey, that he does not need his ‘help’ anymore and prove who the better wrestler is. After months of Bailey costing Drake victories in OPW, it was no wonder that Drake was so eager to get going in this match. He went after Bailey before announcer SilentMark was finished introducing him, launching a harsh attack that the crowd were more than happy to see.


Bailey’s former student continued the tirade as he followed Bailey out of the ring and the pair brawled on the floor. Despite being two well-established technical wrestlers, the frustration between them meant that harsh elbows and strikes were the chosen techniques for much of this match. Back inside the ring, though, Bailey was quick to cleverly reverse Drake’s aggression against him, spiking him with a DDT before wearing him down with submission holds and elbowing him in the face.


Bailey didn’t seem to be laser-focused, though, yelling at the fans to “Be more” and at the referee when Drake didn’t stay down for the three count. This was perhaps what resulted in Drake being able to dodge his attack from the top rope and hit a huge clothesline for the hard-fought victory, much to the delight of the Morecambe faithful who will be looking forward to seeing what Drake does now he has got Bailey off his back.


 

Ethan Edwards vs Andre Dekker - Street Fight


This rivalry between the original GM, Ethan Edwards, and OPW’s resident bully and Spotlight henchman, Dekker, has been building for so long that it was impossible not to feel the red-hot hatred between them as they finally came face-to-face inside the ring. Ethan rapidly launched an attack on Dekker with fists flying, but perhaps his lack of in-ring experience meant that Dekker could thwart this momentum quickly. Dekker claimed it was “easy”, but Ethan showcased some impressive strength and wrestling ability at various points, proving he was not to be underestimated.


However, this match was less about showy moves and more about ruthless aggression. It didn’t take long for it to spill to the floor, with Dekker (at the unsurprising encouragement of Chris Brooker) grabbing a steel chair. The fans panicked as it looked as if Dekker was about to smash Edwards in the head, but Ethan dodged at the perfect second. This meant that he could take the chair for himself and launch an unforgiving attack. Ethan seemed in his element as he followed Dekker around the Alhambra with his weapon.


Even Brooker wielding a gin bottle didn’t deter Ethan as he ripped it from his hands and poured it all over Dekker. He then threw him back inside the ring and hit a power slam, feeling the energy of the crowd.


However, Dekker wasn’t out, as he continued to fight back and use the steel chair to his advantage, slamming Ethan onto it with an On The Rocks. He then hit another one, but pulled Ethan up before the three count, saying he wasn't done. This proved to be a mistake as Ethan hit a nasty low blow. With momentum back on his side, Edwards had surely secured the victory, if it was not for Brooker grabbing a microphone and demanding the referee to stop the count, saying “if you want to work in Morecambe again, you will respect the way things are!”


Edwards pleaded with the referee to ignore him but the distraction was enough for Dekker to grab the chair and attack him from behind before cementing his unworthy victory with a Pedigree. The Spotlight had the last laugh in this match but no one could take away from Ethan Edwards’ courageous fight in which months of frustration were finally let out. I can’t help but think that this saga has to end soon somehow…


 

Jennie B vs Leah Raven - OPW Women's Championship


This match was supposed to feature Alexxis Falcon defending her OPW Women’s Championship but SilentMark informed us that Alexxis Falcon could not make it to Morecambe today. As a result, co-GM Brooker stripped her of the title, much to the disbelief of the fans. Jennie B claimed that this was because Falcon was too scared and declared herself champion by default. You can imagine her outrage, then, when Leah Raven emerged as a new challenger for the now-vacant championship. After frustrating encounters with Jennie B in the past, this was a fantastic opportunity for Raven to cement herself in the OPW history books with the support of the fans firmly behind her.


This didn’t stop Jennie from attacking before the bell rang and beating down on Leah in sheer frustration. However, Raven took opportunities when they came her way, fighting back with a shining wizard and taking Jennie to all four corners of the ring with hard-hitting offence. Her resilience and athleticism had everyone in the building thinking that she would walk away with the championship.


For all of Leah’s efforts, though, there was Jackie B lurking, ready to tip the advantage to Jennie. At one point, when the ref was busy berating Jennie for breaking the rules, Jackie was wrenching Leah’s previously injured arm on the ropes. Later, Leah hit a scissor kick which could have been the end if not for Jackie pulling her out of the ring. It was at this point that the referee finally kicked him out to the satisfaction of the fans, but this didn’t last long, as the distraction meant that Jennie could hit a DDT and stomp Raven into the mat for the win.


“Miss Morecambe” has finally backed up her words and captured the title, but something tells me that this story is far from over.


 

Will Carter vs Nightmare


As Will Carter came face to face with his former tag team partner, it was clear that the effects of Isaiah Quinn were no longer felt by him as he basked in the rapturous love of the fans. Eager to unleash his frustrations on Nightmare, Carter began the match with his trademark energy, the two going back and forth with high-flying athleticism. As if to take out as many members of his former Freakshow family as possible, Carter threw Nightmare out of the ring, taking Sheriff Steele out in the process. He showed no fear when Steele and Isaiah both got on the apron, inviting them both to fight him.


The action was lightning-fast throughout; both wrestlers obviously know each other’s move set very well and were quick with reversals and counters. Nightmare had Carter’s top-rope offence scouted and managed to dodge, following this up with a sling blade. Soon, Isaiah Quinn got involved meaning Carter no longer had the upper hand. It almost seemed like he had successfully brainwashed Will again for a second, but Will screamed “No!” at him once again, proving that this chapter of his career is well and truly behind him.


With this, there was no stopping Carter, who successfully hit an elbow drop onto the back of Nightmare. The fans could hardly catch their breath as Carter hit two giant Helluva kicks to secure the victory.


The drama wasn’t over, though. Isaiah Quinn berated Carter for leaving him as a hooded figure appeared behind him and launched an unexpected attack. “Say hello to the newest member of the Freakshow, Isaac North!” announced Quinn. This was a twist that no one saw coming and indicates that the Freakshow’s tirade is far from over.


 

Alexander Grey and Lucas Neon (with Simon Hill) vs Cameron Merchant and Lance Revera (with Jason King)


This match was made when Toby Valentine came to the aid of Simon Hill after he was once again unfairly targeted by Lance Revera backstage at Overboard. Him and Alexander Grey were keen to stand up for their friend and shut Revera up once and for all. Unfortunately, Valentine couldn't wrestle due to injury, but his replacement was none other than Lucas Neon, no stranger to standing up for what’s right.


The fans were delighted to see Neon - almost as much as they were annoyed to see Jason King again, who continued to wage war against the North of England. He refused to wrestle in Morecambe but explained that he had picked Cameron Merchant to take his place.


With Simon Hill accompanying Grey and Neon to the ring, hoping to see Revera finally get his comeuppance, there was an empty spot at the commentary desk next to Mark Adams. I was honoured to be asked to fill this spot for this match which saw Grey and Neon cement themselves as fan favourites and utilise impressive teamwork throughout. Neon showed his trademark resilience whilst Grey displayed outstanding strength, going after the elusive Lance who tried to avoid fighting. Merchant had a solid showing, but he and Revera couldn’t quite click as a tag team perhaps due to Revera’s preoccupation with Simon.


Lance’s frustration came to a head when he threatened to disqualify himself and use a steel chair, but Hill appeared on the apron to stop him. Lance responded by connecting his fist to Simon’s face, sending him tumbling to the floor. Jason King took advantage of this distraction and handed the win to Revera.


This was a disappointing outcome but it didn’t stop Simon from hitting Lance with an emphatic stunner with the encouragement of Grey and Neon once he had recovered. Despite the loss, everyone in the Alhambra had a smile on their face after this.


 

RPD vs Ryan Hunter - OPW Championship


After going through all members of the Spotlight and having the championship unfairly kept from his grasp for so long, RPD and his loyal fans were pumped up for this culmination - the biggest match in Morecambe’s history. Only one man could walk away with the OPW Championship tonight.


Accompanied by Brooker, Hunter was full of arrogance as the pair squared off, cockily telling RPD “you’re in the main event now” despite ducking out of RPD’s attempts to lock up. He had words with Brooker before feigning locking up and instead kicking RPD in the stomach and taking him down with a headlock, saying “The belt is going nowhere!”. This didn’t stop RPD from fighting back with his signature boxing strikes and unleashing a drop kick.


The rivals left it all in the ring with the volume never lowering for a second, as the fans urged RPD to keep going even when Hunter was brutally wearing him down with fists and submissions. RPD fought to reach the rope when the STF was locked in, and after Hunter claimed to be ready to finish it with his lariat, RPD met him with a DDT and belly-to-belly. Not even a superplex from the top rope, thanks to a distraction from Brooker, could keep RPD down as he kipped up with his signature drive to keep going.


This culminated in RPD reversing Hunter’s attempts at a piledriver and hitting the Superman Punch, but Brooker was in the ideal position to put Hunter’s foot on the top rope to save the star of the Spotlight. Amongst the chaos, Hunter unleashed a chair shot on RPD without the ref seeing. Morecambe held its breath as we all thought it was over but RPD kicked out at the last millisecond.


Trying to maintain his energy, RPD was quick to go for the Superman Punch again, but Hunter expertly dodged, meaning the referee was knocked out instead. This was the ideal opportunity for the Spotlight to appear, threatening to end RPD’s championship dreams in seconds.


However, to everyone’s relief, RPD’s Born Ready tag team partner Rick Markus was suddenly tearing down to the ring, taking on all members of the Spotlight and chasing Dekker out of the arena. RPD then connected with the Superman Punch but frustratingly there was no referee to make the count.


This allowed Hunter to regroup before making RPD victim to a vicious piledriver but it still wasn’t the end as RPD inexplicably got the shoulder up. Hunter became more heated, trying to use his championship belt as a weapon, but the referee was able to stop him. As he went for the Hunter’s Arrow, RPD reversed it and began to build momentum again. There was nothing Hunter could do to avoid the Superman Punch this time. 1…2…3!


RPD had done it. Against all odds, the Spotlight had finally been silenced as the Alhambra erupted with ecstasy. There were happy tears shed in the audience for this history-making moment that will be forever etched in OPW lore.


Get your tickets for Mutiny while you still can to find out where OPW is heading after this flagship event.


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