On 31st July 2021, Stardom’s 5 Star Grand Prix begins, and boy are we in for a couple of months of superb wrestling. Here at Pro Wrestling Musings we have already collated the full schedule (prowrestlingmusings.com/post/stardom-5star-grand-prix-2021-blocks-and-full-schedule-english) and details of all the competitors and their form/chances of winning the illustrious tournament (prowrestlingmusings.com/post/stardom-5-star-grand-prix-2021-competitor-profiles)(correct as of 16th July 2021).
So now it’s time to get the view of the experts…and associated hangers on….as to what they think about the tournament, what they are looking forward to, and who will be lifting the crown come December.
The contributors to this Joshi Jamboree are:
-Dan Humphrey @WrestlingRhymes [DH]
-Craig William @CraigPWMusings [CW]
-Scott Edwards @ScottEWrestling [SE]
-JPQ @bigpawsonapup [JPQ]
-Ziggy @ZiggyWrestling [Z]
-Ryan Gorneault @RyanGorneault [RG]
1) What is it that makes you look forward to the 5 Star Grand Prix and what are your fondest memories of the tournament?
[CW] I’ve only actually watched one, being a Stardom newbie last year. That being said, Japanese wrestling’s 2 block, round robin tournament is the best thing in wrestling. Add that to the fact that Stardom is currently my favourite Japanese wrestling promotion and we are on to a winner.
My fondest memories of the tournament last year were getting to see multiple Mayu Iwatani singles matches against a slew of top Stardom wrestlers as well as getting introduced to the wider Stardom roster; Momo Watanabe, Utami Hayashishita and Giulia were wrestlers that particularly shone for me in last year’s tournament.
[SE] The beauty of the 5 STAR Grand Prix is that you put what I think is the best promotion today together to create a tournament unlike any other. While many like to compare this to NJPW’s G1 Climax, I think the 5 STAR Grand Prix appreciates the stories at hand and the surprise factor more than any tournament in professional wrestling. For example, high speed wrestlers have this wonderful knack of pinning some of the favorites because they are able to shock them, surprise them, and simply out smart them. Then when it comes to the story or long-term relationships between these wrestlers, they never seem to fail to utilize it in the match.
When it comes to my fondest memories of the tournament, I think the 2019 version very well be one of their best as the star-making run of Hana Kimura is one to behold. The cockiness she has in her first couple of matches almost disappears after a six second loss to Saki Kashima, forcing her to build it back up and at one point go through the terrifying gauntlet of Mayu Iwatani and Momo Watanabe with the necessary need to pull a win out of at least one of those to have a chance come the last day. Her final match before the final against Hazuki is what makes professional wrestling great as they used their past history from Oedo Tai to tell the story further which is lovely. When Kimura defeats Tokyo Cyber Squad stablemate Konami in the finals, you very much know that Kimura is an absolute star.
[JPQ] I look forward to all the different types of stories that can be told during (and after) the 5 STAR GP. STARDOM is so schedule heavy that sometimes you can find yourself lost with the stories they’re trying to tell. The 5 Star allows the promotion to fortify their active storylines, getting the fans on the same page. Additionally, we’ll see continuations of 5 STAR storylines from the past ie Saki Kashima picking up upset victories vs Mayu Iwatani & Momo Watanabe and all being slated in the Red Block again this year sets up nicely for another unexpected upset. Finally, stories that start and conclude within the tournament, especially in-faction one up-womenship, are always welcomed as it brings depth to the tournament.
One of my fondest memories, in more recent years, was Konami vs Kagetsu on night 1 of the 2019 5 STAR GP. STARDOM has always done a nice job getting fans ready for the 5 STAR by stacking nights 1 & 2, and 2019 was no different. Hazuki vs Momo Watanabe, Arisa Hoshiki vs Jamie Hayter, Hana Kimura v Tam Nakano all were showcased on opening night but it was Goddess Champion Konami v Artist Champion Kagetsu that received the call to close the show and they tore the house down in one of Konami’s best singles performances, just awesome.
[Z] At this point the company is so much on fire it would take special booking talent to not have a great tournament. Other than a lot of really good matches that could main event some bigger shows in short period of time we have some interesting stories with rivals thrown into the same block. And of course, it's also easy way to (re)built someone up in quick fashion, so we can hope our favorites that are not in that top tier mix can get some time to shine.
And as far as my fondest memory goes, I’m actually not sure if I can pick one specific match or moment. Probably I’d have to go with first time seeing that many really good matches one after the other, and not once in a while.
[DH] I love tournament wrestling generally and I adore the round-robin format that Japanese companies use. The tournament structure allows companies to weave tournament-long story-arcs, give mini-pushes to certain wrestlers before bringing them down to earth, and at times creating incredible underdog stories. When you add that to the sheer amount of talent currently in Stardom, it’s hard not to be excited about the next couple of months’ worth of 5 Star GP action which I think will be breathless, unpredictable and dramatic.
My fondest memory of the 5 Star GP is also tinged with sadness as it is the run to the final of Hana Kimura in 2019. Singing her ‘Twinkle Twinkle Little Star’ song in the build up to each match she was without doubt the personality of the tournament. But it was also in this setting that we saw Hana really step up her in-ring work and as Scott points out above more eloquently than I can, she had some absolute bangers on her way to the final. And that final was brutal. As Hana so eloquently put it herself, Konami ‘killed her leg’ but Hana fought through to win. It was a tournament-long star-making performance.
[RG] I truly believe that Stardom has some of the best wrestlers in the world, but my inconsistent viewing habits mean that I have yet to watch a 5 Star Grand Prix in full. This year’s viewing schedule seems a bit more manageable, considering how the tournament is being spread over the course of two months. It’s pretty much a guarantee that this tournament will produce a few match of the year candidates (though it will be hard to beat that excellent Syuri versus Utami Hayashishita match), but the thing I am looking forward to the most is the short runtime per match. If this year’s tournament is set to operate like last year’s, then each match will have a twenty-minute time limit, which is perfect, because it almost always means matches will never drag. Plus, time limit draws do wonders to protect the competitors along the way. At this point, if any of the matches end up as good as Io Shirai and Mayu Iwatani’s 2015 5 Star Grand Prix match, then I’ll consider this whole tournament a success.
2) Which matches are you looking forward to the most from the Red Stars Block and the Blue Stars Block? No more than two from each block otherwise we’ll be here all day.
[CW] For the Red Stars, I am very excited to see Mayu Iwatani and Starlight Kid clash. It’s scheduled for the last day, so it seems like that will be a spotlighted match in that block. Another match I am looking forward to in the Red block is Giulia vs Mayu, this opened the Red Stars last year and was an excellent match; Mayu will be looking for retribution this time around. As you can see I’m a huge Mayu Iwatani fan!
Similarly to the Red Stars, I’m highlighting two matches from one wrestler in the Blue Stars. One of these is Takumi Iroha (who I am beyond delighted to see included) vs Utami Hayashishita. How will the World of Stardom Champion measure up to one of the very best wrestlers in the world, and non-Stardom wrestler? The other match I am most looking forward to seeing is the rematch between Utami Hayashishita and Syuri, following up their buzz-creating match earlier this year. This one has an Okada/Omega 3 feel to it with a lot of people expecting a similar outcome.
[SE] Wrestling can be a lovely thing and there are more than a dozen matches that I am excited to see in this year’s tournament. The first one in the Red Stars Block is Momo Watanabe versus Giulia on the final day of the tournament. Not only should this match carry loads of significance with these two likely being among the final true contenders to win the Red Stars Block, but this will be their first legitimate singles match. The only time these two have ever faced off against one another in a singles match was the 2020 Cinderella Tournament, which lasted a minimal 4 minutes and 37 seconds. Yeah, doesn’t count. These two have so much dislike and hatred for each other that with the likelihood of winning the block coming down to this one, it should be nothing short of fantastic.
The second match in the Red Stars Block that intrigues me is Mayu Iwatani versus Starlight Kid, which is also on the final day. Despite not initially being a fan of when Kid was forced to head over to Oedo Tai, this match has some of the best story in the entire tournament. Let’s get this out of the way. I am willing to say that Mayu Iwatani is the greatest of all time when her career concludes and there’s a reason for that. She does not miss ever. Everything she does not only has you believing but wondering if she can pull it off. When the final day of the tournament comes and she is forced to face her former pupil who has turned into an absolute star away from her, it will have all of us anticipating something amazing. Kid will have the potential to eliminate Iwatani from contention and she could indeed do that, furthering their story that much more.
The Blue Stars Block is possibly the most stacked block any tournament has seen in some time. So, let’s start this off by saying that any match with Takumi Iroha is at the top of my list. Between her and Syuri, there may not be a more intriguing schedule of nine matches for one participant in this entire tournament. That being said, my clear choice is Iroha vs. Syuri which also happens to be on the final day. These two are the favorites on the Blue Stars side in my opinion and should be. To add on to the intrigue here, this will be the first-ever singles match between the two. With the physicality and hard-hitting strikes they bring forward, this could be the match of the tournament.
When looking at the Blue Stars Block match and thinking of the final bout to be most excited for, I believe that the credit has to go to Iroha facing off with World of Stardom Champion, Utami Hayashishita. The champion has become a certified star since winning last year’s 5 STAR, putting on all-time performance after all-time performance. This should be the same as not do I only believe it should be a perfect clash of styles, but will be the first of two matches between these two this year. Iroha will win this match and get a shot at the World of Stardom Championship, mark my words.
[JPQ] First and foremost in the Red Block I’m down right invested in what they decide to do with Momo Watanabe. She’s been riding the pine in a lot of ways since the back half of 2019 – never losing her position in the upper-mid/lower main event position – however she hasn’t had that marquee win either that made you say, ‘WOW! That’s your next world champion’. I think that changes this tournament. Queen’s Quest vs Donna Del Mondo is as hot a feud as you’ll find in professional wrestling today and Queen’s Quest Leader, Momo Watanabe, will have to motor through High Speed Champion Natsupoi, 2020 5STAR GP Block Winner Himeka, & current Goddess of STARDOM Champion & DDM Leader Giulia to ensure Red Block victory. Look for Momo Watanabe vs Giulia to try and steal MOTT.
A fun match to keep an eye on in the Red Block as well is Giulia vs Saki Kashima. Saki is celebrating 10 years in STARDOM and the crafty veteran has come close a couple times to taking down Giulia one on one. Saki handed Giulia her first defeat in STARDOM during a trios match and as recently as earlier this month found herself in the driver's seat of a singles match that got away from her at the end. Saki is known for her flash pins in the 5 STAR GP, can Giulia keep her wits about her and not get trapped in the kinshiekasa? We’ll find out.
In the Blue Block, Tam Nakano vs Konami stands off the page as a can't miss match up. These two had a banger in the 2020 5 STAR GP as well as a super solid match at the beginning of July. Tam is having the best matches of her career during this Wonder of STARDOM run while Konami has been heating up since Natsuko Tora’s unfortunate injury. Look for these two to show up and put together one heck of a wrestling match.
Another match to keep an eye on is Takumi Iroha, the Ace of Marvelous Pro vs Saya Kamitani. Takumi vs Utami/Syuri (heck, really anyone) is worth our attention but I think this is a good bar to see where Saya is on her journey to the top. They’ll be a lot of tests in this Block for Zoom Zoom but if she can pull out a victory against someone as formidable as Takumi Iroha then she really is the future of STARDOM and the confidences Rossy and Fuka have shown in her will begin to pay off.
[Z] Let's get the easiest one out of our way first – everyone will be waiting to see the big Utami vs Syuri match. The other one from that group I'm excited for is another teacher vs student confrontation between Syuri and Konami. I enjoyed their match at the 10th Anniversary show and I'm sure ready for another round of their more grounded, technical based rivalry. With hopefully more time than 6 minutes!
On the red side of the tournament there will be a lot of going to the past for Mayu Iwatani with her matches against Saki Kashima, Fukigen Death and Starlight Kid, but after recent events around the last of the three names, their match on September 25th certainly look interesting to me!
And that Giulia vs Momo match definitely looks like the Red Block finalist decider between two wrestlers that have struggled lately (or is it only one of them, and the other was supposed to?) which also have the potential to be 5Star's best match.
[DH] Most of my top choices have been covered above so I’ll throw out a couple from left-field. In the Red Stars Block, any match with Mayu Iwatani will be superb, but I’m interested to see her match with Natsupoi. Their styles should match up well and Poi had quietly been putting together a host of good performances before an injury. I also think the clash of styles and size will make Starlight Kid against Himeka a fascinating watch, particularly with the darker side of SK’s character now coming through.
In the Blue corner the all Cosmic Angels clash between Tam Nakano and Unagi Sayaka should be compelling, particularly with Unagi riding somewhat of a wave at the moment. I also think the re-run of the Cinderella Tournament final between Saya Kamitani and Maika will be one to watch. These two are a big part of the future of Stardom and rarely put on bad matches.
[RG] The Red Stars Block will of course be massively entertaining considering that Momo Watanabe and Mayu Iwatani are there, but the rematch between Natsupoi and Starlight Kid feel a lot more momentous to me, even if the High Speed Title isn’t on the line this time. Expect their match to be short, but highly entertaining. It will also be really interesting to see Koguma in more singles matches, since we’ve only seen her in two since she returned to the company after a six year break earlier this year.
Now, Takumi Iroha might just be the best wrestler in The Blue Stars Block, so I expect some bangers from her, especially against the person I consider to be the second-best of the block, the always great AZM. Out of everybody in the tournament, I think The Blue Stars Block’s Ruaka could have her official breakout moment. She has held her own pretty effectively in multi-women tag team matches, but hasn’t had that distinctive singles bout. This could very easily be her year, and with opponents like Konami and Tam Nakano, we could see the sixteen-year-old enter the stratosphere of Stardom.
3) After Himeka’s run to the final in the 2020 edition, who will be the surprise package in this year’s 5 Star Grand Prix?
[CW] I think it has to be someone from Oedo Tai. That faction has received a lot of ire since losing Kagetsu and quite rightly so, however they have become hot once again recently until losing their leader to long term injury. I think the breakout star of this tournament will be Starlight Kid as she cements her attitude change. However, I think the right Oedo Tai member to put in this position would be Konami.
[SE] Maika or Konami. Crazy to think either of these choices fit that possibility seeing that they are in the stacked block per say, but it feels right. Maika is someone that Stardom clearly sees a lot in and for good reason. If she rolled onto the finals much like Himeka did last year, I wouldn’t be shocked and actually welcome that surprise of sorts. Same goes for Konami, who remains one of the more underappreciated stars in Stardom. Not only is she always consistent, but she is often protected because people notice how great she is. Her last singles pinfall loss came back in March, so this could be a sign of things to come. It wouldn’t be much of a shock either seeing she’s two years removed from the finals herself.
[JPQ] Takumi Iroha! Tough for an outsider (although is she really?) to come into the 5 STAR GP and pick up a Block win. It’s even tougher when the World, Wonder, SWA, Goddess, Future, & 2 Artist champions are all in your block. The 5 STAR GP is a great way to reacclimate back into wrestling after she sat for so long recovering from injury. With Marvelous vs Sendai feuding all Summer, can we really expect her to come in to the 5 STAR GP after many months recovering & win a stacked STARDOM Blue Block, knowing a probable Chihiro Hashimoto v Takumi Iroha 3AW title match is in the near future? If anyone could – its Takumi Iroha!
[Z] I don't know if I can say if it would be surprise as she's the champ and had some good matches since arriving in the company last year, but I'd like to see Natsupoi in the ring for as long as possible. Every time I watch her wrestle, I think she is so underrated and could do more than we see. Here's hoping for Wonder of Stardom champion level presentation – it's white too!
Other than that, Momo or Konami running to the final would be pleasant surprise and I think Starlight Kid will have some good win/loss record – unfortunately thanks to her new stablemates' shenanigans... every... single... match...
And AZM, who is growing on me lately. Maybe she will not be in the close race for the final, but I feel she can stop some bigger name from achieving the dream. The more I think about that, the more names I can think of – and that's gonna be the other interesting aspect besides who will win it all.
[DH] Although she’s in the ‘group of death’ for the tournament, it feels as if Stardom have really been getting behind Unagi Sayaka recently so whilst I’m not expecting her to win the block, I think she’ll pick up some big wins and surprise a few people.
Similarly Starlight Kid is in the midst of a fascinating character change, and I think she’ll come into that match with Mayu on the last day with quite a few points to her name…provided she can stop her Oedo Tai teammates repeatedly getting her disqualified.
[RG] I’d have to agree and say Takumi Iroha. There’s no denying that she was a great asset for Stardom before she left to join Marvelous That’s Women Pro Wrestling, but her three Stardom matches from 2020 were transcendent. As long as Marvelous is willing to loan Iroha out to Stardom, I don’t see a problem with her at the top of the card, even on a part-time basis. This tournament could be the way to make that happen...
...or, Momo Watanabe could be the surprise package?
4) Is this Momo Watanabe’s year? No but seriously who do you think will win the Red Stars Block?
[CW] This is a hard question. I think it’s between her and Giulia, actually. They have been focussing on Giulia all year, often to the detriment of Utami Hayashishita and her World of Stardom Championship. Are they ready to pull the trigger or does Giulia need to come a bit further narratively before being fully elevated into the main event picture?
[SE] Momo Watanabe is my favorite wrestler in the world right now. If there was a reason to list it, she would be 1A, Mayu Iwatani 1B, and Marvelous wrestler Mio Momono being 1C because I don’t want to pick. That being said, this could be her year. To me, it’s down to being Watanabe or Giulia. With them facing off on the last day, it only feels right to go with these two. I am still leaning Giulia after all these months because she is going to be the next World of Stardom Champion, but they could hold off and give Watanabe the win. Either way, you will not see me complaining.
[JPQ] It’s so hard to go against Momo & Giulia as they are the front runners. Mayu Iwatani and Starlight Kid are intriguing as well – ultimately, I think Mayu costs SLK the block and Momo tops Giulia to move on to the finals. THIS is the win that puts Momo back on top of QQ.
[Z] Yes, please! Unfortunately, since she lost the Wonder of Stardom title two years ago, it feels like she is more or less floundering in the Tomohiro Ishii exclusive jobber role and Bushiroad higher ups don't see her main event potential. And it's not even about the belts – I can't remember any somewhat meaningful feud or storyline since then with maybe the exception of matches against Utami in Hayashishita's rise to the top of Stardom as well as their Queen's Quest stable. Here and there we've seen the old "You're So Out Of My League It's Not Even Funny" Momo, who would try to kick someone to death and then laugh in their face because they can’t take more, but it was mostly against undercard talent to prepare her for high profile loss. I don't think she will win, but going to the final could be some rehabilitation and I think chances for this went up couple of weeks ago thanks to Syuri. More on that later.
[DH] It really is hard to look past Momo or Giulia as everyone has said above. I confidently predicted Momo would win last year’s tournament so I’m not going to jinx her again. Instead I’ll throw my lot behind Giulia who has been not very slowly building towards dominating Stardom ever since her arrival. With a Cinderella Tournament win already under her vast collection of belts, I think she will be the one from the Red Stars block to get that opportunity in the final.
[RG] Expect the worst, and hope for the best. As much as I’d like her to win, or at least be pretty damn successful throughout the tournament, her winning, and especially her going on to win the belt, seems like a lost cause. At this point, it’s become something of a joke on Twitter that Watanabe will (or should) leave the company because Rossy Ogawa doesn’t care about her enough to push her. I don’t expect her to win the tournament, even though her winning could result in one of the best feel-good moments in wrestling in 2021.
5) Who will win what looks like a brutally competitive Blue Stars Block?
[CW] Brutally competitive indeed. It really depends what the deal with Takumi Iroha is. It would be a huge risk to have her win the block and fight in the final. However, it may be the best way to create another Utami/Syuri wave of buzz around world-class in-ring wrestling. If not her then Konami, AZM, Kamitani or Maika would all make a worthy finalist. I’d go with Iroha, though!
[SE] Syuri or Takumi Iroha. There, to me, isn’t anyone else I firmly feel comfortable unless they went with the surprise of a Maika or Konami. Syuri has had one of the best years in all of wrestling and has established herself as one of the best in the world. The way she carries herself never ceases to amaze and she is on a redemption tour back to the World of Stardom Championship and making it to the finals to face off with tag team partner and Donna del Mondo stablemate Giulia makes a lot of sense in a numerous number of ways.
Takumi Iroha is where I also go into consideration because not only is she one of the best in the world but has everything it takes to make it to the finals. Iroha is going to steam roll a lot of the competition. The only reason I don’t have her as my favorite to win is because I see her defeating Hayashishita before the tournament is completed, granting her a title match anyways.
Let’s go with Syuri.
[JPQ] #MaikaStyle to win the Blue Block. I expect a consistency out of Maika with no upsets against “lesser ranked” talent while navigating the draw triangle that Syuri, Utami, & Takumi will find themselves in. If Maika can go 1-1-1 against the Big Three – she'll be your 2021 Blue Block Champion.
[Z] I would love to say Konami, as I'm waiting for her next step in singles division since she got to the finals of 5 Star and Cinderella tournaments back in 2019. Natsuko Tora's recent injury could be blessing in disguise, as until now she was presented as that one somewhat serious threat to other main eventers for Oedo Tai and it looks like that role is now going to Konami. As with Momotaro in the Red Block, going to the finals in the right style could do the job to some extent.
I would love to say Konami, but looking at the schedule I can clearly see Syuri and Takumi Iroha battling in the "semi-final" of the group. Idea of having Iroha win the big one and go at it with Utami sounds fun, but I don't think they would book outsider to win their big prize. And I can't see her losing in the final, because...
[DH] With my ‘bookers hat’ on I don’t see Utami going back-to-back and I think maybe Stardom will give the Utami v Syuri war a bit of a break after their third match in the Block, and I personally wouldn’t want to see her lose in the final. So I think we may see Takumi Iroha bomb her way to victory in the Blue Stars block. Stardom have shown before that they aren’t afraid to give the rub to non-Stardom wrestlers, and away from all that practical malarkey, Iroha is absolutely sodding awesome.
[RG] Am I too high on Takumi Iroha? Maybe.
I just know Takumi Iroha consistently winning in Stardom could result in a Stardom – Marvelous relationship blossoming even more. Whatever has to be done to get more eyes on Hibiki, right?
6) Time for the big one. Who will win this years 5 Star Grand Prix, and what does the future hold for the woman who is triumphant?
[CW] There’s a chance Iroha wins as part of a deal that eventually sees her re-join Stardom, however the more likely option is Giulia. They are, oh so, high on Giulia and it feels like we’ve arrived at the time for her to take another step towards the top of the mountain. Another 6 months of them profiling her at the expense of the champion wouldn’t make sense. Her growth and star power are just about at the level of being the number one star in Stardom.
[SE] I have thought this for months and while the entry of Takumi Iroha messed with my mind a bit, I will not go against Giulia. There’s so much that can stem from this if so. If she faces Syuri in the finals and stops her from getting her one dream (the red belt) that that can further something between them. And to double down, if she goes onto win the World of Stardom Championship before Syuri, the dissention between the duo increases that much more. It’s rare that you have such an open field for a tournament like we do this year, but we legitimately have six or seven potential winners. Buckle up.
[JPQ] I booked myself into the Konami trap of 2019 and its hard to believe they’d go back-to-back finals in the Cinderella & 5 STAR GP 2 years apart but here we are. Oh, and just like Konami, she’ll fall short once again. Maika-All-Finals Era will begin with a broken heart story. Maika vs Momo one-on-one allows for a competent opponent for Momo to beat for the tournament win, 50-50 booking (Momo lost to Maika in the 5STAR 2020), and saves matchups as Momo Watanabe reasserts herself into the main event scene. Momo Watanabe, your 2021 5 STAR GP Champion. Momo goes on to face Utami again for the red belt – will she succeed this time around? We'll see.
[Z] Syuri. It's Syuri guys. And the future holds failure after excellent match.
I know you can book the Red Belt rematch – which they would be quite frankly idiotic not to do, considering the buzz around the first one not only in the Stardom's fanbase, but around the world - from just having her beat Hayashishita (or go with another time limit draw?) in their block match and crown someone else, but this is the only scenario I can imagine where Giulia doesn't win it. And I believe the moment she gets her shot at Utami, we have a new champion, so we gotta hold that one off for a while.
Of course, you could go with Momo – who I'm predicting to lose the final – but she has already challenged Utami for the belt, so I don't expect that to happen simply because of it meaning unnecessary rematch.
Similar story goes with Mayu, but in her case there's even more recent drama in people betraying her. One of them she will meet in the final day of A Block competition, the other I feel will be her target in the fall with the White Belt at stakes.
[DH] Whilst it feels like the obvious choice, I think it is the most likely scenario. Giulia wins the 2021 5 Star GP. In beating an ‘outsider’ in the final she would cement herself as a bit of a Stardom hero, and we would then be on the road to her coronation as Red Belt title holder. With the tag-titles also still around her waist, and the merry-go-round of Utami probably having some other challengers after the block results, I think they can hold off on that Giulia v Utami confrontation for a bit. And I think it would be well worth doing that, as it has the potential to be an absolutely superb title match.
[RG] While I’m not certain who I think will win, I can at least narrow it down to someone in the Donna del Mondo faction. Giulia and Syuri seemingly have the most momentum headed into this tournament, but Maika could easily make it to the finals, and we should never sleep on Natsupoi. Regardless of who wins, this faction will seemingly have a lot of success.