Daisuke Ikeda vs. Shoichi Funaki (BattlArts GAORA Presents JCTV Studio Match 4/6/96)

Match Reviews

Shoot style Funaki’s back at it again main eventing what is technically the first ever BattlArts main event. It’s a natural sequel to the tag match in Korakuen, with Funaki now up against Ikeda in singles competition. Unlike that first bout, Funaki shows a lot more offensively here. In fact, I was quite surprised by how well he holds up against Ikeda in this, he in fact takes the lion’s share of the offense for the match. Funaki remains for in control for much of this, often by grounding Ikeda and working him over on the mat. 

Ikeda struggles to snuff out Funaki in this, especially when he’s rarely given the space to lay in those killer kicks that he’s known for. When he does get the chance, Funaki turns it into an opening to go after the leg instead, which further frustrates Ikeda. As Funaki zones in, I like how Ikeda escalates the nastiness of the match. He starts to get much pettier and grimy with his offense, including blatantly choking Funaki, grabbing at his hair, and clawing at his eyes. 

I like that Ikeda uses that nastiness to chip away at Funaki’s defenses, until the latter makes a single mistake. Funaki goes to the dragon screw one time too many, allowing Ikeda to anticipate and catch a flash kick right to the noggin for a KO. 

Efficient stuff, befitting the studio wrestling setting the match is in.

Rating: ***1/2

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *