PROGRESS Wrestling: Chapter 76 – Hello Wembley Match Card & Predictions


One of the absolute biggest achievements for British Independent Wrestling is taking place on the 30th of September. Progress Wrestling has become one of the most talked about BritWres promotions, garnering global appeal and a roster that’s really a who’s who of the independent scene. There’s no surprise that the brainchild of Jim Smallman has finally made it to one of the most famous venues in England, Wembley Arena, for the first time ever. Outside of WWE, wrestling shows tend to remain tucked away in community centres and smaller venues, but provide such an incredible experience for an ever-increasing demographic, it’s almost criminal that it’s taken the scene this long to be considered for a massive show in our capital.

I, for one, cannot wait to be a part of the show, the energy and the vibe is going to be unrivalled for quite some time. It of course helps when there’s a stellar card, featuring the biggest names signed to Progress – bringing together stars of NXT UK, the best and brightest of the UK scene as well as some special guests from overseas. We’re going to run down the entire card, providing some insight and our predictions for next week’s huge show.


The Thunderbastard Tag Team Tournament Finals


Those unfamiliar with Progress are probably lost in a world of whimsy and confusion right now. Put simply, The Thunderbastard Tournament involves 8 tag teams vying for the Progress Tag Team Championships in a round robin style tournament. Each team has accumulated a certain amount of points over the past few months to determine their entry into the gauntlet finals match taking place at Wembley. Teams can be eliminated via the usual rules, if one member is eliminated then you’re out, son.

Luchadore sensations Flamita and Bandido captured the Tag Titles during the Coast to Coast tour of the US. They are about to face their biggest challenge, having to face the following teams:

– CCK (Chris Brookes & Timothy Thatcher)
– Aussie Open (Mark Davis & Kyle Fletcher)
– Grizzled Young Veterans (Zack Gibson & James Drake)
– Anti-Fun Police (No Fun Dunne & Santos)
– Sexy Starr (David Starr & Jack Sexsmith)
– The 198 (Flash Morgan Webster & Wild Boar)
– M&M (Mills and Mayhew)

I think this match has the potential to steal the show early. For those aware of the 16 guys involved, you know that there’s such a mixed bag of styles, ranging from high-flying Cruiserweight style to powerhouse strong style to clashes of charisma. This is likely to end in utter chaos and become a glorious spot-fest, and I can’t wait.

My original picks to win the tournament, and reclaim their titles would have been CCK, who were unfortunately dethroned by Flamita and Bandido following some unfortunate injuries sustained by both Kid Lykos and Jonathan Gresham. Chris Brookes is a rising star who quite frankly deserves a big win, alongside Ring Kampf’s Timothy Thatcher who is stepping in as Brookes’ partner for the show.

PREDICTION: However I’m more inclined to go with Aussie Open as my winners. Fletcher and Davis have been taking the scene and the world by storm, bringing a very crisp, diverse style to tag team wrestling. The two certainly deserve the credit they’re due and that should come in the form of the Progress Tag Titles. That doesn’t go to say that any of these teams are undeserving of the win, this match goes to show just how incredible tag wrestling has become on the BritWres scene. Definitely pay attention to this match.


No DQ Grudge Match

Jimmy Havoc vs Paul Robinson

Former friends and partners are set to compete in a no disqualification bout that promises to be bloody, brutal and disgustingly beautiful. Havoc and Robinson are both notoriously known for their mastery of the deathmatch style, having had one of the most violent encounters in Progress history, leaving all sorts of weapons and carnage left behind in the ring.

In a surprising twist, Paul Robinson announced that he’d been cleared to wrestle again after facing medical issues and officially declared that he’d be returning to Progress. His first order of agenda was to referee a two out of three falls match between bitter rivals Jimmy Havoc and Will Ospreay. The conclusion of said match came from Robinson attacking Havoc and delivering a huge curb-stomp to his former opponent, costing him the match.

Really and truly, this is a rematch years in the making, held back by semi-retirements and Havoc’s sabbatical from the Progress brand. One guarantee is that this match is going to be gruesome, so be prepared to hide the kids behind the sofa.

PREDICTION: My pick to win is Jimmy F’n Havoc. It’s going to be crazy and I can’t wait.


Matt Riddle vs Mark Haskins

Matt Riddle

Anyone living under a rock may not be aware that Matt Riddle is set to debut in NXT very soon. In fact, he’s already been on a couple of live events with the yellow brand. However, being the upstanding chap that he is, Riddle is set to finalise his independent dates with this huge show at Wembley Arena against Mark Haskins.

Both men are former champions under Progress – Riddle winning the Atlas Championship and Haskins being a former Progress World Champion. So this is somewhat of a dream match for Progress fans. This match was one of the later additions to the show, despite the hype surrounding Riddle’s last independent appearance. Haskins was originally in contention for a title shot in the main event, however after being defeated by Tyler Bate, he was left without anyone to face. Naturally, it had to be Matt Riddle.

PREDICTION: My pick to win is Mark Haskins, in true wrestling fashion – if you’re on your way out, you gotta put some folks over. Mark Haskins is an understated part of the BritWres scene and should definitely been given a spotlight at Wembley to help take him forward. Very much looking forward to seeing both men lay into each other for Riddle’s swansong.


TLC Match

Mark Andrews vs Eddie Dennis

Another bitter rivalry between two former partners and tag champions. This feud began when Dennis attacked his friend and became a thorn in Andrews’ side leading up to Wembley. A match between the two was finally agreed upon after Mandrews’ protests, under the stipulation of TLC and the winner receiving a future Progress title shot.

Both Dennis and Andrews had incredible chemistry together as part of FSU, so it’s going to be a sure-fire bet that they’ll have an incredible match next weekend. The promos leading up to this match have been outstanding and again has the potential to be a show-stealer.

Expect chaos.

PREDICTION: Out of the two, I’d say Eddie Dennis deserves the win and thus is my pick. He’s really stepped up his game as of late and without a doubt has proven himself as a worthy contender for a championship. Mark Andrews is of course a phenomenal talent, but with his links to NXT UK, I suspect Progress might want to shift the focus onto those rising stars on the scene.


Atlas Championship

Trent Seven vs Doug Williams

Trent Seven

Just as a small preface, the Atlas Championship is essentially the opposite of a Cruiserweight Championship. It exclusively is defended by wrestlers who weight over 205lbs. So you can expect some big beefy British bois slugging it out for this prestigious title. This event has the don of Mustache Mountain facing a legend of the ring, Doug Williams.

An added stipulation to this match is that if Williams loses, then he must retire from in-ring competition. In a way I’d consider this a spoiler more than anything else. Doug Williams is indeed one of the most decorated British athletes of our time, having competed all over the world and won a bucket load of championships – but he’s far from done, being featured on World of Sport Wrestling on a Sunday afternoon. Of course the stipulation only really suggests that he would have to retire from Progress, however it would be somewhat undermining if fans were to then catch him wrestling elsewhere the next week.

On the flip-side, Williams is a man that deserves all of the fanfare for his last match. If it were to happen anytime, then it should happen at Wembley against one of the biggest stars of the modern scene. Trent is certainly someone who could naturally fill the gap of being his final opponent whilst also getting a great match out of him in the process.

PREDICTION: As much as I love Trent Seven, I’m inclined to go with Doug Williams to win this match and solidify himself as one of the gatekeepers for British wrestling.


Progress Women’s Championship

Jinny vs Toni Storm vs Millie McKenzie


Jinny has been absolutely killing it as the Progress Women’s Champion after defeating Toni Storm in Manchester. After sustaining an injury, Storm had yet to have a rematch against the Queen, now that rematch is indeed happening as part of the Wembley show. However, we have a third wheel. A companion of British Strong Style, Millie McKenzie earned a Women’s Title shot a few months back and has chosen to cash in that opportunity on the biggest stage.

All three are affiliated with NXT UK, which suggests that the three are gunning to represent the brand and put on a fantastic display of women’s wrestling. There’s a lot of talent on display in this match and I’m looking forward to seeing this unfold.

PREDICTION: My prediction is that Toni Storm reclaims the championship from Jinny, via Millie McKenzie. I think the feud between the two could be a huge main event deal for Progress and should certainly capitalise on a rubber title match between the two somewhere down the line. Storm is a fan favourite for the Brits and would definitely get a huge reaction if she were to capture the Progress Women’s title again this Sunday.

Millie McKenzie should certainly not be slept on in this process, however I think she’s really there to beef up the match a bit and take the fall. Nevertheless, good for her, she deserves this moment as much as the others do too.


Pete Dunne vs Ilja Dragunov

This match is being billed as ‘The biggest match in European wrestling’. Everyone knows of The Bruiserweight by now, he has taken the world by storm over the past two years and is set to face one of the biggest stars from WxW, an up-and-comer on the British scene, Ilja Dragunov. I think this is going to be a coming out party of sorts for him, getting to share a ring with someone on the level of Pete Dunne is going to expose him to a whole new crowd, meaning that this match is going to be all sorts of crazy good.

For the hardcore wrestling fans, this is a highly interesting match, with the cross-over appeal of Sting showing up to challenge The Undertaker back in the Monday Night Wars. Both are very unique wrestlers with a lot to live up to under the moniker they’ve been given. It’s hard to say that Dunne wouldn’t put in an excellent performance either way, the man is on top of his game and will put on a cracker of a match wherever he is. Now he’s representing the UK against Germany, surely it’s going to bring out even more from him.

PREDICTION: My pick to win is the WWE UK Champion Pete Dunne. Not only because he’s Pete Dunne but also because he’s Pete Dunne.


Progress World Championship

Walter vs Tyler Bate

Bate Walter

The main event of the night, a true David vs Goliath match: Tyler Bate vs Walter.

Walter has become the European belt collector, having an absolute arsenal of championships from all these different promotions. It’s hard to not get behind Tyler Bate in this match, as much as I love Walter and his hard-hitting chops, it’s time for someone to stop his momentum.

This is going to be a very long and gruelling affair between two guys who are going out there to provide a killer main event for an absolute killer show. In front of 10,000 rabid wrestling fans, this match is going to be hype.

PREDICTION: My pick to win is Tyler Bate. Since losing the UK Championship to Pete Dunne, he’s kind of faded back into being an underdog character. It works for him, and if it weren’t for the meteoric rise of the Bruiserweight then I think he’d be featured more in a singles role on NXT UK and the shining star of that brand. But things didn’t quite end up that way for Bate and now he can focus on supporting British promotions and increasing his own prestige by winning the main event on the biggest stage. It wouldn’t shock me if Walter was NXT bound by the end of the year. He’s an incredible athlete and I’m glad that he’s made his way into the main event of Chapter 76.

Limited tickets are still available for this massive show in London. If you’re a fan of this medium of wrestling then do yourself a favour and be there. Let us know if you’ll also be attending in the comments below. Beers on you.

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