On June 5th, a press conference was held to announce the match card for the 25th National Yoyogi Stadium Gymnasium. Along with the signing ceremony for the title match, the participating athletes expressed their determination.
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Detailed Press Conference Report:
Goddess of Stardom Championship
Champion: MIRAI & Ami Sohrei vs Challenger: Mina Shirakawa & Mariah May
Mariah: "Hi, I'm Mariah May from Club Venus. I'm sorry if my voice is a little hoarse. I might be a bit sexy today. As you all know, I've been in Stardom since December, and it's been about half a year. It was a wonderful half-year. However, I still haven't had the opportunity to challenge for the title. I'm told I can be a big star, a future star, but I'm not satisfied yet. I left a lot behind in England to come here, my family, my friends, and my nephew. I came to Stardom to become the best wrestler. To do that, I need to be a champion. Change myself, change us. Club Venus needs to be on top. I'm going to make Mina a champion again. By the way, I'd like to take a picture with you, is that okay? MIRAI is cute. Anyway, can I say something? During Golden Week, you gave me a full-on dropkick to my face. It cut my mouth. I couldn't take photos for two weeks because of that. So I'm going to take the championship belt from you and get revenge for that time. Then I'll take a lot of photos."
MIRAI: "Um, Mariah, you're a professional wrestler, right?"
Mariah: "Yes, I'm a professional wrestler. Not just that, I'm a TV actress and a model."
MIRAI: "Pro wrestling comes with injuries."
Mariah: "I am the face of Stardom. My face is important. I'm going to show you how it feels to get hit in the face at Yoyogi."
MIRAI: "So you don't want to get hurt. You said don't underestimate me yesterday at Korakuen, but aren't you the one underestimating us? I'd like to pound the essence of pro wrestling into you with all my soul."
Mina: "When I lost the white belt, Mariah's words became my power, so we really won against this champion team at Korakuen yesterday and seized a big opportunity. I'm thinking of connecting that to a bigger opportunity, a belt, becoming a champion. I think I know a lot about MIRAI, but when it comes to Ami Sohrei, what is Sohrei? I feel like I can't see her emotions, or if she feels frustrated. That's not good as a professional wrestler, isn't it? I feel like she isn't attacking the audience's hearts. Despite defending her belt in Ota, QQ and Oedo Tai were having a mic fight in front of her, and it's frustrating to see that. It would drive me mad, I would writhe in frustration, I would appeal in front, but they're just silent. What is Sohrei, does she feel frustrated, I'm very curious about that."
Sohrei: "I'm frustrated, of course I am. I got booed when I won the belt, and I don't feel appreciated even though I keep defending it. I'm the champion, but I feel like I'm being underestimated. But I'm fighting back in my own way."
Shirakawa: "You're struggling. You feel frustrated. But I can't feel that at all. I can't see it in your matches, so maybe you're not getting noticed as a champion because you can't communicate that?"
Sohrei then stood up, grabbed Shirakawa's hair and slapped her. Shirakawa returned the slap.
Shirakawa: "You should show that."
Sohrei: "Yesterday you said in the mic not to underestimate your persistence, Shirakawa. But I don't care about that. Even if your teeth break, even if you drop the white belt, you'll revive like a zombie. But you are, after all, just a zombie. Just a dead-end. You would die on your own, but I'll put an end to you."
Shirakawa: "Shirakawa Zombie. Another new character is born. Shirakawa Zombie, huh? Interesting. On June 25th in Yoyogi, I will let you taste the full flavor of Shirakawa Zombie. Mariah, let's dance like a zombie. Let's dance. Zombie, Shirakawa Zombie, don't underestimate me."
Sohrei pushes her away. Shirakawa exits the stage doing a zombie walk with Mariah.
Artist of Stardom Championship Cage Match
Champions: Giulia, Mai Sakurai, & Thekla vs Challengers: Mayu Iwatani, Hazuki, & Koguma
Koguma: "Hi, this is Koguma. The season for bears to sprout wings has arrived. Mayu, you also have a happy face. I can only fly when it comes to this high fence. Not just me, right Mayu? I felt your passion. Let's do our best as the Crazy Trio, Hazuki."
Hazuki: "Our Crazy Trio has done a ladder match, a cage match, and even a TLC. We've done everything, haven't we? This time, in our second cage match, I think we want to bring the Artist belt back to STARS. Right, Mayu?"
Iwatani: "We will take the belt."
Hazuki: "Since you signed the contract, Mayu, let's do some special training, like flying in the park, to prepare for the cage match."
Koguma: "Sounds good. How about jungle gyms, bungee jumping?"
Hazuki: "Nice, nice idea."
Koguma: "Let's go, Mayu, let's make the most of this opportunity."
Hazuki: "Let's take the Artist belt back to STARS and increase the value of our unit. OK?"
Iwatani nods reluctantly.
Hazuki: "Alright, we'll do our best."
Giulia: "We are the Bari Bari Bombers, the 30th Artists of Stardom Champions. Speaking of these three, didn't they lose during Moneyball too? Even when it was 2-on-1 with Oh My Giulia and FWC, they couldn't win. But this time it's a bit different, isn't it? It doesn't seem like it will be okay..."
Iwatani: "I think that belt is appropriate for STARS to wear. That belt... I will definitely take that Artist belt in the title match, but I'm wondering if we need the cage match option."
Giulia: "Are you quitting? Do you want to quit?"
Koguma: "Misunderstanding, misunderstanding. It's a play on words, a play on words, yeah."
Giulia: "Anyway, we finally got the Artist belt as a trio. We're the appropriate ones. From the top of the cage, I'll knock all three of you down."
Hazuki: "You're going to knock us down?"
Giulia: "I'll knock you down."
Hazuki: "Thank you. We all want to be knocked down. Thank you. That's helpful. We win, thanks. Great."
Giulia: "The details don't matter. What matters is that we have to defend properly. Right, Thekla?"
Thekla: "That's right. Hi, everyone. Spider, Thekla here. Why are we the 30th champions, the Bari Bari Bombers, fighting in a cage match? Why? Why do we have to fight in a cage match? It seems unnecessary to me. It's not a normal match. It's certainly a challenge. But don't misunderstand me. Koguma is annoying, and sometimes Hazuki pisses me off. Iwatani stole the SWA belt from me. So, it's definitely worth it to defeat these three in a cage match. Don't worry too much about the cage match, let's just do it. It's always fun. I'm looking forward to this match. I bet everyone else is too. Kifujin, you're looking forward to it too, aren't you?"
Sakurai: "As for the cage match, we're like young and mid-level wrestlers. We're surrounded by high walls, but we want to climb them and break through. That's how I feel right now. I am Mai Sakurai, the noblewoman of the ring. I, who am surrounded by seniors, will climb this high wall and rush to the top of Stardom, showing all the commoners. That's all."
Giulia: "Wonderful, wonderful. Thank you. I received your feelings, Sakurai. They were conveyed properly. That means Thekla and I can escape first, right?"
Giulia: "We'll leave the rest to you. It's a great chance, since we understood your feelings."
Sakurai: "No, no, no, no."
Giulia: "You'll do great in a 3-on-1."
Thekla: "Good luck."
Sakurai: "Wait, wait. Just wait a minute! Wait a minute, commoners' mafia!"
Giulia: "What's a commoners' mafia?"
Sakurai: "Please stop, I don't want to be alone."
Giulia: "Do your best, do your best. That's why it's okay, it's okay."
Giulia and Thekla exit.
Queen's Quest vs. Oedo Tai Cage Match
Utami Hayashida, Saya Kamitani, AZM, Lady C, Hina, Miyu Amasaki vs. Natsuko Tora, Saki Kashima, Starlight Kid, Momo Watanabe, Ruaka, Rina
Momo: "Hey, the other day, when I was feeling the worst after losing the title match, you guys from Queen's Quest came to pick a fight, and it turned into a total war. Remember, after I betrayed you, we had something like a tug of war match in January and it ended in a draw. I was thinking that we didn't have to do anything more, but suddenly you got all fired up. I'm a little curious about that."
Utami: "You betrayed us, and you think it's over? We've been mad all this time. That's why we came after you guys lost that big match."
AZM: "Total war? Sounds good, but (Utami and Saya) you two have been fighting and arguing for about a month now. Total war in this situation? That's a bit tough, isn't it? Have you two ever had a proper discussion? Huh?"
Saya: "AZM, don't you care about Utami at all? What have you been doing for a year since becoming the leader, Utami?"
Utami: "What have you been looking at for the past year? I've been working hard for the unit for the past year because I'm the leader. What have you seen?"
Saya: "What exactly have you done by working hard?"
Utami: "I've always been acting for the benefit of the unit, haven't I? Haven't you been seeing that? Or have you been so focused on the belt that you haven't noticed anything else?"
Saya: "Of course, I admit that. I've had the Wonder belt for about a year and a half, and I feel that I've concentrated too much on myself. But I think I have to do something about this situation because the results are not coming out, and that's the most frustrating part."
Utami: "I feel the same way. I've been acting on that feeling all this time."
Saya: "But still, we haven't been able to discuss it with everyone, and I don't know what you're thinking, honestly."
Utami: "I have no idea what you're thinking either."
Saya stands up.
Starlight Kid: "Hey, we accepted the fight you guys picked and Momo even proposed an interesting idea of a cage match. But your personal feelings are causing a mess, both in the matches and here. Stop it. It's disrespectful to us, who have won every match in this total war, to enter a cage match in such a state. It's too disrespectful. Honestly, it's annoying and nothing but a nuisance."
Natsuko: "Well, well, that's fine. As Kid just said, we Oedo Tai are really good at these matches. So, to keep us tense, I came up with a good idea. The last person remaining in the cage will be forced to leave the unit. How about that?"
Saya: "I think it's a good idea. It's what they call a loser leaves unit match, right?"
Natsuko: "You know a lot for a Kamitani. Well, there are many ways to leave a unit without betraying it. Yeah, to Utami. I know you're messing things up right now and may have lost trust, but I don't hate you, Utami."
As Oedo Tai stands to leave, Saya also stands and exits. As Lady C looks puzzled, QQ also leaves.
June 5 (Sun), a press conference was held and the card for the Yokohama Budokan Tournament on July 2 was announced. Along with the signing ceremony for the title match, the participating wrestlers expressed their determination.
Detailed Report of the Press Conference
Natsupoi vs Anou Saori
Natsupoi shows a message written on a drawing paper, "Hello, this is Natsupoi… I am Natsupoi. For now… Happy 8th anniversary to us."
Natsupoi: "(In a hoarse voice) 8th anniversary, 8th anniversary"
Natsupoi: "Natsupoi. We debuted in March, ah, I made a mistake. It was May 31st. We're the same batch. I thought I'd mention it because there are quite a few people in Stardom who may not know this. Not only did we debut on the same day, but we also started our careers in the same place. Even before entering the wrestling world, I wonder if there is anyone else who I knew while I was doing entertainment activities other than Saori. But, you know."
Natsupoi: "Natsupoi. That's why, ever since Saori came to Stardom and we've been doing this together, I feel at ease and happy when I'm with Saori, and I always laugh. I think there are a lot of things that I think are just as expected of her. So, I think it's fine as it is right now."
Anou: "Natsumi, I want to face you, I want to fight with you."
Natsupoi writes "No" on her drawing paper.
Anou: "Why don't you want to?"
Natsupoi: "I thought it would be kind of lame to tell Saori directly, and I've never said this before, but there's no one I want to lose to more than Saori. There's no one I'm more aware of, no matter where I am. When I look at Saori, I think it's a batchmate's joy to see her working hard, but I'm more frustrated than happy, and I don't want to feel like I'm mean, small, or miserable. It's happy now. Isn't it okay to be happy? Isn't it good to be happy? So, I don't want to show that side of me."
Anou: "You know, I still don't take it for granted that I'm standing in the Stardom ring. I haven't changed my feeling of coming here to shine even more. During the years I wasn't here, I was always watching Natsumi. Seeing Natsumi shine more and more, I wondered what I was doing, and people around me also wondered why my former partner was shining so brightly on such a big stage. I've been told that. But I have been slowly but surely advancing on my own path to shine, and I can proudly say that. To be honest, the thing that concerned me the most about the Stardom ring was meeting Natsumi. I wondered how I should face Natsumi and if I could talk to her well. But as expected, I feel at ease when I'm with Natsumi. However, after receiving Natsumi's technique for the first time in years, I realized that I have to face Natsumi, that's how it is. Don't you feel the same way, Natsumi? Your body was moving reflexively when we were the only two in the ring yesterday."
Natsupoi: "Anyone would react if you suddenly use a technique on them. I don't want to lose to Saori in anything. It's not just about winning or losing in the ring, it's more than that. Some people say that if we fight in the ring, we can understand each other, but whether we understand each other or not, we understand each other too much. I think I was able to get through Stardom because of Saori. But I didn't want Saori to come to Stardom. I hate feeling that way. I wonder if I'm going to be surpassed again, I don't want to lose anymore!"
Anou: "I felt the same way. I really didn't like seeing Natsumi rise in Stardom, and I really didn't want to see Natsumi. But I thought I had to watch, so I watched. I also missed some tweets."
Natsupoi: "I also missed some."
Anou: "But I overcame that feeling. I overcame it because I wanted to face Natsumi. And yet, what's this? No? Natsumi, you can't overcome it. You're lame. Was Natsumi this weak? That's why you can't beat me, isn't it? You're always saying things like that, that's why you can never beat me. Do you understand this feeling? You can never beat me, Natsumi."
Natsupoi: "You're so annoying!"
A brawl ensues.
Natsupoi: "Okay, I get it. I'll give you everything I've cultivated here in Stardom, the current me, all of Natsupoi. Be prepared. I'll crush you!"
Anou: "That's more like you, Natsumi. Mr. Ogawa, isn't there any rule? We've been fighting a lot in the same rules."
Ogawa EP: "Looking at the current situation, it seems that the two of you are tied together."
Natsupoi: "We're just tangled up."
Ogawa EP: "Ah, I see. I thought about it, and there was an old rule called an Indian Strap Match where each other's arms are wrapped with a leather strap and fight. It's a complete decision rule, so how about trying that?"
Natsupoi: "Indian? Isn't Fairy okay?"
Ogawa: "No, it's an Indian Strap Match."
Natsupoi: "Indian Strap Match?"
Anou: "I'll look it up."
High Speed Championship Match
Champion: Kashima Saki vs Challenger: FUKIGEN Death★
Signing ceremony via VTR
Kashima: "Today, because FUKIGEN Death★ can't come to the press conference, we're doing the signing ceremony by video. But to be honest, having a signing ceremony with FUKIGEN Death★, who only says 'Death,' doesn't make much sense."
Kashima: "Do you have anything you want to say?"
Kashima: "Can you only say 'Death'?"
Kashima: "See? Even if we do a signing ceremony at the conference, it's meaningless. I'll just end it here. You should sign properly too."
FUKIGEN: "Death, death. Death-death-death! Death!"
Wonder of Stardom Championship Match
Champion: Tam Nakano vs Challenger: MIRAI
MIRAI: "I am MIRAI, the God's Eye New Fighting Princess and the Real Cinderella. My reason for challenging for the white belt... In my mind, the white belt is a champion's belt in singles, so it requires strength, but I think there's a big part of it that's about emotion. It might sound strange, but I see the belt as something that embodies both weakness and strength. The professional wrestling I've seen portrays wrestlers as strong, cool, and never complaining of weakness. I have always believed that's the best way, and I've continued in professional wrestling with that as my ideal. That's why I hate the weak, whiny, and insecure parts of myself that emerge from time to time. That's what troubled me most during my recent absence. I didn't want to accept my weakness, I wanted to stay as the strong, cool wrestler MIRAI. This isn't about me being sick or anything, but it gave me a chance to think deeply about it, and I began to think that the way of life of seeking only strength and despising weakness was limiting myself. I thought that by accepting my weakness, I could truly understand my own strength. Tam Nakano sometimes posts cute tweets and sometimes posts tweets that seem to be suffering, but on the ring she is a shining wrestler, and she has some idol-like qualities too. She's been saying things like she doesn't understand me, but from my point of view, she's the one who's hard to understand. But I feel she has a tremendous charm in turning her weakness into strength. I actually went to see the match between Tam Nakano and Syuri, and it was a real shock. I think Tam Nakano's white belt has a lot of charm. So for these reasons, I chose to pursue the white belt filled with emotions, and I want to grow with it."
Nakano: "Hello to everyone in the universe, I'm Tam Nakano, the 16th World of Stardom Champion, the 18th Wonder of Stardom Champion, and a dual champion. MIRAI, sorry I'm a bit late, but congratulations on winning Cinderella two years in a row. Today, to celebrate both MIRAI's back-to-back Cinderella victories and my dual championship, I've brought cake. Here you go. MIRAI, the one with the strawberries."
MIRAI: "Is this cake really okay?"
Nakano: "What do you mean, 'Is it okay?' Of course, it is. I thought it would be nice since we've never really fought each other, and there's this saying that you can talk more openly when you share a meal together. So here's to congratulations. Let's eat."
MIRAI: "Thank you, let's eat."
Nakano: "Do you like strawberries?"
MIRAI: "I love strawberries."
Nakano: "You haven't changed your mind about the white belt? It's a belt that overcomes weakness, right? That might be true. It's only by knowing our weaknesses that we can become strong. I too have changed my weaknesses into strengths with the help of the white belt. But can I ask one thing? Why don't you want the red belt?"
MIRAI: "For me, the red belt represents strength, the strength of 'The Strong'. It's resilience no matter what happens. I've been close to Syuri and watched her defend it time and time again, showing her resilience no matter what. That's what I thought the belt was. I believed that I should take the white one, grow in my own strength, and then take the red one, to truly make the red belt shine. So, it's not the time yet."
Nakano: "So, what you're saying is that you don't have the confidence in your strength to carry the red belt now, isn't it? You're just being a coward. Why don't you say that you'll seize both belts with all your soul? Can I be frank? I've never felt your soul, Tam. What are you always putting into it? Air? Like that, you keep pushing off the chances you have now with various reasons. Are you planning to end your life like that? Do you know who else achieved two consecutive Cinderella victories besides you? It was Mayu Iwatani. You've accomplished the same feat as Mayu Iwatani, but you've left nothing behind. Are you okay with that? Like this, you're just waiting patiently for someone's seat to become vacant. The white belt, it isn't a belt that's sweet enough for someone who just sits and indulges in their own weakness. It's a belt worn by people who have feelings strong enough to more than compensate for their weaknesses. You can't wear the white belt with such a shallow soul. You want the white belt of emotions, don't you? Then, show more genuine emotions, okay? You talk about surpassing Syuri, but in the end, you're saying you can't carry the red belt that Syuri had."
MIRAI: "Syuri is not relevant here."
Nakano: "She is. You're always stuck to Syuri Mama, a baby full of blubber. How about acting cute with cream on your nose, isn't that right?"
MIRAI: "Okay, I'm pissed. Let me say this then, weren't you just Mayu Iwatani's goldfish poop until a few years ago? And you talk about Syuri and your unit, but what about your own unit? Just now, weren't Natsupoi and Saori Anou arguing? You're always leading the unit but can't do anything about it. How many years will pass with you only caring about yourself?!"
MIRAI shoves Nakano's face into the cake.
MIRAI: "How about that cream on your nose, isn't it cute?"
Nakano: "Don't you dare underestimate me, you hear!"
A brawl ensues, and Nakano stabs a fork into MIRAI's head.
MIRAI: "I'll definitely take the belt from you!"