By | September 5, 2022

With thirty years away from the U.K., WWE returned back September second with Clash At The Castle. Of course the UK crowd was destined to show out, as is their custom to always be the most vocal , utilizing their own facet of British strongstyle – specifically with their cheers.
Though this could be easily telegraphed, the crowd didn’t have too much support for Raw Women’s Champion Bianca Belair, that didn’t wipe the smile off her face though and she ended up flanked by Alexa Bliss (who appears to have fully given up her Lily schtick) and Asuka who arrived with a unique kabuki mask design covered in paints the shape of spirals.

They looked powerful, but as announcer Corey Graves constantly reminded listeners over the broadcast, these women might have been proven as competitors individually. but they had no actual experience as a team. That couldn’t be said the same for their opponents found in Damage Control. After a quick re-cap video package about the return of Bayley, Dakota Kai, and the newly repackaged Io Sky – Bayley made her way inside the squared circle to compete for the first time since her injury last year and the match was on.

Early in, Belair took control, and though she took the match ending pinfall, she was in the most important spots of the UK matchup.
Asuka covered the most ground and got some well needed screen time during the last half of the match. The story behind her and Io once being apart of a stable in a different promotion, fueling interest for her part of the program where she more than excelled with her backhands being the most memorable part of the overall Clash At The Castle performance.

Alexa Bliss was impressive, and that’s saying something – given that I usually tend to not support her work, especially as a face.
Her flips off the mat and participation within the superplex spot in her opponent’s corner reinvigorated my interest in her as a wrestler. Perhaps it was because of the time she spent in the ring with Dakota Kai. Both of their movesets are still old hat, but their chemistry was undeniable, and their Clash At The Castle was a good preview of what could come in a singles competition should either of these former champions retain some gold down the line.

Having the heels take the win is as controversial a decision as having Belair not defend her title for this event, but it works to continue to build Damage Control as a stable, even though they are already well over with just house shows. Having Belair eat the pin from Bayley was also in review an excellent decision to show that not only does Bayley “still got it”, but that despite the many loses Bayley suffered against Belair during her first title run, the bad blood is still there ready to squeeze for more sports entertainment. Though the Raw Women’s Title was not defended, the Smackdown Title was, with a question on the table as to if Shayna Baszler could return to her former prominence, with a brutality not seen since her NXT run.

Even though she started off things backing Liv into a corner, toying with her by locking in the Kirafuna Clutch within the first minute followed by a variety of other submissions, none of it really stuck – as did none of the spots in general as the clash waned on.
Aside from a battle of the armbars between the contestant and the champion, the match between Liv and Baszler was admittedly dry.
I wasn’t even able to really recall that Liv hit her Oblivion finisher for the win after Baszler had her grounded. This match was easy restroom material, if not for Baszler’s contributions, but it’s understandable to see her be utilized to enhance Liv for this program.

Liv Morgan after cashing in has become boring and it would be great to see Rousey take the title off her, hell, at this point even a returning Charlotte being handed the title would work. Though it would have been nice to see Baszler take the title it’s understandable why it wasn’t time. Looks like Vince was right, the fans shouldn’t get everything they want. Because let’s be honest : Liv Morgan as SD Champion is a Monster that the WWE Universe created, and subsequently will have to live with … for now.

SCORE: 2.5/5

Date: September 3, 2022