Results courtesy of WWE.com:
WWE U.K. Championship Tournament results, June 25, 2018: Gibson tops Banks in epic Final, earns U.K. Title Match
Armed with an irreverent outlook and a nasty submission wristlock he calls Shankly Gates, Liverpool’s Zack Gibson prevailed in the 2018 WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament in London’s Royal Albert Hall, topping the valiant effort of an injured Travis Banks in an epic tournament Final. He now looks ahead to claiming his prize: A WWE U.K. Title Match against Pete Dunne tomorrow.
Zack Gibson def. Gentleman Jack Gallagher in a Quarterfinal Match
Gentleman Jack Gallagher frustrated Zack Gibson with his mat-wrestling wizardry and even threw caution to the wind with high-flying attacks. The larger Gibson — who drew riotous boos from the fans inside Royal Albert Hall even prior to rejecting Gallagher’s pre-match handshake — deflected the onslaught when he could, even running Gallagher shoulder-first into the steel post. Liverpool’s No. 1 advanced to the next round by booting Gallagher in the shoulder as the 205 Live mainstay was descending with a flying headbutt and locking in the Shankly Gates top wristlock on the same limb for the tapout victory.
Joe Coffey def. Dave Mastiff in a Quarterfinal Match
Like bulls locking horns, the tournament’s two biggest competitors, Scotland’s Joe Coffey and the Black Country’s Dave Mastiff, tested each other’s strength in the early goings. They pulverized each other with big suplexes, headbutts and even a few stunning feats of agility. After Mastiff missed his favored move, a Cannonball splash in the corner, Coffey scored passage to the next round by dropping the 300-pounder with a discus lariat that Coffey calls Aw the Best for the Bells. Afterward, The Iron King told Cathy Kelley that he would show “no mercy” and win “by any means necessary” as the tournament progresses.
Flash Morgan Webster def. Jordan Devlin in a Quarterfinal Match
Wales’ Flash Morgan Webster showed incredible resilience (and more than a couple eye-popping aerial stunts) against aggressive Irishman Jordan Devlin. Devlin complemented his viciousness with high-risk offense, including a top-rope Spanish Fly that garnered a two-count. Devlin’s attempt at a moonsault missed, however, and Webster, the crowd favorite, took advantage by nailing Devlin with the Eton Rifle for the win.
Travis Banks def. Ashton Smith in a Quarterfinal Match
Ashton Smith has been extolled by no less than 205 Live General Manager Drake Maverick as a Superstar to keep your eye on. Unfortunately for the raw-boned Smith, “Kiwi Buzzsaw” Travis Banks had his number and cut him down with a variety of hard strikes. Smith didn’t back down, yelling “hit me” at Banks, but his hubris was misplaced. The New Zealander granted Smith’s wish, drilling him with a Slice of Heaven springboard enzuigiri and the Kiwi Crusher fisherman buster for the pin. Banks now looks ahead to a Semifinal showdown with Joe Coffey.
Toni Storm def. Killer Kelly and Isla Dawn in a Triple Threat Match to earn an NXT Women’s Title Match against Shayna Baszler on Night Two
With an NXT Women’s Title Match against Shayna Baszler tomorrow at the Royal Albert Hall at stake, Australia’s Toni Storm, Portugal’s Killer Kelly and Scotland’s Isla Dawn tore into each other in a fast-and-furious, every-woman-for-herself Triple Threat Match. They traded a bevy of snap suplexes and kicks, but Storm — who made an unforgettable impression when she made it to the Semifinals of last year’s Mae Young Classic — came out on top when she booted Kelly off the apron and downed Dawn with Storm Zero. Afterward, The Queen of Spades began playing head games with her next challenger, appearing among the U.K. faithful at ringside and staring down Storm from afar.
General Manager Johnny Saint and Triple H announced the launch of NXT UK
With Triple H by his side, British wrestling icon and new UK General Manager Johnny Saint broke the news that WWE has commenced the NXT UK brand. As part of the initiative, WWE will hold tapings in the United Kingdom throughout the year (get ticket information here), as well as introduce Women’s and Tag Team divisions to complement the current WWE U.K. Championship division.
Excited about what the future holds for sports-entertainment, Triple H had one parting question for the NXT Universe in London: Are you ready?
Zack Gibson def. Flash Morgan Webster in the Semifinal Match
Flash Morgan Webster got off to a fiery start against Zack Gibson, putting the Liverpool loudmouth on his heels with a highlight-reel-worthy hurricanrana. Webster also nailed one suicide dive, but when he tried the move a second time, Gibson caught him and deposited him in the entranceway with a corkscrew brainbuster called Helter Skelter. Webster barely beat the count back into the ring, but upon re-entering, Gibson caught him in the Shankly Gates and forced him to tap. As Royal Albert Hall came unglued with jeers, Gibson blew kisses to the fans, stoking their hostility toward him.
Travis Banks def. Joe Coffey in a Semifinal Match
Pitting Travis Banks, one of the world’s most gifted strikers, against Joe Coffey, one of the steeliest sluggers going, resulted in a predictably brutal and hard-hitting affair. Banks and Coffey wailed on each other with strikes, forearm smashes and chops, but Coffey eventually gained the advantage, using his size and power to inflict damage on Banks’ lower back. Even though he absorbed tremendous punishment, The Kiwi Buzzsaw stayed in the fight, and amid a rapid exchange of big hits, Banks deftly rolled up Coffey to score a sudden pinfall.
Making good on his promise to “show no mercy,” Coffey was anything but gracious in defeat, as he ambushed Banks after the bell. Coffey demolished Banks with a discus lariat and ravaged his shoulder by smashing it into the steel ring post. As referees tended to Banks, Mauro Ranallo and Nigel McGuinness speculated about how the attack might diminish Banks’ chances against Zack Gibson in the tournament Final.
British Strong Style def. Undisputed ERA in a Six-Man Tag Team Match
After enduring Undisputed ERA’s insults and mockery of England for weeks on end, British Strong Style refused to be beaten on their own turf by the bombastic, gold-clad faction.
NXT North American Adam Cole and NXT Tag Team Champions Kyle O’Reilly & Roderick Strong employed quick tags to isolate Trent Seven and, later, WWE U.K. Champion Pete Dunne from their teammates. Nonetheless, Dunne, Seven & Tyler Bate forged ahead, fighting both for national pride and the intense desire to knock the pompous Undisputed ERA down a peg.
The action was nonstop, and the fans inside Royal Albert Hall hung on every exchange as the battle grew into an instant classic. Seven regained control for his team after drilling Strong with the Seven Stars Lariat late in the match. Cole’s attempt to weaponize his NXT North American Title provided a costly distraction (allowing Strong to blindside Seven), and a pier-six brawl broke out from there. The BruiserWeight wiped out Cole & Strong with a moonsault to the floor, allowing Moustache Mountain to earn the cathartic victory after decimating O’Reilly with a rebound clothesline/dragon suplex combination.
Following their big triumph, Moustache Mountain now look ahead to challenging Strong & O’Reilly for the NXT Tag Team Titles tomorrow at Royal Albert Hall.
Shawn Michaels made his return to Royal Albert Hall
Among the many milestones in Shawn Michaels’ WWE Hall of Fame career, this one sometimes gets overlooked: In 1991, HBK participated in the first WWE match to ever be held at the vaunted Royal Albert Hall. Today, Mr. WrestleMania took part in another important moment inside the hallowed Hall, as WWE announced the launch of NXT UK.
Admitting he was nervous to try to follow the jaw-dropping Six-Man Tag Team Match that transpired moments before, HBK entered the ring to thank the fans in the region for their continued support of WWE, saying the NXT UK brand is WWE’s opportunity to show love in return.
Zack Gibson def. Travis Banks in the 2018 WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament Final
Sporting a heavily taped shoulder courtesy of Joe Coffey’s dastardly attack earlier in the night, Travis Banks put in a courageous performance on the biggest stage of his career as he faced Zack Gibson in the tournament Final. Yet, no amount of grit or determination from the gutsy underdog could quell the damage, especially once the piranha-like Gibson fixed his gaze on Banks’ bad wing.
Banks fought valiantly, using his good arm to blister Liverpool’s No. 1 with hard strikes. Banks even endured Gibson’s early attempt at locking in the Shankly Gates, forcing a rope break to the delight of the fans inside Royal Albert Hall. Later, Banks fought off the pain in his arm long enough to hit the Kiwi Crusher to claim a near fall.
Yet, after Gibson beat Banks to his feet following a late-game tope suicida by Banks, the end was in sight. Gibson reapplied the Shankly Gates back inside the ring and forced Banks into submission to claim the 2018 U.K. Championship Tournament. Banks demonstrated plenty of heart and grit, but the tenacious Gibson would not be denied. Following the win, Gibson had a heated staredown with the man he’ll challenge tomorrow, WWE U.K. Champion Pete Dunne.
Liverpool’s No. 1 may be as despised as he is dangerous, but come tomorrow at the NXT U.K. Championship, will he also be recognized as the new WWE U.K. Champion?