In this, the PGWA's twentieth anniversary, we look back to our tenth year, with the long-awaited release of a transatlantic GrudgeMatch shot on November the 9th of 2002!
Then as now, Shelby Beach was one of England's top female wrestlers, and in late 2002 she was on a wrestling tour of the United States. She asked the PGWA to provide her with a worthy challenger, and we brought in Persephone. Although still a relative newcomer at the time, the young blonde had already spectacularly launched what has since prove to be a magnificent career with amazing battles against the likes of Alexis Laree and Christie Ricci. We were confident she would give Shelby all the fight she could handle, and that the experience would be tremendously valuable for Persephone as well.
In the opening moments however, it would seem that Persephone would have been very happy to NOT have had this experience, as Shelby swiftly takes control, muscling her opponent down to the mat and locking on a sleeper hold that threatens to end this match before it even really begins!
But the Yank is able make her escape, and the tide goes back and forth between them. Quickly realizing that she isn't going to overpower her adversary, Shelby methodically focuses her attack on specific body parts, first working over Persephone's arm, then targeting her thighs and knees, obviously concluding that if she can take the American's limbs out of the equation, the blonde would be helpless.
Both women punish each other with ankle locks, finger locks, figure fours, Boston crabs, Mexican crossed arm ceiling holds, body scissors and Indian death locks, among myriad other moves. The more experience Shelby controls much of the action, but to her frustration, time and again she is unable to make Persephone submit, and the American girl heroically endures the torture and dishes out some of her own!
This titanic best of three falls battle is waged for an astounding thirty minutes, and only ends with the two women, nearing the point of absolute exhaustion, struggling in make-or-break final efforts to finish the other off. One finally captures the other in a crippling hold, forcing the victim (with the greatest reluctance) to tap out, or risk serious injury!
That this amazing match has gone unseen by the fans for a decade was a tremendous mistake on our part. The simple reason is that we had such an embarrassment of riches at the time, and the PGWA was releasing so many great matches, this one was simply set aside until needed…and then, criminally perhaps, forgotten. But it is now seeing the light of day, and after watching this, we think you'll agree that it absolutely qualifies as one of the best matches of 2002... or any other year!
32 minutes | 277 meg WMV | 640 x 480 | 2,000 kbps | Just 22.95!
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