Predicting the WWE Women’s Tournament Field

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Women’s wrestling in Japan has been going strong since the 70’s when All Japan Women’s Wrestling began.  Since then, the sport has grown in spades.  Today, promotions like STARDOM, Pro Wrestling Wave, and Ice Ribbon house some of the brightest female wrestlers on earth.  We’ve already seen the talent pool pay off in a big way with the inclusion to NXT of Asuka, their current undefeated champion.  With the amount of talent in the far east, some of them absolutely have to be in this tournament.  Here’s five suggestions:

Io Shirai -Kanagawa, Japan

Starting off this list with a bang is the 27-year-old Tokyo, native, Shirai.  If you ever have a chance, look up some of her youtube highlights and you’ll witness one of the very best female wrestlers on the planet.  Coming in at barely 5’2′, Shirai has one of the most breathtaking flying arsenals you’ll ever see.  Combined that with raw, underrated power and you get Shirai, a women who has won every single title wrestling under the STARDOM banner.

Make no mistake, if Shirai takes part in this tournament, she will undoubtedly be one of the favorites to win the whole thing.  And the WWE is interested in her.  Shirai took place in a tryout for the company last March, and while writing this article, she has signed that contract.  It’s a massive signing for the WWE, one that adds a wealth of star power and could use the tournament as a way to introduce her the WWE audience.

Meiko Satomura – Niigata, Japan

If Shirai, is the best female wrestler in Japan, 37-year-old Satomura may just be a close second.  However, she’s a very different type of worker as she implements strong-style strikes and unmatched power moves. Also at only 5’2′, she shocks opponents and audiences alike with her brute strength.  As you can see in the above video, she also happens to throw a Death Valley Bomb that can very easily end just about anybody’s night.  If Satomura is selected, be prepared to see some striking unlike any female currently on the WWE roster.

Kari Hojo – Yamaguchi, Japan

In Hojo, we get our first superstar already signed to WWE.  She had her first tryout for the WWE last October and in March, once she passed her physical, she was offered a 3-year deal.  After some contemplating, and reportedly some hounding from Shinsuke Nakamura, Hojo finally decided to leave STARDOM and head for the states.

At 28 years-old this beauty from Yamaguchi, Japan has everything that makes a future star.  She has the look, the personality, and undoubtedly the goods in the ring.  She also happens to throw a top rope flying elbow that would’ve made the Macho Man shed a tear when he was still with us.  Whether it’s in this tournament or not, we should be seeing Hojo in a WWE ring very soon.

Arisa Nakajima – Saitama, Japan

Currently starring in the new all women’s Japanese promotion SEAdLINNNG, 28-year-old Arisa Nakajima has been running roughshod over the Japanese wrestling scene for over a decade.  She spent the first 10 years of her career in JWP Joshi Puroresu and captured a staggering 14 championships while competing in some of that company’s top matches.  If she makes it to the tournament, she’ll have a story rich with history against NXT champion, Asuka.  The two have wrestled each other 17 times in the past ( including two matches in 2013 where they traded the JWP Openweight title back and forth.  That’s something to build a program on and something to use if she ever gets signed full-time to the company.

Mayu Iwatani – Yamaguchi, Japan

Another competitor under the STARDOM banner, Iwatani is unquestionably one of the most loveable and infectious wrestlers around.  She’s like the Japanese version of Bayley, but with an edge. She possesses that never say die attitude and is the type that’s willing to take 3 or 4 shots just to land one of her own.  At just 24 years old, this mindset has led her to 6 championships in STARDOM already while currently being one of the top babyfaces on the roster.  Her inclusion in this tournament would undoubtedly spark a shot of life into any match she gets put in.  And like the rest of the Japanese girls, would be a very welcome sight on WWE programming.