Thunder Rosa vs. Hikaru Shida stole the show
Most fans knew they were in for a treat when Thunder Rosa officially responded to Hikaru Shida’s open challenge. This was the most high-profile AEW Women’s World Championship match so far and it lived up to the hype.
The NWA World Women’s Champion looked like a massive star when she entered the arena on Saturday night. She not only looked the part, but she brought the fight to Shida, the first woman on the AEW roster to compete in over 30 bouts.
This title match was incredible. La Mera Mera put pressure on the champion as she pelted her with some stiff strikes and locked in several submission holds. It was also clear from the beginning that Rosa did her homework.
At one point, Shida went for her signature jumping knee launched from a steel chair but Rosa ingeniously used the chair to land an emphatic dropkick. This was the story throughout the match. Rosa had an answer for everything Shida tried to do and she dominated for most of the fight.
Shida finally gained control when she hit Rosa with a devastating Meteora on the entrance ramp. However, La Mera Mera was far from done as she kicked out at one after the champion hit her with a Falcon Arrow.
Shida tried another but Rosa reversed it into a pin. This led to a phenomenal exchange of holds and strikes leading to the finish. Ultimately, Shida landed a backbreaker and running knee strike to retain her title. This was undeniably the match of the night and it probably cemented Hikaru Shida as the best in-ring competitor in the women’s division.