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EVIL Wins NEVER Openweight Title At NJPW Wrestle Kingdom 16

A new NEVER Openweight Champion

The NEVER Openweight Championship was the first title to change hands inside the Tokyo Dome on day one of Wrestle Kingdom 16. 

Champion Tomohiro Ishii defended the gold against Bullet Club's EVIL on January 4 and it was the former IWGP Heavyweight Champion who captured the NEVER Openweight Title following an interference-laden match.

Both Ishii and EVIL fought back and forth during the opening stages but the other members of the House Of Torture sub-group Dick Togo, Yujiro Takahashi and SHO quickly got involved after the referee was taken down. Ishii's faction-mate YOH made the save for The Stone Pitbull, taking out Takahashi and SHO, but he was unable to halt Dick Togo. Further interference from EVIL's manager then followed and the challenger decked Ishii with a belt shot to the head before he followed up with Everything Is EVIL for the victory. 

With today's victory, EVIL becomes a double champion in New Japan Pro-Wrestling once again, holding the NEVER Openweight Title and NEVER Openweight Six-Man Tag Team Championship with SHO and Yujiro Takahashi.

Today was Ishii's first defence of the NEVER Openweight Title in his sixth reign with the gold. He defeated Jay White for the title at Battle In The Valley in November. His latest reign comes to an end at 52 days. 

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Aidan Gibbons

Written by Aidan Gibbons

Journalist/Editor-in-Chief of Cultaholic.com Twitter: @theaidangibbons