Preview courtesy of the Piledriver Newsletter and Paul Michael:
Eamon Shrahan (Academy Champion) vs Rajah Ghosh (ranked 1st) – FWA Academy Title Match
After 5 months of desperately fighting to reclaim the Academy Title back from the brutal Stixx, Eamon Shrahan became the first-ever two-time Academy Champion last month at Final Battle. In direct contrast to Stixx, Eamon is determined to defend his Title at each and every show at Buckland. At the show on the 20th August, Eamon’s first challenger to his second reign as Champion is scheduled to be Rajah Ghosh – one of the most experienced and technically proficient wrestlers in the Academy. Rajah earnt his shot in the controversial match with ‘Specialist’ Mark Sloan last month, and will provide a stern first test for Shrahan, who will have to be on his best to prevent his Title reign being over before it’s really begun. Rajah faces a race against time to be fit for the match however, as he has been diagnosed with a torn rotator cuff just over two weeks ago. Eamon is keen to defend his Title at each and every show; whether it is against Ghosh or not remains to be seen.
Max Voltage (ranked 2nd) & Dan Head (ranked 9th) vs Mark Sloan (ranked 3rd) & ?
The Specialist Mark Sloan has stated that he has a new focus; the nature of which is expected to be revealed on August 20th. Sloan is in tag action with an as yet un-named partner against one of the most established, successful, and popular teams in the Academy – Max Voltage and Dan Head. Voltage and Head have forged a spectacular team, and have enjoyed victories over a long list of teams. Regardless of who his partner is, Sloan and his team-mate have their work cut out in this one. One major factor in Sloan’s favour is that wherever he treads, his EntouRAGE are never far behind.
Aviv Maayan (ranked 5th) vs Dan James
The obvious choice for Rookie of the Year 2004, Aviv Maayan, looks to get back to winning ways on August 20th, as he takes on one half of the young, impressive team of Mills & James – Dan James. Whilst James is more used to tagteam competition, he does hold a big singles victory over Max Voltage. Whilst he achieved this in controversial fashion, James has proven himself capable in singles competition. Whilst Aviv is the clear favourite in this match, it would be foolish to write off any Academy talent.
Mark Underwood (ranked 7th) vs Harry Mills
After impressively brutalising and defeating Aviv Maayan last month, Underwood aims to continue his path of destruction up the Academy Rankings against Harry Mills. Mills very rarely competes without Dan James backing him up in his corner, and will have to put on the performance of his career if he is to upset the brutal Underwood. If he is able to pull of the massive victory however, August 20th could be a defining night in the singles career of Harry Mills.
James Tighe (ranked 8th) vs Rishi Ghosh (ranked 10th)
Lady Luck has not been in James Tighe’s corner as of late, as he has suffered controversial losses to both Aviv Maayan and Paul Birchall. The officiating for the outcomes of both matches was extremely questionable, but Tighe has never been one to complain about his luck in the past. On August 20th, Tighe takes on the brash Rishi Ghosh. After marking his return to in-ring action last month with a win over EntouRAGE member Alan Gallagher, Rishi is capable of upsetting the odds – especially if fortune happens to be on his side.
PJ Black vs Alan Gallagher
Since becoming a member of Mark Sloan’s EntouRAGE, Gallagher has enjoyed more success than ever in his short career to date. Having the support, and often interference, of his EntouRAGE allies has made all the difference to Gallagher. Alan’s first match as a member of EntouRAGE came against PJ Black – a match that Alan was able to win with help with his team. Three months later, and PJ gets the chance to avenge his loss to Alan, and snap out of his recent losing streak. Both Black and Gallagher are amongst the most recent additions to the Academy roster, and both are continually looking to elevate themselves to a position where they can challenge the Academy’s elite.
Stixx (ranked 4th) vs El Ligero
In what will be Stixx’s first appearance since losing the Academy Title to Eamon Shrahan, El Ligero could have picked a bad time to make his Academy debut. Stixx is sure to be irate at suffering the loss of his Title – especially given the fact that he is unable to ever obtain a Title match whilst Eamon holds the Title, as per the no-rematch clause signed before their Final Battle match. El Ligero wrestles a high-flying style, and is almost completely unknown in Academy circles. His first impression will have to be an incredible one if he is able to upset the uncontrollable Stixx.
In addition to the listed matches, Paul Birchall will also issue an Open Challenge at the show. It will take a brave man to step into the ring with the gargantuan Birchall; and a very talented one to survive such an encounter.