IMPACT Wrestling unveiled its talent lineup for the UK Invasion Tour on Sept 18, 2023, which marks its first UK tour in eight years. Scheduled venues include Glasgow on October 26th, Newcastle on October 27th, and Coventry on October 28th and 29th.
The wrestling events showcased a plethora of exceptionally skilled wrestlers, including Trinity, Alex Shelley, Josh Alexander, Deonna Purrazzo, Eric Young, Rhino, Jordynne Grace, Brian Myers, Moose, Gisele Shaw, Grado, Joe Hendry, Rich Swann, Chris Sabin, Eddie Edwards, Frankie Kazarian, Leon Slater, and SUBCULTURE. Additionally, IMPACT Hall of Famer Gail Kim will be making a special guest appearance on both nights.
“The UK has always felt like a second home to me – and a lot of huge matches and milestones have happened for both me and IMPACT Wrestling there. I can’t wait to be part of the UK Invasion Tour… as we bring our special brand of pro wrestling to some of the best fans in the world.”- TNA Legend\Grand Slam Champion Eric Young
Shelley was initially scheduled to defend his title, but due to unforeseen circumstances, he could not participate in Friday and Saturday’s shows during the UK Tour. It was unclear whether he will recover in time to compete on Sunday.
Later, we were advised that Alex Shelley would be pulled due to a minor injury but he will be able to recover in time for his upcoming title defense with the world title at Hard to Kill and December’s event Final Resolution.
On the third evening of Impact Wrestling’s UK visit, they showed up in Coventry for the first of two shows at the conventional home of WrestleCarnival. Grado has returned to IMPACT Wrestling for their UK tour, marking his first appearance since 2018. The crowd was very excited and receptive to the return of Grando. During the match, Grado tried to end it with his signature chokeslam, but Myers interrupted his attempt. After eventually completing the chokeslam, Grado headed towards the corner to prepare for his superkick. Unfortunately, Myers expected this move and quickly intervened, spinning Grado around and bouncing him off the ropes before delivering a powerful lariat that led to Myers’ victory.
The Tour also included known UK talents Giselle Shaw and Joe Hendry.
Hendry would face Edwards. The match featuring Joe Hendry and Edwards was a spectacle of several notable moments. One such moment was when Hendry demonstrated his strength by catching Edwards in mid-air during a crossbody attempt and forcefully slamming him onto the mat. Edwards responded with a Blue Thunder Bomb and tried to follow it up with a knee strike, yet Hendry countered with a well-timed clothesline. The two wrestlers continued to exchange blows until Edwards landed a powerbomb and ultimately secured the win with a devastating Boston Knee Party.
During the UK Invasion Tour Hendry would also settle his score with Cultaholic’s Simon Miller. Like Simon Miller, Shaw would not have the UK crowd on her side as she faces Trinity.
Shaw initiates the match with an aggressive attack, cornering Trinity. The competitors exchange kicks to the head, leading to Trinity executing a bulldog off the ropes for her first near fall. Despite Trinity’s offense, Shaw regains control, delivering a backbreaker and bulldog of her own. Trinity retaliated with a ‘rear view’ butt bump, trying to apply the Starstruck submission hold but couldn’t exert enough force. Despite the loss, Shaw’s expression hinted at the continuation of this intense rivalry.
Impact faithful fan favorite, Subculture would appear on the UK Tour. Subculture would face Eric Young & Josh Alexander vs Chris Sabin & Frankie Kazarian. During the match, the Walking Weapon effectively executed a German suplex on all opponents, while Young narrowly managed to evade the maneuver. Subculture retained control of the ring and confronted their opponents with a running knee and Frankensteiner combination. However, their efforts were thwarted by outside interference. However, Young and Alexander emerged victorious by pushing Sabin and Kaz to the floor and delivering simultaneous piledrivers on Subculture.
Harley Hudson recently emerged as the victor in the Gut Check tryout held in Coventry, which helped secure a contract with IMPACT Wrestling. President Scott D’Amore of TNA has signed a long-term contract with Leon Slater, a 19-year-old UK sensation.
The overall UK Invasion tour was a success and provided several opportunities for Brit wrestling talent to showcase their abilities. Will Ospreay would make his return to the promotion during this tour, since 2016. He would face Eddie Edwards for the first time ever. He would declare victory with his signature move, Hidden Blade.
Post-match, Ospreay takes the mic to show some love to the crowd. With a heart full of gratitude, he gives a big shout-out to TNA for being a massive source of inspiration for him and fellow wrestlers. Ospreay declares his never-ending loyalty to TNA, no matter what twists or turns the future holds.
Impact Wrestling will be returning to its roots and name TNA Wrestling. After hopping across the pond for a promotional tour, it’s official: British wrestling fans are still enamored with their grappling heroes! Also, it confirms that wrestling continues to hold a special place in the hearts of British audiences.
These are a few of the best matches that we recommend everyone to check out. Turning Point is also available.
For some additional matches throughout the history of TNA.
All matches are now available on Impact Wrestling’s ultimate insiders subscription on YouTube.