When I saw that TNA had uploaded this match to their YouTube channel, I knew that I had to watch it immediately. Mandrews, who is best known as Mark Andrews, is a mainstay of TNA’s X-Division and PROGRESS. Together, Andrews and Ospreay are two of the hottest stars in the current British wrestling scene and have competed against each other on multiple occasions. Ospreay also had incredible performances this past WrestleMania weekend, taking on Zack Sabre Jr. at EVOLVE 58, Ricochet at EVOLVE 59, teaming with Tommy End and Marty Scurll in an all-star six-man tag team match at the WWN Supershow Mercury Rising 2016, and challenging Marty Scurll from the PROGRESS World Championship at the WrestleCon Supershow.
There were tons of breathtaking flips, believable near falls, and awe-inspiring aerial maneuvers that seemed to never stop coming. Just as it appeared Ospreay was going to put away his opponent with a one-man Spanish Fly, Mandrews kicked out. Ospreay quickly ascended to the top rope for a corkscrew splash, and Mandrews was able to get his knees up. Following that, Mandrews took out Ospreay with a reverse frankensteiner and shooting star press to pick up the victory. There’s something to be said about the work ethic of both Ospreay and Mandrews in this match. Despite being given a limited amount of time, they were able to work in such a way that accentuated their athletic abilities.
TNA is often criticized, and rightly so, but matches like this present little glimmers of hope for the company. Mandrews vs. Will Ospreay won’t be discussed as a match of the year contender, or even a match of the month contender, but at the very least, it deserves to be seen. It’s baffling to me that TNA had short-term access to such a talented prospect in Ospreay, yet somehow managed to misuse him during his brief stint. Regardless of how I may feel about TNA as a company, this is by far my favorite match that they have produced in 2016. Make no mistake about it; this match may have been under five minutes, but it was an absolute pleasure to watch two of the best highflyers in the world showcase their abilities in front of a hot crowd in Manchester, England. If you would like to watch this match, you can do so here. As always, thanks for reading.