Katsuyori Shibata has marked another milestone in his comeback from life-threatening injury to win the ROH Pure Championship at Supercard of Honor.
Shibata, 43, defeated the Blackpool Combat Club’s Wheeler Yuta to lift the title.
— ROH – Ring of Honor Wrestling (@ringofhonor) April 1, 2023
It was once thought that Shibata would never wrestle again.
Following a very physical match with Kazuchika Okada on April 9th, 2017, Shibata collapsed and was hospitalized. He underwent emergency brain surgery to treat a subdural hematoma.
He engaged in limited physicality as part of Bullet Club angles in 2019, but did not wrestle again until 2021, when he took part in a five-minute grappling exhibition with Zack Sabre Jr.
On January 4th, 2022, at Wrestle Kingdom 16, Shibata competed in his first full match since 2017, defeating Ren Narita.
During the November 4th, 2022 episode of AEW Rampage, in his AEW in-ring debut, Shibata was defeated by Orange Cassidy for the AEW All-Atlantic Championship.