Dump Matsumoto

dumpmatsumoto01Dump Matsumoto was a 8-year veteran of joshi puroresu and one of the top female wrestlers in the 1980s. Competing in All-Japan Women as the longtime leader of the stable Gokuaku Domei—which included Crane Yu, Condor Saito and Bull Nakano—she was one of the main rivals of the popular tag team Crush Gals. Their long running feud would become extremely popular in Japan during the 1980s, with their televised matches resulting in some of the highest rated in Japanese television as well as the promotion regularly selling out arenas.

Making her debut in 1980, within three years she defeated Lioness Asuka for the AJW Championship on January 8 and held the title for almost six months before losing the title back to Asuka on June 1, 1983. During her feud with the Crush Gals, she would often team with Bull Nakano and Crane Yu, who Matsumoto teamed with to defeat Lioness Asuka and Chigusa Nagayo for the WWWA Tag Team title on February 25, 1985 although the two were forced to vacate the title two months later following Yu’s retirement. She later made an unsuccessful bid for the vacant WWWA World Heavyweight Championship losing to Devil Masami on December 12, 1985. She later lost to rival Chigusa Nagayo for the All Pacific Championship in Tokyo, Japan on April 5, 1986.
In early 1986 she made a brief appearance in WWF/E, teaming with Bull Nakano as The Devils Of Japan. They competed in 2 matches in March ’86 before returning to Japan. Once back in Japan, Matsumoto resumed her feud with the Crush Gals teaming with Bull Nakano to defeat Lioness Asuka and Kazue Nagahori (substituting for an injured Chigusa Nagayo) for the WWWA Tag Team title on August 23, 1986 however the two would eventually be forced to vacate the title the following year. Although Matsumoto officially announced her retirement on February 25, 1988 in which she wrestled the Crush Gals in a tag team match with Yukari Ohmori and then siding against her partner by switching with Nagayo against Asuka and Ohmori, she wrestled her final match against Bull Nakano and Condor Saito on February 28. Although officially retired for over 20 years, Matsumoto still makes occasional special appearances on the joshi circuit, most notably an appearance in All-Japan Women in 1998, several appearances in GAEA Japan, a show she produced in late 2007 and even main-eventing a NEO show in November 2009. She also appeared in a number of Japanese films during the late 1980s and early 1990s, most notably portraying the character Bái Yá-Shàn in Ryoichi Ikegami and Kazuo Koike’s Crying Freeman series which includes Crying Freeman 2: Shades of Death, Part 1 (1989), Crying Freeman 3: Shades of Death, Part 2 (1990) and Crying Freeman 5: Abduction in Chinatown (1992). She has also starred in Scorpion Woman Prisoner: Death Threat (1991) and Okoge (1992).
Unfortunately it appears that this Hall Of Fame tale will have a very sad ending. She is dying from a terminal illness diagnosed in summer 2009 and reportedly has been given 3 years to live, which according to doctors means summer 2012. Hopefully she will live longer than that and she even worked a show or two with it but it’s still a sad sight knowing another of the greats of our time is dying in front of us.

Stats & Info:
Real name: Kaoru Matsumoto
Age: 48
Height: 5’4″
Weight: 220 pounds/100 kg
Experience: 8 years
Finishing move: Lariat
Current affiliation: Retired, but makes occasional appearances

Titles won:
1-time AJW Champion
2-time WWWA Tag Team Champion

Other accolades:
Inducted Into All-Japan Women Hall Of Fame In 1998
Inducted Into Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall Of Fame In 1996