Manami Toyota is a 22-year veteran who is considered the greatest female wrestler of all-time. She has won more titles than virtually any other woman and holds the women’s record for most Wrestling Observer Newsletter 5 Star Matches with a whopping 11. She debuted in August 1987 at age 16, then broke through in May 1989 as part of the Tokyo Sweethearts with Mima Shimoda. 6 months later she won her first title, the AJW Championship, and reigned for 10 months before losing it. A short All-Pacific Championship reign followed not long after this. In 1991 & 1992 she teamed and feuded with Toshiyo Yamada, winning the UWA Women’s Tag Team Championship together before going at it in a hair vs. hair match in 1992, won by Toyota, although she did not want Yamada to get her head shaved as the loser (Yamada insisted it happen). They would continue as a team and win the WWWA Tag Team Title followed by Toyota beating Kyoko Inoue for the IWA Singles Championship and reigning for over 3 years before losing the title.
On November 28, 1998, Toyota faced the legendary Chigusa Nagayo in a one-time-only legends bout that saw arguably the two best female wrestlers ever go at it. Toyota lost. Soon afterwards she followed Aja Kong to Nagayo’s GAEA JAPAN promotion, where from 2002-2004 she feuded with Yamada and Dynamite Kansai.
After her 20th anniversary tribute show in August 2007, where she wrestled in every match, she went on hiatus but returned to action in 2008. On a Wrestling Observer poll taken on March 20, 2009, Toyota was voted as the greatest female wrestler of all time, garnering a whopping 31% of the voting. She also is a member of the Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall Of Fame, inducted in 2002. Today she still competes on occasion mainly on special themed events, most recently appearing in LLPW and OZ Academy as part of tributes to legends such as Plum Mariko. In late 2009 she began competing slightly more frequently and added yet another title to her career resume-in September 2009 she won the OZ Academy Openweight Championship for the first time, showing no real signs of slowing down in the ring. Today she primarily competes in OZ Academy but occasionally appears elsewhere.
Toyota will make her first-ever appearance in the US in September 2010, working 2 dates for the indy promotion CHIKARA.
Stats & info:
Weight: 150 pounds/68 kg
Experience: 22 years
Finishing move: Japanese Ocean Queen Bee Bomb
Current affiliation: Independent/Freelancer, but primarily appearing in OZ Academy
1-time AJW Champion
2-time All-Pacific Champion
1-time IWA World Women’s Champion
4-time WWWA World Champion
3-time WWWA World Tag Team Champion
1-time AAAW Singles Champion
1-time AAAW Tag Team Champion
1-time JWP Openweight Champion
1-time JWP Tag Team Champion
1-time UWA World Tag Team Champion
1-time OZ Academy Openweight Champion
1-time OZ Academy Tag Team Champion
1990, 1995, 1998, 1999 Japan Grand Prix
1993, 1994, 1996, 1999, 2001 Tag League-The Best
2006 JWP Openweight Challenger Title League
11 Wrestling Observer Newsletter 5 Star Matches
1993 Wrestling Observer Newsletter Match Of The Year (with Toshiyo Yamada vs. Dynamite Kansai & Mayumi Ozaki)
1995 Wrestling Observer Newsletter Match Of The Year (vs. Kyoko Inoue)
1995 Wrestling Observer Newsletter Most Outstanding Wrestler
1995 Wrestling Observer Newsletter Readers’ Favorite Wrestler
Inducted Into Wrestling Observer Newsletter Hall Of Fame in 2002
Official website (Japanese):