Rhea Ripley names the only NXT star that can defeat Io Shirai

Raquel Gonzalez is a rising star on NXT

Rhea Ripley believes that only Raquel Gonzalez can defeat Io Shirai

WWE Superstar Rhea Ripley has claimed that only Raquel Gonzalez has what it takes to down current NXT Women’s Champion Io Shirai.

Io Shirai has been the reigning Women’s Champion on NXT since June last year when she defeated Rhea Ripley and Charlotte Flair in a triple-threat match.

Io Shirai has been the NXT Women's Champion since June 2020
Io Shirai has been the NXT Women’s Champion since June 2020

In a reign that has now lasted over 300 days, the “Genius of the Sky” has seen off challenges from a host of top female wrestlers in NXT, including the likes of Tegan Nox, Dakota Kai, Toni Storm, Mercedes Martinez, Candice LeRae and Ripley herself.

Up next for Io is a challenge from the dangerous Raquel Gonzalez. The pair are set to battle it out for the Women’s Championship at NXT TakeOver: Stand & Deliver Special this week.

Ripley backs Gonzalez to beat Shirai

Building up to the much-awaited fight between Gonzalez and Shirai, WWE shared a clip of “Big Mami Cool” going through an intense training session.

Responding to the clip, Ripley, who recently was promoted to the main roster, claimed that if anyone stood a chance of ending Shirai’s title reign, it was Gonzalez.

Ripley knows what she is talking about, having been involved in two brilliant fights with Gonzalez prior to her moving to Monday Night RAW. The Nightmare got the better of Gonzalez at NXT: Halloween Havoc last year.

But Ripley ended up eating a defeat in a hard-hitting Last Woman Standing match against “Big Mami Cool” at New Year’s Evil special in January. It was her last contested match on NXT.

Raquel Gonzalez celebrates at New Year's Evil
Raquel Gonzalez defeated Rhea Ripley in a Last Woman Standing match (WWE)

Gonzalez has enjoyed a strong push of late and has been made to look very strong heading into the big match at Stand & Deliver. Indeed, she got the better of Shirai on more than one occasion on NXT this past week.

Expect fireworks when the two collide in the ring in a few days.

More WWE news

Follow our dedicated WWE page for instant WWE news and updates

Written by Raghav Goudar

imago Images

Top-4 blow for Mourinho – How Tottenham squandered two points against Newcastle United

Matt Hardy AEW

Matt Hardy reveals which character he enjoys playing the most after his latest role in AEW