CURRENTLY ANNOUNCED: TENILLE DASHWOOD VS BEA PRIESTLEY
SPW Southern Rumble – ‘History in the making’
New Zealand has a rich history of Professional Wrestling. On The Mat. Steve Rickard. The Bushwhackers.
But the year is 2018, we are SPW, and we are making our own history.
We have been creating a buzz, and that buzz is about to become a big bang when we come to the ILT Stadium Southland for the first time ever on Saturday 14th July!
Come and witness ‘Wrestling on the Edge of the World’ as we bring to you hard hitting, fast paced, strong style Pro Wrestling that is taking the world by storm!
We will be announcing huge international stars that cannot wait to come and see what the fuss is all about, as well as our own homegrown stars that are making all the noise.
The SPW New Zealand Heavyweight Championship and the SPW New Zealand Tag Team Championships will be on the line, as well as a 20 Man over the top Southern Rumble where ‘there can only be one’ winner, earning themselves a guaranteed shot at the SPW New Zealand Heavyweight Championship.
Champions will be crowned, new stars will emerge, and history will be made.
Stay tuned to the website and our Social Media channels for further announcements on ticket sales and talent appearing or sign up to our Mailing List to be the first to know, CLICK HERE
For any media enquiries please contact email@example.com. Thank you.
SPW’s ‘Debut Show in Invercargill’ Review By Lewis Borsje-Clark
Hi everyone. Welcome to my first article here on SPW’s official website. My name is Lewis and I’m a university post-graduate with a passion for pro-wrestling. I used to obsessively watch WWE as a kid, though I lost interest around when I started high school. It wasn’t until I was in university that I discovered there was wrestling outside of WWE. I came across New Japan Pro Wrestling’s ‘Wrestle Kingdom 9’ show and was shocked with its unique style. I followed NJPW consistently for the rest of the year and by the start of 2016 I was totally hooked on pro-wrestling all over again. I started branching out to other promotions as well, especially the independent scene. Throughout the US, the UK, Canada, Japan, Germany, and Australia there were plenty of other promotions. Many were smaller, but still fantastic, and with their own impressive talent.
That brings me down to Invercargill with Southern Pro-Wrestling. I first heard about SPW through their 2017 documentary which detailed the promotion’s creation. The entire company seemed really down to earth. Everyone from the wrestlers to the management team appeared very dedicated to the pro-wrestling craft and determined to give fans a worthwhile show. I decided to take a shot in the dark and reach out to SPW to see whether they were interested in some written work to be hosted on their site. The team was very nice, and after a few discussions we agreed to the formulation of my current project. Starting with my first review here, I shall provide an overview of every show on SPW’s VOD service.
My goal with these reviews is to catch new or out-of-date fans up to speed with the current SPW product. Not everyone is able to dedicate their time to watching every SPW show, but many still want to get the most out of any SPW they watch or attend. My reviews shall therefore comprehensively recap each SPW show and analyse both the matches and the long-term progression of the wrestlers and their stories. If the matches and events I describe pique your interest then you should definitely take that as a cue to get SPW’s VOD service yourself and get the proper pro-wrestling experience.
My journey through the SPW catalogue begins with the debut show at the Invercargill Working Men’s Club in August 2015.
Travis Banks vs Johnny Idol
The opening match was extremely interesting to watch from the perspective of 2018, as it showed the early work of two future international stars. Travis Banks would go on to become the current world champion of the popular British promotion PROGRESS, while Johnny Idol would go on to wrestle in the world famous Mexican promotion CMLL. It is always interesting to see the work of a modern day star before their big break, so to get to see the early work of two stars is even better.
Banks seemed determined to ensure that that SPW’s debut show get off to a terrible start. He announced himself in the building by professing a very ardent pro-Auckland attitude. Despite his totally rude nature, I found Banks incredibly entertaining. The way he riled up the innocent and unexpecting audience was very funny for how unexpected it was. This was clearly not the first time Banks had a room full of people heckling him. His berating of the crowd was so absurd that I couldn’t help but laugh. “I’ll come out there and punch you, little boy,” threatened Banks to a child.
Idol, noticing Banks’ impolite impression, decided to instead play up to the crowd. Unsurprisingly, he was received much more warmly. Banks became very insecure with this contrast in appreciation. The damage was already done though, as his attempts to then impress the crowd were met with the same distaste that he himself had introduced.
As the match officially began Idol soon showed that Banks may have been overcompensating with all his bravado. After a series of strikes, a few throws, and one big suplex Banks was loudly wailing and groaning. He no longer seemed as superior as he had made himself out to be. Banks would soon have to resort to some underhanded tactics to gain control. These tactics started with knocking Idol on the top rope, causing him to land crotch-first on the turnbuckle pad. Banks followed this up with some excessively stiff abdomen kicks and even some childish hair pulling. Getting caught up in this short burst of success Banks’ showmanship soon returned. He went back to mocking Idol and arrogantly acting as if there was no way Idol could continue the match, seen via Banks’ half-hearted pin attempts.
After finding out that Idol was no pushover Banks realised he would have to put some real effort in, and thus he proved to have some genuine wrestling skills in the process. He intelligently avoided Idol’s big moonsault and managed to hit an impressive lariat and fisherman buster combo for a very close near fall. Banks would get too excited off of this momentum though, as he then went for a top rope crossbody splash only for Idol to counter with a quick ace crusher out of nowhere, a la Randy Orton. Idol looked to have been running on pure instinct in that moment. The weakened and stunned Banks lay on the canvas as Idol once again attempted his moonsault. This time it connected, and Idol picked up the pin fall for the victory.
Marcus Kool Confronts T-Rex
Following this opener the audience was then treated to a preview of the main event match between Marcus Kool and T-Rex. What began as a pleasant speech from T-Rex in which he thanked the local fans for coming out to support SPW’s debut show soon turned into a heated encounter as Kool interrupted and made his way to the ring. Kool began hurling insults at the Invercargill crowd and they tossed them right back. Kool was a proud Englishman, boastfully flaunting his English attire and football hooligan personality. His energy wouldn’t give out, as he then turned his attention towards the man in the ring. Kool unloaded on T-Rex, insulting his hometown of Invercargill and promising to not only defeat him in the main event but also embarrass him.
Kool had already aggravated the crowd enough, but then he further demonized himself as he feigned de-escalating the situation and leaving the ring before instead flooring the unprepared T-Rex with his “Kool Intentions” superkick. Kool had set a very bitter tone, and T-Rex would have wait until the end of the night for a chance at revenge.
James Shaw vs Charlie Roberts
In the next match we saw another brash and outspoken performer in Charlie Roberts up against the much more jovial James Shaw. Roberts continued the night’s trend of wrestlers getting into spats with the crowd while gloating about their skills. Almost a complete opposite to Roberts, Shaw managed to entice the crowd to his side as he tossed lollies out and splashed Roberts with water. Roberts’ mood changed immediately.
Shaw was quite the personality. At one point he not only donned the referee’s uniform but also tried to force the poor man to wrestle in his spot. After masquerading as the referee for a while Shaw then went about whipping Roberts with the referee’s shirt and riding him like a horse, much to the audience’s appreciation. Eventually the poor, weeping referee was reclothed, and the Shaw vs Roberts bout would properly begin.
Roberts was understandably enraged after Shaw’s many outrageous actions and his performance reflected that. He landed quite a lot of stiff strikes and kicks to Shaw’s abdomen and back, all while aggressively mocking Shaw for how he could no longer perform his jokes and gags. Shaw wasn’t done though. He managed to gain control quite a few times in the match despite Roberts viciousness, and would often take time to appeal to the crowd with his trademark absurdity. Shaw showed his more serious and capable side too though, as he managed to escape most of Roberts’ submission holds and even withstood a large number of Roberts’ strikes by simply using his own willpower and the crowd’s support to power through them.
I must mention that at one point in the match Shaw let out the most unexpected and hilarious line of the entire show: “whooooo wants me to KILL HIM?”. This rather dark line was very amusing when looking at the colourfully clad man it came from. Shaw was very lighthearted but outside of all the fun and games he definitely still took matters seriously. Perhaps too seriously, as this line may have implied. “Proclaiming murder here in Invercargill!”, quipped the commentators in response.
After throwing Shaw to the outside Roberts teased performing a top rope move. The crowd got quite excited to see such a potentially athletic display, even if they hated the guy up until this point. Roberts gestured for the crowd to get hyped up for his dive before instead jumping down and giving the crowd another, less friendly gesture. The crowd reacted to this tease with far
greater booes than before. They definitely wouldn’t give him even the slightest amount of support after that.
Following on from some of Shaw’s humorous evasion tactics he managed to prop Roberts up across his shoulders. We would never know what Shaw intended to do from this position however, as Roberts quickly clawed at Shaw’s eyes and hit his bewildered opponent with a crucifix powerbomb named the ‘24 Carat Destiny’ before pinning him.
Roberts was very satisfied with his performance. He went back to gloating towards the crowd and insulting them during his exit. Sadly for Roberts he did not manage his time efficiently, as Shaw managed to regain consciousness and charged after him so as to get the last laugh.
Shane Sinclair vs Aaron Henry
This match was particularly exciting for me because it featured the current NJPW trainee Aaron Henry, better known as ‘Henare’ or, more recently, ‘Toa Henare’.
Henry might have been the star of the show. He came out extremely hyped up and that attitude lasted all match long, Whether he was screaming or gritting his teeth he always looked full to the brim with energy. He was also a very nationalistic figure. He performed a fantastic one-man haka during his entrance, had the New Zealand Silver Fern on both his boots, and even passed a replica New Zealand flag out to a young fan. A proud kiwi and a keen wrestler; what more could a New Zealand crowd want?
It also helped that Henry was up against Sinclair, a very proud and obnoxious vegan.
Sinclair would profess his vegan beliefs crowd all match-long, no matter how he faring. When finding success he would combatively opine with lines such as “Huh? What do you think of my vegan lifestyle NOW, huh?”. Even when half conscious after taking a real beating he could still muster up the strength to meekly explain to the audience that his vegan lifestyle meant he was better than them. The choice of who to cheer for was rather straightforward. Everyone wanted to see the plant-based-diet aficionado get embarrassed, but things would not be so simple.
The majority of the match would focus around Henry’s leg. After Henry missed a big boot in the corner his leg was left stuck up over the top rope. Sinclair intelligently took that opportunity to attack the unguarded limb. Say what you want about Sinclair’s diet and his forceful promotion of it, but he proved himself to be a very fine wrestler with how efficiently he worked over Henry’s leg. The hamstring, quad, and heel were all given equal attention as Sinclair went about destroying the entirety of Henry’s leg with various strikes and holds. Henry did his best to fight on but he was clearly incapacitated: his movement was severely reduced and his whole body was heavily off-balanced. Henry would still perform valiantly despite his injury, delivering some nice sharp chops, a big sunset flip pin attempt, and a very athletic one-legged dropkick.
Henry looked like a total star to be able to deliver so much offence in spite of his impaired leg. At one point it looked like the match was over as Henry managed to counter another of Sinclair’s heel hooks into a rear naked choke. This led to the contentious match finish, however. Sinclair was unable to escape Henry’s rear naked choke but he did manage to roll back over Henry towards the ropes. Sinclair would use the ropes added pressure for an illegal but ultimately successful pinfall, though not without first being choked conscious. The referee totally missed Sinclair’s legs on the ropes because of his position and angle, and thus Sinclair escaped with the victory. Henry, unaware of the situation, assumed he had won the match by referee stoppage with his choke. His ecstatic celebrations were very quickly cut short as the referee explained, ironically enough, that the unconscious Sinclair was the official victor.
Upon gaining consciousness Sinclair happily accepted his cheap victory and ordered Henry out of his ring. This was the last straw for Henry, as he then left Sinclair sleeping on the canvas for a second time that night after hitting a big superman punch. He then covered Sinclair and counted his own 3-count pinfall for a symbolic victory, as if to prove that he was the superior wrestler all-along.
T-Rex vs Marcus Kool
Finally the time had come for the main event: the hometown hero against the English hooligan.
Unlike earlier in the night Kool was a lot more panicked when facing T-Rex this time around. Back during their confrontation Kool was a lot more provocative because he could tell that T-Rex would not want to start a fight, especially not before their officially scheduled match. That sense of security gave Kool the confidence to poke and prod T-Rex. It was a different story once face to face in a match, though. It was all a matter of fair sport here. T-Rex was prepared now and could place his hands on Kool without any sense of guilt, and Kool was clearly terrified at this reality.
Kool went for his best option: the superkick that had previously floored T-Rex. However, with T-Rex’s attention now totally undivided, alongside Kool’s jitters likely giving away his movements, T-Rex easily caught Kool’s leg mid-move and sent him crashing to the mat. Kool began to really panic. His element of surprise was gone. He tried to compensate for his panic by upping his aggression, but this led to recklessness as T-Rex calmly read his movements and effortlessly overpowered him.
After a period of T-Rex’s domination Kool managed to gain the upperhand after guillotining T-Rex over the top rope and raking his eyes. With T-Rex trying to recover from the illegal attacks to his throat and eyes Kool finally hit his superkick. He went for the cover but failed as T-Rex kicked out just before the 3 count. Kool was second-guessing himself again, perhaps realising that his signature move was only so effective earlier in the night because T-Rex wasn’t properly in his wrestling-mode.
He was now though, and wouldn’t go down as easily as before. Kool would put his hooligan ways to use as he then unleashed some very stiff football kicks into T-Rex’s back, abdomen, and arms. He would also perform some admittedly impressive acrobatic feats including a frankensteiner and a crossbody splash. He may have played dirty but he definitely wasn’t totally reliant on such methods. After sustaining so much offence T-Rex then rallied himself together and entered into a hulk-up mode. More aggressive than ever, he began to unleash a series of vicious tackles and perform some heavy-impact power moves.
Kool was given a blessing in disguise as he accidentally knocked the ref unconscious after colliding with him. T-Rex managed to lay Kool out with a powerbomb immediately afterwards, but without a conscious referee he couldn’t get an official pinfall to win the match. Kool was totally dazed, unable to move. T-Rex attempted to force Kool to his feet for a second powerbomb but Kool managed to low-blow T-Rex instead. A totally immoral and illegal act, but the referee was down and unable to officiate, so nothing could be done about it. The referee gained consciousness just in time for Kool to then hit T-Rex with an inverted facebuster and go for a pinfall. It looked as if the hooligan was sadly going to win via hooligan-means. Luckily the ref was still very dazed from the clash, leading to a slow pinfall count that gave T-Rex just enough time to miraculously kick out.
Kool was so shocked at T-Rex’s survival that he angrily knocked the dazed referee back down as if it was his fault. With the referee once again attempting to recover from a collision the match was once again without any regulations. Kool managed to knock T-Rex’s lights out with a big whack from his football cleats but, extraordinarily, T-Rex managed to kick out of Kool’s follow-up pinfall yet again. Kool was absolutely livid, unsure if there was anything else he could possibly do. Just as had been the case at the start of the match, Kool once again let his emotions get the better of him. He loudly proclaimed his intention to deliver a pin-point penalty kick to the temple of the “fat Kiwi”, but T-Rex would manage to sidestep the attack just in time.
Kool, caught off guard by T-Rex’s surprising energy and agility, then charged T-Rex as a last-ditch effort. He would pay dearly for this though, as T-Rex managed to use Kool’s own momentum to throw him up into the air and hit him with the powerbomb once again. With the referee in place and the absence of any other possible hijinks, T-Rex covered Kool and got the pinfall for the win. He had finally overcome the hooligan, but if the stare down and aggressive handshake between the two during the post-match was anything to go by then it would appear that they were not done with each other just yet.
This was a very impressive first effort from SPW. A lot of work was made on the production’s technical end, resulting in a comfortable viewing experience. Although there were quite a few wrestlers -- Banks, Roberts, Sinclair, and Kool -- who were at stark odds with the crowd they still managed to elicit big reactions.
The crowd became invested in these wrestlers, desperate to see them punished for their unsportsmanlike behaviour. This led to the more admirable performers of the night -- Idol, Shaw, Henry, and T-Rex -- getting strong crowd support behind them as they attempted to humble their villainous opponents. No two wrestlers were the same, with each relying on a different mixture of power, antagonism, intuition, and cunning.
Ignoring moral judgements, every athlete who stepped into that ring proved to be a capable professional wrestler, and I look forward to seeing them on future SPW shows.
Thanks very much for taking the time to read my first SPW review. Hopefully you found it insightful or useful in some way, and I hope you’ll anticipate my future SPW reviews as well.
ON SALE: 3rd Jan 2018 at 10am
ONCE IN A LIFETIME. ONE OF THE BEST IN THE WORLD. LIMITED SEATS.
Are we crazy? Possibly…
International Superstar the ‘Aerial Assassin’ Will Ospreay returns to SPW on Thursday 15th February for a ONE NIGHT ONLY appearance in New Zealand!
Here is the kicker. We only have 150 seats. Which means we are only able to sell 150 tickets. This is a crazy EXCLUSIVE intimate event where you can watch one of the best in the world perform up close and personal.
Unfamiliar with Fight Nights? Don't worry, it's awesome, and fun, click here for more info.
Official Will Ospreay merchandise will be available as well as the opportunity for a personal meet and greet.
SPW Talent also scheduled to appear.
DATE & TIME:
Thursday 15th February. Doors open 7pm. Show starts at 7.30pm
A Thursday!? Yup, it’s Will Ospreay! Take it or leave it…
SPW Fight Nights Proving Ground (The Barracks, Invercargill) Map below...
PRICE AND NEED TO KNOW:
We listened to your feedback…here is everything you need to know!
Due to ticket demand and your support we have sold out previous Live Events! So we want to make ticketing purchases as easy as possible for YOU to get the best seating available. We are limited to 500 tickets at our venue, so you need to get in quick, and here is how.
SEATING MAP - INVERCARGILL ONLY
Thanks to Eventfinda NZ, when tickets go on sale you will now be able to PICK and CHOOSE which seats you would like to reserve, this only applies for the first 4 rows and then the rest is General Admission.
PRE-SALE AND GENERAL SALE
We will have a Pre-Sale password available for all subscribers to our Newsletter so our loyal fans have first access to seating when the Pre-Sale goes live.
General Sale will go live a week later for whatever tickets remain via Eventfinda NZ.
Not on our newsletter? CLICK HERE
We are happy to say that General Admission prices will remain the same, however there is a very slight price increase on 1st – 4th row to help us continue to bring top entertainment at an affordable price.
Adult (Over 16) - $15
Child (Under 16) - $10
4th Row reserved - $17.50
3rd Row reserved - $17.50
2nd Row reserved - $20
1st Row reserved - $22.50
*Eventfinda NZ fees may apply
These prices will apply for all 3 shows at the Corinthian Centre at the Invercargill Working Men's club in 2018.
Southern Rumble ticketing information to be released shortly.
FIGHT FOR GOLD TICKET SALES
Pre Sale goes live on Friday 15th Dec at 10am
General sale goes live on Monday 18th Dec at 10am
FAQ’s (Regularly Updated)
Is there an Adult/Child cost for the reserved row seats?
No, sorry, these will be one standard price
Will you ever do a season pass?
We are looking into it, but it is proving challenging, we will update you when/if this is a possibility
Is General Admission seating or standing?
All GA tickets are seated, but they will not be allocated, so it will be first come first serve for best location
Are refunds available if we can no longer make it?
On a case by case basis, yes, for any refund issues please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org
David Dunn from SPW Insider caught up with the 'Kiwi Buzzsaw' Travis Banks following his huge PROGRESS Wrestling World Title win!
Travis Banks has been living in the UK for just over 2 years now since moving away from New Zealand to make a bigger name for himself, and he's not doing too bad!
Credits and Thank You (Click for more inf0)
Fight Club Pro
Melbourne City Wrestling
Rob Brazier Photography
The Ringside Perspective
Cory Lockwood Photography
Interview below, enjoy!
SPW Insider: How does it feel to finally capture the PROGRESS Wrestling Championship?
Travis Banks: It still feels pretty surreal. I don’t think I ever have a chance to take in any of my success. I’m always so very busy. I never really get a chance to let things sink in and see what I’ve accomplished. At the moment it’s still pretty normal, so to speak, but it feels great. Eight years of hard work culminated in one of the biggest UK shows to date, and to have my parents celebrate in the ring was quite a wonderful experience. I’m very grateful and very fortunate to have so many supportive fans around the world.
SPW Insider: What was it like wrestling WWE United Kingdom Champion Pete Dunne for the title, considering his status in the industry and your shared history together?
Travis Banks: I guess most people don’t know the history that me and Pete actually have. In 2013 I met him and Mark Andrews in a little company called St Louis Anarchy when I was in America training with Davey Richards.
At the time I didn’t realise how much those two would mean to my career in the long run. They were just cool dudes, we got along, I kept in contact, and when I got here [the UK] both Pete and Mark stuck their necks out for me and helped me get connections and bookings around the place. So it’s funny to have that little titbit of history with Pete and then from there me and him had a program for the Fight Club Pro title, almost mirroring the Alexandra Palace thing in PROGRESS.
I won a tournament, the Infinity tournament, and went on to take the title. Same thing with PROGRESS, I won the Super Strong Style 16 and then went on to take the title from Pete. It seems our fates are sort of sealed in these history making moments which I hope repeats in the future.
But there’s no doubt Pete is the best, and I’ve learned so much about pro wrestling from Pete Dunne. He’s a mad genius when it comes to wrestling. As much as the storylines suggest we hate each I actually have the most respect for him out of everybody in the business.
SPW Insider: In what was an amazing moment, your parents had travelled over all the way from New Zealand to watch you capture the title in front of 2000 people. What did that mean to you?
Travis Banks: Having my family there for my biggest win to date... I think it goes to show how supportive they’ve been from the very start. They were at my very first match at Heretaunga Hellfire for WPW where I faced The Nerd. They were there for both my NZ title wins, and they’ve been supportive both financially, emotionally, and it’s quite surreal to see them over here taking in and experiencing PROGRESS.
They both found it quite surreal and it was a little bit different to what they were used to in New Zealand. I think the last time might have been a crowd of 200, and then to see a crowd of 2000 and I was in the main event winning the PROGRESS world title, I don’t think they can kind of fathom the experience but they’re both very proud.
SPW Insider: Do you miss your friends and family from back home in New Zealand? How are you adapting to life in the UK?
Travis Banks: My parents knew from the beginning that I was in this all or nothing, and for eight years – coming up nine – it’s been this way ever since. With social media now it’s easier to keep in touch with friends. I do miss them from time to time – I miss my parents most – but they all understand the importance of my journey and what I’m doing and how hard I need to push and sacrifice. I’m very fortunate having a circle of friends that are so understanding of what I do and I can’t always be there for them even though I’d like to be.
The UK life, it’s pretty simple. Food’s a lot cheaper, living’s a lot cheaper, and it’s just home now. I can’t believe it’s been two years, it only felt like yesterday I got off that plane. I’ve done a lot though, it honestly feels like it’s been six years because of all the things I’ve done. I think I counted the other day, since I’ve been here I’ve had 193 matches if I remember correctly, which is way more than I could have possibly had still down in New Zealand and Australia.
SPW Insider: You call yourself ‘The Kiwi Buzzsaw’ and have Kiwi-themed wrestling gear. Is it important for you to represent New Zealand?
Travis Banks: At first I didn’t set out to be so pro-New Zealand with everything about me but it has come so organically. ‘The Kiwi Buzzsaw’ came from Vlad, the ring announcer from CHIKARA. He called me it one day and I just ran with it. Air New Zealand, the Kiwi Crusher, Slice of Heaven, they all just kinda came about organically and I wasn’t thinking pro-New Zealand at the time, I was just thinking, ‘What’s something New Zealand?’ But as time goes on I do realise how important it is for me to represent New Zealand, fly that flag and hopefully get eyes to the New Zealand scene. I’d really like to help the territory and show the world how good New Zealanders – even though we’re tucked away in the corner of the world – can be.
SPW Insider: You’re scheduled to be part of Melbourne City Wrestling’s anniversary event, Seven, in October. Are you excited to return to MCW?
Travis Banks: MCW was one of the promotions that restored my fire to get out and go places. This is nothing to do with New Zealand, this is my own personal mindset at the time , I was feeling very stale, I wasn’t feeling challenged at the time with my wrestling. When I took the bookings for MCW and I got to wrestle Dowie James, we had such a killer match both times it really reignited the flame and gave me the confidence that I could go back overseas. After everything I’ve done, PROGRESS World Champion, PWG, now I get to go back and show them this is what I’ve become, and it was partly to do with you guys. It’s such a good experience, a good thing for me, and I can go back and say thank-you and do a good job for them in that regard.
SPW Insider: You were on SPW’s first ever show in a match against current CMLL star Johnny Idol. It was the opening match of the night so such an important part of SPW’s history and a big reason everyone attending the show stuck around and became fans. Have you been keeping an eye on SPW’s growth since you left?
Travis Banks: As far as New Zealand wrestling has gone, SPW is pretty much the only promotion I’ve been keeping up-to-date with. I remember that first show, being so excited that there was a new product with so much life to it, and there was so much enthusiasm from Marc and Troy that I couldn’t help but get excited. I know Johnny Idol was the same way. And to do that match, being the opening match on the first ever SPW show and really setting the bar – and since then knowing that some of the wrestlers watched that and wanted to become wrestlers themselves on SPW, is lovely to hear really. I’m really happy with the way SPW’s going and how serious they’re taking the promotion.
I know Marc takes a lot of care and he wants to do everything right and build his company up right. If I could come back and work SPW that would be amazing because he was actually one of the most instrumental guys in me getting a lot of connections over here in the UK. If I could come back and do another favour for him I’d do it in a heartbeat.
SPW Insider: What advice do you have for aspiring wrestlers who might want to follow in your footsteps?
Travis Banks: I have a whole bunch of advice for aspiring wrestlers because I have been giving it out to a whole bunch of Australian wrestlers that have been coming to the UK recently to come try make careers for themselves.
Firstly, don’t be afraid to spend money and travel to get better experience. But when you travel, try and base yourself somewhere for a long period of time and work there – try not to jump around too much because it ends up rather costly.
Don’t get a cheap trainer either. Go somewhere decent, make sure they’re a good trainer and they’ve done things and they’ve got good credentials.
Secondly – and these are just very general things, but I think they apply in life as well – have a good attitude. I can’t stress enough how important it is to have a good attitude in this business. So many people get ahead by having a good attitude. They don’t have to be the best wrestler, they don’t have to be the most skilled, but they just have to be a decent person and people give them opportunities.
Work hard, I can't stress this enough. In any aspect of wrestling, if you want to be the best, you have to work hard at it, whether it be promos, drills, basics, whatever it is, whether it’s gear, the way you look, work hard at every aspect and the opportunities will present themselves.
Go out and make connections. Say hello to everyone. Put up the ring, take down the ring, shake hands with everyone, get to know everyone, be a friend, be a good person. Because at the end of the day people can put you places.
A classic example of this is what we said at the start of this interview. I met Pete Dunne and I didn’t think anything of him at the time, I just thought he’s a good person, I’ll be friends with him, and now look, four years later... Pete was one of the most integral parts of my wrestling career all because I was his friend and a decent person. Be good to everybody, help out, that’s such easy cliched advice – be a good person, work hard, make connections – but they’re cliches for a reason because everyone stresses them so much.
Insider news, interviews, latest updates, blogs, you are going to find all of it in here!