My Thoughts On The All Star Wrestling/ Butlin’s Situation

Sad news for British Wrestling in 2017. It gives me great sadness to announce that Brian Dixon’s All Star Wrestling will not be appearing at the Butlin’s Holiday Camps for the foreseeable future.

The Camps were a great place to work, learn, and refine your craft. It was a great way of gaining further experience. It gave myself and so many other individuals opportunities to work and learn from a successful peer group. Experience is the greatest of teachers, and successes breeds success. That’s a fact of life.

Being around a top notch team of workers to critique and advise you in your early days as a pro was (and still is) crucial to any aspiring wrestler’s development. It chiseled away the rough edges. It refined you in a myriad of different ways.

In the past I’ve worked up to six days a week – all up and down the country on “the camps” for Brian Dixon, and also for the Knight Family’s WAW in the Norfolk area. I will always be thankful to these individuals for the lessons and opportunities that they put my way. The camps could be fun, but at times hard work. You could be wrestling in a different city or county everyday. There were many miles and hours of traveling, but that’s all a part of the job and lifestyle that goes along with it.

At the present time I can not comment further on the situation as I’ve herd many rumours as to what may have happened. One source alleges that another promotion/ promoter may have a deal with Butlin’s but whoever it is will not have the experience to pass on to the next generation and I believe that will compromise many a young inexperienced workers further development. I believe the situation may become a case of the blind leading the blind. It’s bad news for the British wrestling business as a whole.
Personally, I can’t imagine anyone else having the experience, manpower, and finances to make this a success.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Brian for all the opportunities he gave me on the camps, and wish all involved with All Stars luck and success in the future.

Chris.

Ribs On The Road

Pete Evans had this habit of making grunting sounds and non-existent words during a match. Utsah, cha-ho, cha-ho-ah, gianah. It was a bit like watching a karateka do their “kiai” or something like that. He just went on and on doing it – all the way through a mach, like a broken record. It’s strange how you never forget these little things. At the time nobody seemed to even notice it.
One day, I was on the road with Mike Weaver and Keith Myatt and I started to do impressions of Pete while we were traveling in the car. It was hilarious, and I must have kept this up for at least an hour and a half.
Mike and Keith had trouble keeping their faces straight whenever they worked with Pete after this. They just wanted to bust out laughing during the match. The harder you try not to laugh – the harder it seems to not to do so. At first they couldn’t even make eye contact with him in the dressing room because we would have all been laughing like hyenas on nitrous oxide!

Jason “Kashmir” Singh with Pete Evans.

There was another time when a few of us from Stoke were traveling back home from a show and I decided to play a rib. We noticed a car up ahead towing a trailer with what looked like a wrestling ring. As we got closer, we noticed that it was Dave Reece’s wrestling ring. No points for figuring out who was driving the car… I asked Mike to slow down a minute while I put my wrestling mask on. I asked Mike to overtake them while I proceeded to lean out of the opened window as we passed them by. I grabbed my nunchaku and held it together so it would look like a double barrelled sawn off shotgun. Here I was leaning as far out of the car window as humanly possible. Mask over my head and holding what looks like a firearm. Doing 70MPH on the M6. Dave Reece is driving and Pete Evans was the passenger and they both shite their pants. Nearly crashed their car.

One time when I was working as a professional shooter at the infamous Horseshoe Bar, Blackpool Pleasure Beach – there was myself, Vic Powers, and Shak (Kashmir Kid) standing on the steps at the front of the bar. Simon Charles was on the microphone asking for challengers. He was about to say his little promo speech. It went something like this…
“To my left, the Kashmir Kid… To my right, the masked (whatever he called me on the day) …and centre stage, Task Force 1 – Vic The Body Powers”…
I can’t remember who’s idea it was, but we all kept switching places on the steps …and it really gave him the needle. Pissed him off big time. 🙂

I remember many years ago wrestling on the holiday camps for Brian Dixon. I was travelling with Mike Weaver and Vic Powers. After the show we were getting changed in the dressing room and Vic Powers noticed some award medals. Gold looking finish and a nice, fancy ribbon. Vic took one and handed it to me. He told me to keep it and tell punters that I’d won it in a wrestling tournament. I though to myself why not? I didn’t believe in buying into my own publicity or believing my own hype. I thought it would be a good opportunity to see how many people I could work.
After the show the 3 of us went to a cafe on the A5 near Cannock. It was a very popular meeting place among the pro wrestling community. Vic told me to wear the medal. I felt a bit of a knob walking in there wearing it, but I was up for anything back then.
While we’re ordering some food one of the girls behind the counter asked me about my medal. Both Mike and Vic were nudging me with their elbows. Trying to egg me on.
I told the girl that I had won it in a wrestling tournament. That I’d wrestled four matches and won them all.
…and then Vic Powers just opened his mouth and said something like “No. That’s a lie. He has been wrestling, but he hasn’t won it. He’s stolen it from a holiday camp, and now he’s going around telling lies to everyone, telling them that he’s won it.” I could have crawled up my own arse!

The Man Behind The Mask

BEFORE

During my time in the wrestling business I had plenty of opportunities to work as a masked wrestler.
Working in a mask is something that I really enjoyed. A mask conceals not only your face, it conceals your whole identity and gives you an aura of mystery.

There is one element to maintaining that mystery. You never cut a promo. You never talk on the microphone, and you never grant the media an interview. Silence is the key! One excellent example of maintaining mystery and keeping kayfabe was Kendo Nagasaki. He would drive to a secluded spot near the venues where he used to wrestle, and put his mask on. He would enter and leave the buildings with his mask on, and he would never talk to anybody.

Kendo Nagasaki
Kendo Nagasaki

I know that the masked lucha libre wrestlers talk over the microphone and cut the odd promo, and I’m cool with that because it’s their culture. Their style. Even in the USA masked men talk over the mic, cut their promo’s, and shout insults to the fans. I get it – it’s the superhero alter ego thing, and I’m fine with that …but in the old days, here in British pro wrestling masked men never said a single word. It was all about the mystery.

Everyone knew it was Ron Simmons and Bucth Reed in those masks. A bit pointless really...
Everyone knew it was Ron Simmons and Bucth Reed in those masks. A bit pointless really…

In recent years I’ve noticed dozens of so called masked “professional” wrestlers walk into a building full of fans with their case full of wrestling gear in hand and walk to/ from the dressing room before, during, and after a show …and they can’t be bothered to make the effort to keep the mask on. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon or a rocket scientist to work out that he/ or she is the masked wrestler. No wonder the job is so screwed these days. If you are one of these individuals – please do yourself and the business a favor – either wise up, or retire and burn your boots, and please close the door on your way out. Thank You!

There were masked men who were blue eyes (baby faces) and some who were villains (heels). Back in the day most masked men were villains. The mystery created suspicion. Think about it. The armed bank robber in the balaclava. The terrorist with the tea-towel over his head. The scrotes who wear scarves and hoodies. They are doing something criminal, and they wear a mask to avoid being identified.

Whenever I wrestled a masked man I would take him to the ground, secure him with a submission or restraining hold, and try to unmask him. If you get the mask pulled up to his mouth the punters would be shouting and cheering me to rip his mask off. If I got it further up to his nose they would be standing up out of their seats screaming. Cheap heat as we used to call it, but it was minimum effort – maximum effect. It’s easy. Simple. You would get massive amounts of heat from the audience without taking a single bump.

Less pumps. Less injuries, and probably the best heat you’d ever get for doing next to nothing. You see, everybody in the building really want to see that mask ripped off someone’s head. They want to see what that person looks like. That’s good psychology.

I always tried to go that extra mile whenever I wrestled in a mask. I would do things like wear a pair of ladies stockings under the mask – just to black the eye holes out. I would visit fancy dress/ costume shops and buy fake pony tails and have them sewn to the inside of the mask. It was all to deceive the punters into thinking that I had long hair. Anything to throw them off the scent. Fake ponytails and stockings – makes me sound like some cross-dressing sexual deviant. Let’s move on…..

BEFORE
To Know. To Will. To Dare. To Keep Silence.

I’d never take someone’s mask completely off. I’d lift the veil of secrecy just a little, but I’d never open that veil completely. Tease the audience, and always leave them wanting more. Somehow they managed to scramble to the ropes and the referee would have to break it up. Spoilsport…

Sometimes I could successfully unmask someone, but the victory could be short lived as they could be wearing another mask underneath. Occasionally I would chase them back to the dressing room and run back into the audience with the mask. The idea was that I had ripped their mask off backstage, and I’d come back to the ring to show it to the audience. However, they never got to see who’s face was behind that mask. Maintain the mystery…

Sometimes it’s best to leave the fans in suspense. Then they will happily buy a ticket to the next show just to see that bugger get unmasked. It’s good for business. It’s worked for decades. Generations. If it ain’t broke – don’t fix it!

Enjoy your wrestling.
Chris.

P.S. Old School “Assassin” style masks made by EBay seller: Bobepins Mask Shoppe.

All Star Wrestling

Both myself and Mike Weaver were wrestling less and less for Max Crabtree. Dave Reece had gone under. I herd a story that Dave’s wrestling ring had been seized by bailiffs for unpaid bills. I don’t know if it was true or not, but all of a sudden Dave was out of the game.
Max was doing well at the time. He was running every night with Davey Boy Smith at the top of the bill. I don’t think Shirley was working at that point. Davey Boy drew money everywhere he went. He was fresh out of the WWF/ WWE. He came back to England to evade a lawsuit. He was being sued for allegedly putting someone in a Grovit and causing them brain damage. By then Max restructured his team, and we weren’t getting as many bookings.

One evening, Mike went to watch the All Star Wrestling at Victoria Hall, in Hanley. I think Klondike Kate (who also lived in Stoke at the time) introduced Mike to Brian Dixon. Brian showed an interest in booking Mike, and Mike put in a good word for me. Mike telephoned me to ask if I’d be interested in working a few jobs. Well, naturally I jumped at the chance. At first I think Brian booked us because of logistics and economics. Klondike Kate was a huge draw, but she couldn’t drive a car. It was easier to try and use either myself or Mike for transport, and if you can book three, or four people to travel together in one car – the petrol expenses are more economical.

It was a fantastic learning experience. I got the chance to work with people who were not working on Max’s team. Experience is the true teacher. Brian had a stronger emphasis on tag team wrestling. He had some great working teams like “The Liverpool Lads”, “Task Force 1” and “The Superflys”. All of them were fucking awesome workers!!!

I remember one day, wrestling for Brian in a tag against The Superflys. It was at a place called “Cornerstones” and I think Brian was paid “bill money” to provide a show there. The only uncomfortable thing was that the place was an institution. A mental asylum. That was a very surreal experience to say the least. The Superflys seemed quite at home there though…

Brian starting to book The Dynamite Kid – Tom Billington. Tommy looked like a shadow of his former self. I’d say he weighed 11 stone when I first met him. It wasn’t long before he beefed back up again. A few weeks later and he was looking awesome! You could see a few tell tale signs of his injuries, but he still had the same work ethic. He did all his knee drops off the top rope, his snap suplex, his dropkick off the top rope, and his his diving/ flying headbutt.

There was a young Japanese worker who was on tour for Brian. I remember Dynamite Kid having fluent conversations with the guy in Japanese. Unfortunately I don’t remember the Japanese workers name. Brian just called him “jaaaaappp”. He had a good physique, a mullet and a bum bag (fanny pack) …but then, who didn’t back then?

It’s a pity Tommy and Davey Boy couldn’t reconcile their differences because that would have been like printing money for any promoter. It would have been awesome for business.
Instead, they went their separate ways. Davey Boy was working with Max Crabtree, and Dynamite was working for Brian Dixon, and both promoters went head to head with each other every night.

It was a fantastic time in my life. Not only had I worked for Max Crabtree for a couple of years, I was now working for Brian Dixon and getting even more opportunities, and I was working at the other end of the spectrum.

Max liked very traditional old school technical wrestling. Brian Dixon had the same appreciation, but he liked the odd big bump and the occasional high spot. Just a few months before starting with Brian – I recorded some lucha libre off a satellite TV station. I showed the old VHS tape to Mike Weaver and we worked out a few short high spots to put in our matches. We were the first guys on the scene to do this. I’m not being big headed but we had something a bit new or unique looking. Also, we had been watching some pro-wrestling from Japan called UWFI Bushido. It was a stiff worked MMA style, but marketed as a legitimate sport. Mike used a lot of big bump power moves on me like the German Suplex.

The German Suplex.
The German Suplex.

I’m not bragging about it because it takes two workers to have a good match. It takes two to tango! It was luck more than anything else. We saw something that little bit different and just infused it into the traditional British style. We capitalized on it. We saw the right thing at the right time. OK, honestly? …We stole Mexican and “Japanese” moves – but we did it when nobody else had even seen it. Right time – right place. …and sometimes you just have to be an opportunist and jump on it before no one else does. The important thing was that it got us over that little bit more. Variety is the spice of life.

Mexican Lucha Libre style Head Scissors.
Mexican Lucha Libre style Head Scissors.

Nowadays everyone throws a bit of lucha in their matches, and there’s nothing wrong with that. The UK has now become a multi cultural melting pot of different styles. There’s more variety to a match, or a show. I like the idea of adding to our unique scientific technical British style – I just hope that over time we don’t dilute that style, because it’s our heritage. Our culture. Once something is lost – it’s lost. Gone forever, and you’ll never get it back…

One of the best things about working for Brian is the infamous Brian Dixon impersonations that some of the wrestlers do. Robbie Brookside was so good at this, that he could telephone wrestlers and they would be convinced that they were talking to Brian. Now there’s arib for you. …..Eeerrrrrrr fuckin’ ell – as Brian would say.

Receipts

I had been working for both Max Crabtree and Dave Reece for quite a few months when a few new wrestlers from Birmingham arrived on the scene. They had all been trained by a pro known as Pete Evans. The boys used to call him “gas mask Grimshaw” because he used to stink of body odor, all the time, constantly… These guys were really green, and were a bit clumsy. They just had a tendency to keep catching you in the nose, or in the balls quite often. They looked and worked bloody rotten. They couldn’t wrestle properly, but for some reason they thought they were the best thing since sliced bread. They really brought into their own publicity.

If these these guys were not taking taking liberties – then they were making mistakes that they shouldn’t be making. In pro wrestling we have what’s known as a “receipt”. Payback if want of a better word. You take liberties with me – and I’ll pay you back one way or the other. That’s just the way the business was. Sometimes wrestling can get real, and that’s when it’s the most fun! We were not forgiving, and we didn’t believe in turning the other cheek. If you do this the next you know and everybody will be walking all over you like a doormat. Respect had to  be earned and sometimes fought for!

Mike Weaver had given me a little pep talk or two when we were travelling on the road. At this point in time he had that “shooter” reputation. His receipts were legendary. He could end matches and careers very prematurely. Jolly Good! He told me about all these old time legendary shooters like Billy Robinson. According to Mike, when Billy Robinson first went to the USA – he tortured and crucified everybody who he worked with. I know what Mike was trying to do. He was trying to put ideas in my head, and I was all ears. If Mike din’t like someone, he would make their life hard in the ring. He didn’t like this new crew from Birmingham, and I didn’t like them too much either.

Dave Reece only booked them because they were cheap. They were undercutting all the professionals, and that affected our bookings. It backfired for Dave Reece in the end, because they were so crap no self respecting wrestling fan would pay to watch that shite again. Dave’s promotion started to go down the pan, and eventually he had to start booking us again. Some of the Brummy lads were getting booked with us, and that’s when the fun began.

I remember one night, working a tag, and of the Birmingham lads caught me right in the bollocks. So I went to work on him, and he couldn’t wait to tag out quick enough. He didn’t want to tag back in and work with me either. Dave Reece started to have battle royals or royal rumbles on his shows, and we took every opportunity to stiff them around as much as possible. In fact we made it our mission in life. They didn’t have any bottle or gut’s to fight back. They didn’t have the skill level or technique either. They were bloody rotten workers – they deserved it. Good riddance!

A few years later Mike and myself found our-self’s doing a few jobs in Lincolnshire for a wrestler and promoter who called himself Sergeant Sizzler. He would do like a policeman gimmick. Every weekend we would be somewhere like Skegness or Cleethorps working the holiday camps. Some shows would be outdoor, some indoors. The very last weekend of the season Sizzler called me to tell me that show had been cancelled due to adverse weather conditions. I called Mike to let him know, and he wasn’t happy. We heard on the grapevine that the show still went ahead, but with other workers. Sizzler owed Mike £10, and Mike thought he was trying to pull a fast one. Mike swore revenge!

It was several of years later and we back in the Lincolnshire territory, working for a strawb (wrestling talk for retard) called Gerry Norton. Mike was booked to work a match with Sizzler. It didn’t last long. I think it was over in the first or second round. Mike just wouldn’t sell for him at all. Then it happened. Mike head mare’d him over. Back to canvass, and stamped full force on his nose. Sizzlers nose just exploded with claret. It was like someone stamping on a rotten tomato. Sizzler was back on his feet in a a nanosecond. He thew himself over the top rope and ran back to the locker room. He moved as fast as lightning – I swear to God. He grabbed his case with all his clothes and ran to the fire exit. Mike was walking back into the looker room when Sizzler said “There was no need for that Mike.” and then he just ran to his car and tear-arsed it away as fast as he could. I think he called Mike on the phone. Payed him up, apologized, and everything was square again. That was Mike Weaver, he would wait years to pay you back, one way or another. Kind of reminds me of the song by Blondie /Debbie harry…

It's been 24 years since I trained with this guy. Mr Sam Donnelly. Thanks also to Scott and all the cracking bunch of lads at Impact Boxing :D Never, ever thought Id be doing this again! Where did all the time go???
It’s been 24 years since I trained with this guy. Mr Sam Donnelly. Thanks also to Scott and all the cracking bunch of lads at Impact Boxing 😀 Never, ever thought Id be doing this again! Where did all the time go???

Most of the bouncers in Stoke-On-Trent and Newcastle-Under-Lyme were afraid of Mike. I’ve been out and about with with him on a number of occasions. Wine, women, and song, …and all of that crap… One year we turned up at Ron Taylor’s Boxing and Wrestling Booth. The wrestlers there were avoiding our challenges. So, we traveled all this way and we we not exactly making any bread – if you get where I’m coming from. something had to change. We had to shift gears. Now, I had done some armature boxing with Sam Donnelly, and I had boxed on the booth previously. So, I did Mike a favor and asked Ron Taylor if we could box each other…

Mike is a good shooter, but he’s done no boxing at all. He had receipts from me in that fight. Afterwards, Mike was calling me all the profanities under the sun. I just reminded him that I had followed his code, about the receipts. For every stiffing that he gave to me (even though it was to toughen me up). For every time he mentioned receipts, repeatedly. It was repetition. Like hypnosis, or a subtle form of brainwashing. Either way he got what he wanted from me. He wasn’t disappointed either. 😀

There was another lad trying to get work on the booth who kept turning up there. A self professed, self taught pro wrestler. Bollocks! I’m not having that. He kept talking about what a tough hard man he was, and it was wearing quite thin. So, we agreed to box each other. The guy was full of shit. He tried to dance around yet he had fuck all cardio, and he soon started to blow up. It was over in the second round. Well, I had to drag it out out and play with him first. 😀

An Offer I CAN Refuse

Snatch On Steroids, An Offer I CAN Refuse, And The Fight That NEVER Happened.

I had been wrestling for well over a decade. I had opened my own wrestling school, and I had been promoting my own local wrestling shows for at least a good couple of years – when I was asked if I would be willing to hire my wrestling ring out for a local boxing event. This was no ordinary boxing match. It was going to be a bare knuckle gypsy boxing match/ fight featuring Bartley Gorman – The King of the Gypsies.

The King of the Gypsies was a title reserved for the so-called “World Champion” of the nomadic gypsy tribes of Great Britain and Ireland. Bare knuckle fighting was (and still is) highly illegal in the UK. It’s also very underground and secretive, not to mention lucrative. Despite the risks involved there was huge money to be made. I had to give the matter some serious though and consideration before I agreed to do anything…

The event was planned to take place in a scrapyard, in Sutherland Road, Stoke-on-Trent. It was been organised by two businessmen. They were dodgy used car salesmen. Arthur Daley type characters. They approached me one afternoon when I was building the wrestling ring, just before a live event. Their car auction and scrapyard was just next door to the venue that I was using at the time. One problem was that the fight would be taking place just a few hundred yards away from the local police station, and carloads, and van-loads of travelers would have stood out like a spare penis at a wedding.

I was tempted. Very tempted. However, this venture was high-risk. What if the police found out and raided the venue? People can scatter and make a run for it, and that’s all fine and dandy for them …but, I can hardly pick up a wrestling ring, tuck it under my coat, and walk off into the sunset – can I? For all I knew the police may have had the powers to seize the ring, or even destroy it …and that’s my biggest asset gone forever. I don’t mind taking a naughty risk here and there, but they have to be very calculated risks. So, I told the guys that I would have to give the matter some thought and get back to them with my answer.

What happened next made my mind up for me. An individual who worked as a handyman and a salmonella burger flipper at the venue came rushing over to me like there was no tomorrow and he said “Are you doing that ring hire job for the bare knuckle fight?” I just walked away from him and went straight up to the “promoters” and told them that the deal was off. There was no way I could justify taking the risk. You see this individual called Jim was a gossip, and he couldn’t keep his fat mouth shut to save his life.

He used to wind me up and make my blood boil something chronic within ten seconds of listening to his drivel. Every time I’d build the wrestling ring up, he was there telling ME how it should be done! He was one of these characters that I’d label as a “know-it-all” and a “billy bullshitter”. To hear him talk you’d think he’s done everything under the sun except for being a brain surgeon or an astronaut. He was a bragger, an exaggerator, and above all – a pain in the fu##ing arse! …and he used to delight in picking the the slightest fault in the design of the wrestling ring. Now, the one thing I will NOT allow is being told what to do by someone who has less knowledge, skill, or experience than myself. …BUT his load mouth compromised the whole venture as far as I was concerned. …but, there you go, that’s how one rotten apple can spoil it for the whole bunch. Idiot!

Initiations: Bonded By Blood

Just like a fraternal order, or a so-called “secret society” – professional wrestling in Great Britain had it’s own so-called initiations. Just like becoming a “made man” in La Costra Nostra, or let’s say becoming one of the hierarchy in a motorcycle gang – there was one thing we all shared in common. It was like a “blood in – blood out” kind of thing. It didn’t make the slightest bit of difference how many matches you’d had under your belt. As far as Max Crabtree was concerned, you were not entitled to call yourself a professional until you had spilled your own blood. You had to bleed. It was the only way to be accepted into that community…

Catching up with my old wrestling coach/ teacher/ mentor: Mike Weaver. Reminiscing about the good old days. Talking about scurfing, shooting, and stiffing people over a few pints.
Catching up with my old wrestling coach/ teacher/ mentor: Mike Weaver. Reminiscing about the good old days. Talking about scurfing, shooting, and stiffing people over a few pints.

I started out the old school way. I worked as a jobber. Took beatings every night, and I never complained. Eventually I started to gain a little respect, and that’s when I think things started to change for the better…

This was a way of paying your dues. Earning respect. A way to prove that you were made of the right stuff. I never complained about it. I just took it on the chin – like a man. Always returned to the dressing room, shake my opponents hand, and say “thank you for the wrestling lesson”. It was the correct way of doing things. Some people have come through the back door – so to speak, but not on Mike Weavers watch!

wrestlingquote

People at my day job – or at my local pub would ask me if I had to take an oath on the bible, like it was like becoming a Freemason or something like that. I’d just laugh it off. In reality it was nothing like that, but what happened on the road stayed on the road. I’d always protect the secrets of the game. I’d do this a lot with TV and Radio presenters – who’d ask me if the game was fixed. I’d give them a gentle demonstration by applying grovits, double wrist locks, chicken wings. They were all very painful catch wrestling holds, and very effective.

Sadly the whole veil of secrecy has been lifted away from the business. A pity really, because the mystery and the mystique of the business has gone away with it. They were special days. 😀

PIS##NG People Off In Porthcawl

Promoter Dave Reece was running live shows in Wales, and decided to run a show at the seaside town of Porthcawl. He had booked the Big Daddy tag match as the second bout on the card. I was wrestling in the opening match with another wrestler from Stoke known as Kid Sox. He had been touring around the UK doing all the holiday camps and he’d developed a comedy style of wrestling. Dave Reece liked his style of match and wanted me to work blue eye (baby face). He just wanted a clean solid technical wrestling match with two good guys. No villainy. Nice clean, gentlemanly sportsmanship, and a bit of comedy thrown in. That was the plan.

As we were getting changed, the referee Roy came and told us that the batting order had changed. He wanted me to work as the bastard villain, and he wanted me to really “rock n’ roll” the punters (fans). He still wanted Kid Sox to throw in the comedy, and instead of a draw he wanted Darren (Kid Sox) over to win.

Darren reckoned if we did this right Shirley (Big Daddy) wouldn’t be able to follow our match. It was a hell of a challenge because Big Daddy was then the biggest name in British wrestling. Mike Weaver was full of ideas. Egging me on to use every dirty cheating trick in the book. I was really up for it. This was like Christmas or my own birthday. We knew that Dave Reece didn’t want us to go this far, but we had the green light from Roy, so it was his responsibility as far as we were concerned.

Before the match started – I grabbed the microphone and cut a little promo. I told all the Welsh people what a beautiful country they lived in …how it was perfect like paradise on earth …but the problem was – it was full of Welsh people – who should know their place and bow down to their English masters! Already they hated me, and I hadn’t even started to wrestle! If I’m honest – I’m very talented at pissing people off.

We stole a couple of spots from the Big Daddy tag match. Things like me taking off the corner pads and posting Darren into the exposed steel turnbuckle hooks. I’d apply a boston crab, grab the rope, and get a submission. You could guarantee the fans would grass you up to the refree – so the submission would be disallowed. Another false finish spot would be something like Darren giving me monkey climbs out of the corners, but I’d uppercut him in his balls. As he fell to the canvas I would execute a folding press and place my feet on the ropes. Again I’d get grassed up by the fans and the fall would be disallowed.

“Texas Joe Sovaldi” was in the main event later that evening and Darren wrapped the match up with Texas Joe’s finishing routine. The short arm clothesline, the DDT, the running bulldog headlock out of the corner, and the dreaded leg drop of doom!

After the match was over, Dave Reece burst into the dressing room, and he was furious! He was fuming mad, and went into one of his outbursts… “Why the f##k did you change the script? …When I say I want a blue-eye match – I want a blue-eye match! …When I say do comedy – I mean do comedy! …What the f##k are the pair of you playing at?!!!” I just shrugged my shoulders and replied “We were just following orders. Roy told us the script had changed”. That was it – we were off the hook, but Dave still wasn’t happy. Mike Weaver and Keith Myatt couldn’t make eye contact with any of us, because there would have been an outburst of laughter. For someone so green, I must have done a few things right because Dave started booking me and Darren to do the same style match everywhere we wrestled. Obviously Roy was playing a rib on us all. I did find it hilarious.

I think Shirley was a bit angry too, but I didn’t mean it in a disrespectful way. It was a rib, or a wind-up, and that’s all there was to it. Tongues started wagging about the match within the wrestling community. I think there was few people who didn’t like Shirley and they found it hilarious. Some people liked Shirley and some people didn’t like him. Personally – I never had a problem with him. I know some people have written and said a lot of negative stuff about the guy, but I speak as I find. He was always OK around me.

Texas Joe wasn’t happy either, but we din’t give a flying f##k about him. He was a bloody rotten worker.

Rasslin’ Reunion

Visiting one of my very first pro-wrestling students, Dean Allmark – who is celebrating his 16 years in the pro-wrestling biz. Wishing you the best of luck for tonight mate, and for the future… You are an exemplar of British fortitude!

In your temple you are at one with the gods!

Wrestling is like a love affair. If you don’t take it seriously, it’s no fun. If you do take it seriously, it’ll drive you insane.