Ringbelles Roundup (28 January 2014) – Ivelisse Velez strikes gold, Rain retires for real, Nevaeh & Leva Bates impress
It’s been some comeback by Ivelisse Velez from being released by WWE in August 2012. Refusing to be a statistic, she picked herself up and got back in the saddle. While she has experienced TV exposure with WWE by being in the most recent Tough Enough in 2011 and in TNA for its Gut Check (which she weirdly lost, even though she won her match against Le’D Tapa, who ended up getting the contract), leading to working the Knockouts Knockdown and World Cup PPV tapings, arguably her biggest achievement happened last Friday in Ybor City, Florida.
It’s funny – WWE’s rumoured reasoning for releasing Velez was that she had “attitude issues”. I would say that rather than “attitude”, she has self-confidence and determination, and they are major contributing factors as to why she holds the SHINE title. (more…)
Have you listened to the latest Women Of Wrestling Podcast with Taeler Hendrix yet? Without hyperbole, it is one of our favourite shows in a long time. Interesting, insightful and revealing, the former TNA Knockout talks about how she had no idea what the result of her Gut Check would be or that Joey Ryan was going to gatecrash the segment, was told very little about what her future in the promotion would be or that they were planning to release her.
She also reveals that she wasn’t fully open with them either, as the reason why she put on the weight in-between appearances was to keep herself healthy to fight off the possibility of cancer, and because she was suffering pain when she wrestled as she had no padding on her body when she was bumping. That weight issue is something that I discussed with recovering anorexic and former gymnast Sarah Robertson, and she practically said the same thing.
Taeler also discussed her time in Ohio Valley Wrestling, how she was disappointed with her start in the promotion despite winning the Women’s Championship, and how an instinctive “wrong” move saw her fortunes turn around. She also revealed her intentions to release a book, form a tag team with distant relative Cherry Bomb – all is revealed in the interview – and wrestle in as many places as possible. Instead of moping, shaking her fist at the world or complaining that she’s the victim of a conspiracy theory, she dusted herself off, made a plan and is executing it. (more…)
It’s weird – this website was buzzing with stories last month as part of Open Female Fight Season, with results from Bellatrix, Absolute Intense Wrestling, Women Superstars Uncensored, SHIMMER, SHINE & NCW: Femmes Fatales all flowing in, interspersed with interviews, reaction and discussion. It was certainly a busy time for women wrestling fans, and sites dedicated to it, such as this one. You would imagine that at the conclusion of such a period, there would be a hangover of sorts where many wrestlers would rest, promotions would ease down and there would not be that much to talk about. (more…)
Pro Women’s Wrestling Alliance holds an 8-woman tournament to crown an Interim Champion after Madison Eagles‘ knee injury, which kept her out of action for all of 2012. Jessie McKay, Kellie Skater, Sway, Shazza McKenzie, Megan Kate, Evie, Harley Wonderland & Alex Lee all vie for the title.
1. Kellie Skater made Alex Lee tap out to an anklelock
2. Jessie McKay pinned Harley Wonderland with the Schoolgirl Crush
3. Shazza McKenzie advances via forfeit as Sway was unable to compete
4. Evie defeated Megan-Kate with the TTYL
5. Jessie McKay made Shazza McKenzie tap out with an Octopus Stretch
6. Evie pinned Kellie Skater with the TTYL
7. Evie beat Jessie McKay with the TTYL to win the PWWA Interim Championship
a. Jessie McKay v Shazza McKenzie went to a 15-minute time limit draw
b. Jessie McKay beat Shazza McKenzie & Harley Wonderland in a 3-way when McKay made Wonderland tap out to the Octopus Stretch
c. Shazza McKenzie pinned KC Cassidy with the Shaztastic Stunner (more…)
A fortnight ago, I embarked on an adventure. It’s not unusual that I’d take a rather long drive or trip for wrestling – I have ventured to Sydney, South Australia and Canberra for this crazy passion of mine, but this… this was truly out of my comfort zone. Getting on a plane for five hours (my longest plane trip ever), to go and see a pretty awesome sounding wrestling show, was almost crazy to my friends. “You’re going where?! For what again?”
Touching down to Perth, a place two hours behind my home city, and it was by far one of the laid back places I have ever set foot in. After hanging out for a bit and taking in the sights on Friday, I made my way to the show, which was located about 20 minutes from the inner city of Perth.
A while ago, when the show was announced I was drawn to it instantly. Not just because international talent such as Portia Perez, Tomoka Nakagawa and Saraya Knight were scheduled to appear. But because an Australian promotion was taking the time and dedicating the Global Conflict tournament to women and opening the doors to women around the world. This type of feat needed to be respected, celebrated and recognised. Going over to Perth, seemed to be the next logical step for me, plus a great opportunity to see some local talent I had not seen before and a chance to see a personal dream match of mine (that being Kellie Skater v Nikita Naridian). (more…)
There are a lot of women’s wrestling promotions in the northern half of the planet. SHIMMER, Femmes Fatales, Women Superstars Uncensored, SHINE, IndyGurlz, Lucha Libre Feminil, Bellatrix, Pro-Wrestling: EVE, Fierce Females, WAVE, OZ Academy, JWP, Diana, Ice Ribbon, and Sendai Girls, just to name a few. In addition, there are promotions with women’s divisions like Anarchy Championship Wrestling, Elite Canadian Championship Wrestling, Acclaim Pro Wrestling, Squared Circle Wrestling, World Xtreme Wrestling, AAA, CMLL, FutureShock, ABC Catch and more.
In the southern hemisphere, there are comparatively few – which means if you are the champion of one of those, you are in a much more exclusive club. While there are some like the IndyGurlz Australia title and the Riot City Wrestling Women’s strap, arguably the most prestigious belt in women’s wrestling is in the southern hemisphere is the one representing the Pro Women’s Wrestling Alliance, and it’s now officially held by a grappler who has spent the last year as the lady in waiting… (more…)
For the last year, there have been two Pro Women’s Wrestling Alliance Champions – Madison Eagles held onto the championship during her convalescence for her knee injury, but in the meantime, Evie claimed the Interim Championship by beating Megan-Kate, Kellie Skater and Jessie McKay. Since Eagles’ return in January, both wrestlers have closed in on each other, and today sees them collide to determine who is the true PWWA Champion. The question is: has Eagles – through no fault of her own – given the upstart New Zealander too much time to settle into her role as Champion to the point where she is too tough to beat, or can she reclaim her spot as the sole top dog in PWWA?
Elsewhere on the card, there are a slew of debuting women like Olivia Shaw, Demi Bennett, Izzy, Shadow Shinobi and Ashley Sparks as well as the first ever PWWA Champion Skater facing the increasingly impressive Kellyanne English.
NHB Girls is at the show in Parramatta in the Sydney area and will have exclusive interviews coming up too. Click after the jump to catch the results, and find out who is going to be the Undisputed PWWA Champion… (more…)
We’ve been itching to talk about it for a month, and are glad that now that it has been broadcast, there is nothing to stop us now. Paige is the first NXT Women’s Champion, spotlighting her as the top woman in WWE’s developmental division right now. It is the shining moment in the 20-year old’s 6-year career – the last 18 months of which has been spent in Florida in Florida Championship Wrestling and later NXT. It was also a testament to WWE’s faith in the Briton that she defeated two established WWE Divas en route to the final of the tournament, defeating Tamina Snuka and former Divas Champion Alicia Fox to make it to the decider against Emma.
In what was the opening contest of last Wednesday’s broadcast, Paige and Emma put together what has to be the best women’s match that WWE has presented in the last year at least. With big moves peppering the proceedings, a decisive finish via the Paige Turner and the endorsement of fellow Divas and WWE COO Triple H made it all feel like a really big moment – as it should have been.
In 1995, a mere four years after the invention of the World Wide Web, Amazon.com launched onto the Internet as an online bookstore with a simple, yet slightly baffling plan. Instead of looking to be a viable entity, it anticipated that it may not make money until the turn of the millennium. Its plan was to expand its brand quickly – no matter the cost – by making sure that everyone online knew about Amazon, what it did and its reputation. Going under the mantra of “get big fast”, it was its high profile which helped it to survive the dot-com bubble bursting in early 2000, which claimed a lot of firms which had floated on the stock exchange. Despite having not made a profit by that point, business kept flowing and it finally went into the black in the fourth quarter of 2001, more than six years after being launched.
The reason I bring up this tale is because over the last year, a number of women’s wrestling promotions have done similar things – rolled the dice to generate a following very quickly, enhance its profile and make sure that fans know that they are a real player. Insane Championship Wrestling: Fierce Females and Bellatrix have managed certain degrees of success in the UK with a plan which is seeing them speculate to accumulate both financially and creatively, but a certain promotion in Florida has gone even further in leapfrogging up the ladder to the point where it is being discussed as being the best women’s wrestling promotion in the western world… (more…)
Ringbelles Roundup (9 July 2013) – Knockouts dearth, Heidi & Taeler, SHINE, Maria Kanellis, Sunny & more
We praised Mickie James’ last six months in TNA, including her winning the Knockouts Title and turning heel in the process. However, you have to wonder what sort of division she is reigning over, when you consider how many – or conversely, how few – female wrestlers there are on the roster these days.
As well as James, you have Gail Kim, Miss Tessmacher, ODB, Tara, Taryn Terrell and Velvet Sky as in-ring performers – though ODB is usually a ref these days, Terrell is hardly a regular and Tessmacher & Tara has been absent for a while. That’s seven women – half of what they had in 2008 when the division was really a pioneer and vastly overshadowing what was going on in WWE at the time. When you consider that TNA only has about three women doing most of the work these days, you can see why the promotion binned its Knockouts Tag Team Titles following them being vacated by ODB and Eric Young.
The roster was thinned out last Wednesday when a four time Knockouts Champion and the first Gut Check winner were cut from the roster. Madison Rayne – who is heavily pregnant and is due to give birth next month – saw her contract expire and it wasn’t renewed. Some have complained that it was a bit tactless of TNA to do that, but Rayne herself apparently holds no grudges and has made no complaints in public. It is possible that she may return in time.
The other departure is Taeler Hendrix, who has been criminally underused by the promotion since winning the Gut Check last June. She has only appeared on two episodes of Impact – one was the Thanksgiving Day episode, which was a filler show because so few were watching, and the other was last month as she served as cannon fodder for Mickie’s slow-burn heel turn. Meanwhile, she has been working on her character during her time in Ohio Valley Wrestling, which we cover in more detail later on. (more…)
This one seems so damn obvious, I’m almost apologetic at even including her. She’s the woman who was the best female wrestler in the world before she was struck down with a career threatening knee injury in late 2011, and she’s the woman who came back earlier this year and immediately laid down a marker that she’s *still* the best female wrestler in the world. She’s possibly part machine, and certainly lubricated by coffee – but whatever she is, she’s already a strong front-runner for 2013′s Wrestler of the Year award. She’s Madison Eagles, and let’s take a look at her 2013. (more…)
Continuing on with the Australian theme from my last column, I think it’d be almost wrong if I didn’t at least have one column on our own PWWA.
I wish I could sit here and write that Australian Wrestling is full of extremely positive individuals that whole-heartedly support women’s wrestling. Unfortunately, it’s just not the case, and just like across the world, women’s wrestling fans (Warriors? Advocates?) are almost a rare breed. At times, to hear such negativity to come from people within or around the business about something that those of you that are reading this hold dear is frustrating. Especially when we literally have some of the most talented and exciting female wrestlers right in our very own country. I can’t tell you the amount of debates I have gotten into about this topic – I know, it shouldn’t matter what others think, but sometimes, to be dismissive of something that is great, if not greater than the main event just because the wrestlers are women, then it’s worth fighting for.
Formed in 2007, PWWA is the first established (and still the only) all women’s wrestling promotion currently operating in Australia. The company brings together the best female wrestlers in Australia, New Zealand and around the world. Up until a few months ago, it was also the only promotion outside of the United States to host a SHIMMER Women’s Wrestling Championship match, an achievement that the company holds proudly. (more…)
It was interesting to see the Bellatrix roster after the Bellatrix 6 card. Out of their wrestling gear, they got dressed again into their branded t-shirts and glammed them up with shorts, skirts, blazers and the like to meet and greet the fans, sign autographs and pose for photos. In every photo, the Bellatrix logo was visible, pushing the brand and getting the recognition out there. Coupled with the gigantic wall hangings, Bellatrix: Female Warriors has ascended to be the most professional looking promotion in the western world.
Granted, a lot of joshi promotions in Japan have branded gear, and Ice Ribbon & Stardom have had workout gear too – but it is rarer to see in the English-speaking countries. However, it is something that other promotions would do well to adopt in the future.
Since rebranding from the World Association of Women’s Wrestling in January, Bellatrix as a brand has been ascending at a rapid pace, and it’s being noticed. Ahead of Sunday’s card, promoter Saraya Knight was interviewed on F4Wonline.com, the BritWresChat podcast and the BBC radio station serving Norfolk – the county which Bellatrix is based. In addition, hype was posted on a number of websites and also in the local print media, which led to an audience of more than 250 coming along to the show to make a lot of noise and generate a proper atmosphere. As far as exposure goes, Bellatrix has taken big steps forward – however, as Saraya explained during the interview with Bryan Alvarez, the end goal is not to have the promotion as the main focus; instead, it is being used as a way to point eyes towards the wrestlers on the show. (more…)
Ringbelles Roundup (18 June 2013) – Mickie James, Brittney Savage, Divas, Bellatrix & Queen of Queens
Mickie James turned full heel on last Thursday’s Impact Wrestling by attacking Velvet Sky. Velvet had produced a letter from her doctor saying she was cleared to wrestle and wanted a rematch for the Knockouts Championship, but Mickie argued that she could have just downloaded it from the Internet before going after her previously injured knee before being peeled off her rival by the referees.
Fair play to TNA, James and Sky – this angle has been booked and executed beautifully. Everyone involved has done a great job to get the new Knockouts Champ over, and it looks like she is having a great time finally having something she can really sink her teeth into… and it’s long overdue.
To be brutally honest, both WWE’s and TNA’s writers have been coasting with Mickie James for the past six years. Following the epic angle between she and Trish Stratus which hit its zenith at WrestleMania 22, nothing of real note has been given to the 33-year old. Once she turned babyface in the summer of 2006, there were a few feuds with Lita, Melina, Beth Phoenix and Maryse, but she was portraying the typical white meat babyface with no real reason as to why you should cheer for her apart from that she was smiley and was wrestling heels. The only other big storyline she was part of was the “Piggie James” deal with Lay-Cool which felt like it was an unfair public rib on her – and she lost that feud, which meant that she never even got her redemption. Considering how well she had played a character in her first 8 months in WWE, it’s still staggering that she was not given the opportunity to do anything like that again during her run, except for being the punching bag to get Michelle McCool and Layla over in a nasty, bullying fashion which seemed to make people hate WWE’s writers than Lay-Cool. (more…)
Sometimes the negativity on wrestling can overwhelm why we love watching wrestling in the first place. As a result, we have decided to inject some positivity into the proceedings by having a look at things that we love about women’s wrestling. Rhi Lockwood, Editor in Chief and Webmistress of Australian women’s wrestling site NHB Girls, is the person who we feel can turn our occasional frowns upside down.
For her first piece, Rhi has selected a wrestler close to her heart. As we progress, other wrestlers will be highlighted…
The very first time I saw Madison Eagles was over ten years ago at the Australian Wrestling Supershow in Sydney that was telecast on FOX Sports on subscription TV. She accompanied one of the wrestlers to the ring, and halfway through the match intervened – climbing onto the top rope – and made her mark. I had heard of her, so to finally see her in action even if it was for a brief second, was just inspiring.
Over the years I’ve seen her wrestle here in my home town of Melbourne and every time she has gotten better, sharper & more of a force to be reckoned with. She seemed to be the type to really make things happen for herself, setting goals and going for it, surpassing these aspirations completely. She headed to the US & made a splash in SHIMMER, Ring of Honor & Chikara, just to name a few – and in a way she went out and made such a tremendous path way for so many women in Australia & New Zealand overseas. It was no surprise to me when she defeated Mschif to become the SHIMMER Champion on Volume 31. (more…)
I’m still buzzing after Insane Championship Wrestling’s Fierce Females show on Saturday, which culminated with Kay Lee Ray winning her first ever championship when she won the tournament to become the inaugural Scottish titleholder. Beating Rhia O’Reilly and Viper in two very different contests, she proved that she is versatile and dependable as a main event talent. However, it was more than just KLR who impressed, with her defeated opponents also impressing, along with Carmel Jacob, Bete Noire, Erin Angel and Blue Nikita putting together great outings, and North American talent like Leah Von Dutch and Crazy Mary Dobson also entertaining. In fact, those two elements got me thinking…
First off, women’s wrestling fans are doing themselves a disservice by ignoring Europe. While places like America, Canada, Japan and Mexico are places which get a lot of attention, there are now three major all-women’s indie promotions to speak of in the UK alone, and plenty of skilled women from all over the continent looking to make their mark, and they can make it in the likes of Fierce Females, Pro Wrestling: EVE and Bellatrix because of their differing standpoints. (more…)
Australia’s PWWA has announced today that they have a show booked for August 3rd in Parramatta, Sydney, NSW at The Roxy. While PWWA branded matches continue to be a spotlighted part of PWA shows, this will be the first all female event for the company since last October’s show in another Sydney suburb, Casula.
On the show last October, New Zealand standout Evie defended the PWWA Interim Championship against Kellie Skater in their third big meeting. The match actually ended in a 30 minute draw, allowing Evie to retain her title. Of course, the reason why there was even an Interim Championship to begin with was the long term injury to regular PWWA Champion Madison Eagles, who missed the entirety of 2012 due to a knee injury. Although no matches have yet been announced, one could speculate that the show may see the unification of the PWWA Championship and the PWWA Interim Championship (in keeping with the general rule of Interim Championships), but that is strictly speculation at this point.
As you’ll note, the graphic above shows the “Big 5″ PWWA stars (Shazza McKenzie, Madison Eagles, Evie, Kellie Skater & Jessie McKay) – all of whom recently travelled to the US and competed for SHIMMER and SHINE – and one would expect the usual suspects from Australia and New Zealand to be there too. The UK’s Amazon worked on the October show, and the previous show to that featured Nicole Matthews (and the first SHIMMER Title defence outside the US), so international guests are not an impossibility. In fact, PWWA have invited any interested female wrestlers to give them a holler via email for information.
We will, of course, bring you news of the card as it is officially announced.
The Champ Is Here. Right on the verge of her return to the ring at PWA’s “Bash At The Beachie” on Saturday (in mixed tag format) and “The Unusual Suspects” (in women’s tag action) next Sunday, the former longtime SHIMMER Champion and still PWWA Champion Madison Eagles checks in with Ringbelles to discuss the long road back from injury, her thoughts on the Aussie scene during her year out of the ring (including the ascent of Evie) and her picks for success in 2013.
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
Ringbelles Roundup (11 December 2012) – Divas future, intergender wrestling part 2, Portia’s tweets, Fierce Females DVD review & more
WWE knows the Divas division is in tatters at the moment, and seems intent on asking us what we want to happen to it, so the promotion has been contacting focus groups asking about the future of the women. PWInsider reports they were sent out to ask fans what they think of the Divas in the past, what they are like now, and which women they liked. Another question which was reportedly on the list is what role they wanted to see them in – be it as valets/managers, dancers, wrestlers, love interests and more.
This could be the opportunity that fans of women’s wrestling have been waiting for. If the data comes back in the way which we would hope for, it could see a resurgence of in-ring action for the Divas in 2013, along with some proper storylines with episodic character development, culminating in big matches at pay-per-views. It could see them take more prominent roles on the TV shows, and have their segments played out in front of interested, active crowds who care about what is going on. It could also see an injection of new talent into the ranks, possible gimmick revamps to make them more interesting, and having more options of big matches all as part of the quest to snare the Divas Championship.
Oh yes, it could be the start of something beautiful.
But what if it isn’t? (more…)
We have received a number of emails from women in the wrestling world who are interested in the free airtime we are offering as part of My Name Is… and we feature another one today in the form of Australia’s Kellyanne English (or Nikita Naridian, depending on which promotion you are watching her in).
She discusses how she got hooked on wrestling – as well as how it is similar to Sammii Jayne‘s story last month – starting training at a young age, travelling to the Storm Wrestling Academy as soon as she possibly could, competing against Amazon Ayesha Ray at the last PWWA show, the reason for the two different character names, and how she is planning another big trip abroad next year.
(left click on picture to stream, right click and “save as” to download)
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“I am so sorry I have not been in touch in a while. I have been in and out of hospital and have not been able to get access to the internet in over a week. I am very upset I have to write this email because I have to cancel all future dates until December. I am not sure if you had heard about the knock to the head I got in Germany a few weeks ago or not, but I got a bad cut above the eye and it was stitched up and all seemed fine. But after a few days I was getting extremely painful headaches, loud buzzing in my left ear and my vision in my left eye is completely blurred. The doctor has told me it may be damage to the 8th cranial nerve and I am waiting for a CT brain scan and have been advised to stop wrestling for the next few months. It could be permanent or it could go away by itself, but until all signs have been alleviated I will not be able to engage in any heavy physical activity.”
That’s the message Rebecca Knox posted on her own website back in October 2006, following her serious injury in a match against Kisu in Dortmund on September 22 of that year. The match finished as normal, and took on Sweet Saraya the following night in Great Yarmouth, England in a match which saw her drop the Queens Of Chaos Championship. After that, she took some time out to get medically checked out, which gave her the bad news about her 8th cranial nerve injury. It also meant that the proposed Iron Woman Match between she and Daizee Haze at SHIMMER Volume 7 had to be scrapped, after the pair had engaged in a heated feud in the promotion’s early days.
As she points out in her post, she was expecting to be out until December 2006. It’s now October 2012, and only now is the 25-year old from Dublin, Ireland seriously thinking of a return. (more…)
It has been more than a year since the last Pro Women’s Wrestling Alliance show where Madison Eagles successfully defended the SHIMMER Championship against Jessie McKay and Nicole Matthews in the first SHIMMER title match to take place outside of North America.
Since then, Eagles has experienced a long period on the shelf due to a serious knee injury but retains the PWWA Championship by her side – meanwhile, a PWWA Interim Champion has been crowned in Evie, who won the title during the most successful week in her career in August. She makes her first title defence today against Kellie Skater, who has been beaten twice by the champion, but told us on our most recent Women Of Wrestling Podcast that she’s looking to prove she can beat the kick-happy New Zealander.
Elsewhere, Evie’s (former) BFF Megan-Kate takes on Shazza McKenzie, Jessie McKay faces Britenay, and England’s Amazon Ayesha Ray makes her Australian debut.
New Zealand’s Evie defends her PWWA Interim Championship on Saturday, having won the belt in a tournament which ran over the summer (or winter, if you’re from the southern hemisphere), just one week after winning the Impact Pro Wrestling Women’s Championship in a 3-way involving Britenay and Megan Kate, though her BFF was inserted into the match at the last minute. It was a questionable decision which made many wonder how Megan Kate managed to sly her way into the title match after losing her semi-final to Britenay on two occasions.
However, Megan Kate stood by the side of her BFF in her match last weekend as Evie defended the IPW strap against Britenay in her first defence of that belt too, as part of IPW Fallout in Auckland. You can watch the match after the jump, and keep watching after the decision for more developments. (more…)