Wrestling: Surprises in store for fans at title clash

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The resurgence of pro wrestling in recent years - thanks mainly to the highly popular US-based WWE television shows - was shown with the huge success of the Kiwi Pro Wrestling (KPW) show that hit Tauranga last year.

It was the first live pro wrestling event for 30 years and the good news for fans is that the Bays Wrestlefest is back at the Queen Elizabeth Youth Centre on Saturday from 7pm.

The organiser is Tauranga's Kane Harris - aka Lazarus Volt - who along with partner H-Flame will be defending their KPW tag team title.

Harris is promising Western Bay wrestling fans, and those who just love a good night out, an action-packed night full of surprises.

"It will be all the high-flying action you expect to see on TV, like the WWE, so the same sort of things with all the drama," Harris said. "There is always the battle between good versus evil and we have performers coming from all over the country, from Invercargill, Queenstown, all over the North Island, a couple from the UK and one from Australia.

"We also have some good local talent that has come through the Hire Wire Wrestling School I run here like Bull Addams from Merivale, Steve Jordan, Shane Carver from Papamoa."

The school Harris set up nearly three years ago is aimed at young athletes over the age of 18.

"It is involved with all aspects of wrestling. You start off with the basics of how to fall, and do all the moves, and from there you learn the psychology and character development, and how to do promotions and how to speak to the crowd and perform in front of a camera."

Harris (Lazarus Volt) and his mate H-Flame take on Charlie Roberts and a mystery partner in the feature tag bout.

Harris admits not knowing who the mystery man is until he steps into the ring has made preparing to defend the title they have held for 18 months much more difficult.

"It has been pretty hard to prepare, to be fair. Obviously, we can prepare for who we know but we just don't know anything. It could be someone [who is] 150 kilos or whatever - it will be the unexpected."

An undoubted highlight of the evening will be the top female bout between Scarlett, the NZWPW diva and Suzi Q. Harris is expecting a full-throttle battle between these two.

"Scarlett is beautiful, talented, a rule-bender and heart-breaker. She cares more about her own appearance than the response of the fans but [has] never met another wrestling diva that she didn't like to beat down in the ring.

"Suzi Q recently made her return following an absence from the ring that has left her determined to impress the fans with her wrestling prowess. Suzi Q's taken on the best that KPW can offer and now she's taking on the best that NZWPW can throw at her."

Harris has heard plenty of jibes in the six years he has been in the ring about pro wrestling not being a real sport and he is not fazed at all.

"My comeback to that is you can't fake gravity. There is an element of pre-determinedness but you are going to get hurt out there - there is no way round it. The ring is an object made of wood and steel and you can protect yourself all you like but you are going to come away bruised and a bit battered."

Tomorrow there will be a chance to sample action with six short matches over two shows at 12pm and 2pm at the same venue.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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