Tickets went on sale this morning to see the new series of ITV’s World of Sport Wrestling filmed for a Saturday afternoon return.
The channel has teamed with America’s IMPACT Wrestling to produce the revamped show – after a 30-year absence from the nation’s screens.
Ten new episodes will be taped over two nights at Preston Guild Hall on Thursday, May 25 and Friday, May 26.
The announcement follows a two-hour WOS special, which aired on ITV on New Year’s Eve, featuring some of the best talents in Britain today.
But who is on the WOS Wrestling roster and what can fans expect from the new generation following in the footsteps of Kendo Nagasaki and company?
The WOS Wrestling Champion is Grado, a current Impact Wrestling star, known for his innate charisma along with his hilarious antics in and out of the ring.
The fan favourite, from Stevenston, Scotland, rose to fame with Glasgow’s Insane Championship Wrestling (ICW), where he is a former ICW World Heavyweight Champion.
‘The clown prince of Scottish wrestling’ was the breakout star of a Vice documentary, The British Wrestler, and then the BBC documentary on ICW, Insane Fight Club.
He made a splash when he entered TNA British Boot Camp 2 in 2014 and feuded with judge Al Snow, then secured a contract to compete for TNA in Orlando, Florida.
Davey Boy Smith
Davey Boy Smith Jr is the son of the late, great British Bulldog, the Wigan powerhouse who became a global star during the WWF boom of the 1980s and early 1990s.
The Canadian, real name Harry Smith, is currently working for New Japan Pro-Wrestling, but the nephew of Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart previously plied his trade in WWE.
There he won the Unified Tag Team Championship alongside Tyson Kidd, before departing the company in 2011 and heading out to Japan to further hone his craft.
He was a surprise entrant in a battle royal which preceded the main event of the WOS pilot and came to the rescue of Grado when he was targeted by Dave Mastiff’s cronies.
The antagonistic Sha Samuels, from East London, is a loudmouthed brawler known as the ‘East End Butcher’, who takes delight in beating down ‘mugs’ across Europe.
Sporting bright red trunks and braces plus a flat cap, he is renowned for an ultra-aggressive in-ring style, which led him to become champion of London’s Revolution Pro Wrestling.
In WOS he has sided with Mastiff and Moss, but Samuels also captured the ICW tag titles with Kid Fite and the tag belts of Germany’s acclaimed wXw with Terry Frazier.
As another finalist of TNA British Boot Camp 2 he has experience of working with IMPACT Wrestling and certainly cuts some controversial promos when handed a microphone.
The former WOS Wrestling Champion is the monstrous Dave Mastiff, a 300lb battering ram from Dudley in the West Midlands, who cuts a dominant figure on the UK scene.
‘The Black Country Beast’ captured the WOS title in the opening of the company’s New Year’s Eve special with the help of his henchmen Sha Samuels and Johnny Moss.
But due to the controversial win the TNA British Boot Camp 2 finalist was was forced to put the belt back on the line later that same night and lost the gold to Grado.
The former Preston City Wrestling (PCW) Champion is a very strong but deceptively agile competitor, with a wicked cannonball among the moves in his devastating repertoire.
The muscular colossus Johnny Moss is a 20-year veteran of the squared circle and looks every inch a superstar with his imposing size, immense power and technical skills.
‘The Vigilante’, from Egremont, Cumbria, has competed across the globe and now runs his own training academy, the Johnny Moss School of Pro Wrestling, in the North West.
He helped train Ireland’s WWE Superstar Finn Balor and England’s WWE Cruiserweight Classic competitor Zack Sabre Jnr but has plenty to offer in the ring himself.
Moss is a six-time NWA United Kingdom Heavyweight Champion and currently holds the What Culture Pro Wrestling (WCPW) Tag Team Championship with Liam Slater.
‘Liverpool’s No.1’ Zack Gibson is one of the best technical wrestlers in the UK and a talent tipped for worldwide success after winning the first Davey Boy Smith Cup Tournament.
Having begun his career at the tender age of 16, the master of the Shankly Gates submission has now added muscle to his 6ft 3in frame, and honed a traditional yet hard hitting British grappling style.
The foul-mouthed Scouser has made a huge impression as one of the most hated performers to compete for London’s celebrated PROGRESS Wrestling and now ICW.
Declaring himself “soon to be recognised” the UK and world number one, he has also dominated FutureShock Wrestling in Manchester and New Generation Wrestling (NGW) in Hull.
The masked ‘Mexican Sensation’ El Ligero is one of the finest high flyers based in Europe and undoubtedly one of the hardest workers on the UK grappling scene.
Over the past 16 years he has appeared for virtually every promotion on these shores, entertaining fans with his relentless energy and dazzling array of moves.
One half of the Hubba-Bubba Lucha tag team (with fellow cruiserweight star Bubblegum), Ligero has also tasted singles success in PROGRESS, PCW, NGW and WCPW.
He is the current heavyweight champion of Nottingham’s Southside Wrestling Entertainment and won Attack! Pro Wrestling’s Kris Travis Tag Team Invitational with Martin Kirby last month.
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Nick Aldis speaks to Mirror Online about joining WOS Wrestling
Former IMPACT Wrestling World Heavyweight Champion Nick Aldis is the newest addition to the WOS roster and brings top level experience to the division.
The 30-year-old, aka Magnus, from King’s Lynn, Norfolk, is the current Global Force Wrestling champion and the husband of WWE star Mickie James.
Aldis left England for America in 2009, and was soon a main event attraction on IMPACT Wrestling, winning tag gold with fellow Brit Doug Williams and WWE’s Samoa Joe.
The 6ft 3in ex-ITV Gladiator went on to submit the legendary Sting, defeat WWE great Kurt Angle and win the world title from ladder match icon Jeff Hardy during a dream run.
Leeds powerhouse Rampage Brown is one of the top heavyweights in the UK who floors opponents with a mean piledriver and a devastating brainbuster suplex.
Formerly part of WWE’s developmental system, the 33-year-old also reached the final three of TNA British Boot Camp 2, so is no stranger to a television environment.
He played a key role in putting Hull’s New Generation Wrestling on the map as a two-time NGW Undisputed Champion and has earned singles and tag team gold in PROGRESS.
Brown’s has formed a dangerous alliance with Ashton Smith in WOS and other duos should beware – he previously jointly held PCW’s tag titles for more than three years!
Ashton Smith is one of the most gifted athletes on the WOS roster – a talent who boasts agility combined with a devil-may-care-attitude to high risk scenarios.
Born in Kingston, Jamaica but now fighting out of Manchester, the tattooed 28-year-old is the perfect foil to the uncompromising hulk that is Rampage Brown.
With moves including a running knee lift and flying elbow, he became the current PCW Cruiserweight Champion by defeating the highly rated Bubblegum.
Smith and Brown have also been refining their partnership with appearances together already in 2017 for ICW, FutureShock and Scotland’s Pro Wrestling Elite.
‘Delicious’ Danny Hope is a highly entertaining performer who isn’t afraid to laugh at himself but also possesses the technical ability to make it to the top.
The Hertfordshire native began his career as a singles competitor, before rising to prominence as part of The Models tag team with Wigan’s Joey Hayes.
A strutting peacock who loves to show off his feathers, the king of TasselMania evolved from a comical cult hero into one of the biggest fan favourites in the North West.
He won PCW and Infinite’s heavyweight championships and has also worn tag gold in FutureShock, Wigan’s Grand Pro Wrestling and Wales’ Britannia Wrestling Promotions.
ICW Zero-G Champion Kenny Williams should be near the top of anyone’s list of the most talented young wrestlers this side of the Atlantic.
Nicknamed ‘The B*llocks’ by adoring fans, the Glaswegian high flyer endeared himself to supporters with his Back to the Future inspired ring attire and entrance.
North of the border, his Quiff Buster tilt-a-whirl DDT has led to singles triumphs in British Championship Wrestling and tag glory alongside Grado in Premier British Wrestling.
The 5ft 9in star has also made inroads in England, with acclaimed showings for PROGRESS including a spot at Download Festival and for PCW.
Manchester’s hugely versatile Sam Bailey is a wrestler who seems equally comfortable whether excelling as a much-loved face or a villainous heel.
Gliding his way across the ring in PCW as a disco dancing fan favourite, he also had the crowd in his corner when he shone in a ladder match on the WOS pilot.
Yet he is just as convincing when thriving upon antagonising the faithful support of Liverpool’s TNT Extreme Wrestling as part of the Manc Union stable.
A singles champion for NGW, FutureShock and GPW, he has also teamed with Zack Gibson in the past, leading to great success in the North East and Midlands.
Viper, from Ayrshire, Scotland, is the only woman confirmed as part of the WOS roster, reportedly because no-one else dares get in the ring with her!
The 201lb, 5ft 8in juggernaut made her mark on TNA British Boot Camp 2 in 2014 and the following year could be seen on cards across the UK.
Viper has held the women’s titles of ICW and Morecombe’s Alpha Omega Wrestling, the latter where she held onto the gold for more than 12 months.
She won the first WOS women’s singles match on the New Year’s Eve show, flattening Alexis Rose after making her entrance accompanied by a giant snake.
Joe Coffey is the eldest of Scotland’s Coffey Brothers, who defeated Rampage Brown and Ashton Smith on the inaugural episode of the revamped WOS.
The 28-year-old Glaswegian is best known as the ‘Ironman’ of ICW, who briefly held the promotion’s heavyweight championship last summer and won the 2017 Square Go.
At 5ft 11in and 242lb, he relies on an assortment of power moves and can dispatch rivals with his Black Coffey discus lariat, springboard splash and Boston crab.
Joe has also previously competed in Japan for Pro Wrestling ZERO1, where he became the first Scottish wrestler to perform in the famous Korakuen Hall.
Mark Coffey is the youngest of the Coffey Brothers, who has also enjoyed tremendous success in his home city promotion of ICW.
Like his brother, the 26-year-old ‘Real Deal’ has wrestled in Japan, where he cut his teeth and returned ready to make his mark on British wrestling.
Not only has he twice held the Zero-G Championship, he’s also been a three-time ICW Tag Team Champion with Jackie Polo as Polo Promotions.
One half of the longest reigning tag champions in the company’s history, a heavyweight title win would make him the first Triple Crown Champion in ICW history.
‘The Pound For Pound Best’ CJ Banks, from Southport, Merseyside, is a vicious competitor with the ability to turn even the most friendly of crowds sour.
An elderly man incensed by his antics once tried to punch his lights out at Liverpool’s Infinite Promotions, proving kayfabe is still alive and well on Merseyside!
That level of heat was a tribute to his skills on the microphone and between the ropes, where the technically sound grappler can also brawl with the best of them.
He held Infinite’s top title for nearly two and a half years, having great matches with a variety of opponents, and never fails to make an impact with his running knee attack.
Tickets for the tapings, with doors at 7pm and first bell at 7.30pm, are available from Gigsandtours.com / Ticketmaster.co.uk / prestonguildhall.co.uk
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Brawl breaks out at WOS Wrestling press conference