Welcome to Starter For 10. We ask professional wrestlers 10 questions so that you can find out a bit more about your favourite real life superheroes.
On this edition, Rayhne answers our questions.
What drew you into professional wrestling?
Wrestling was always part of my life, from owning WrestleMania 1 and 2 on video, my mum having her love for Bret Hart, to watching a live show when we were at a holiday camp in England. It’s always been there, in the background. Actually getting fully invested in wrestling is down to my big brother. I wanted to have more in common with him and the first ever PPV I ever watched with him was Night of Champions 09. The baseball slide from Michelle McCool and the storyline of CM Punk versus Jeff Hardy had me hooked and wanting more.
Who were your favourite wrestlers growing up and who are your favourites now?
Edge was my absolute favourite as a child, to the point I had all the different figures and the Edge Smackdown edition poster on my wall. Beth Phoenix and Natalya were always goals for me, not just as a wrestler but as a woman. In the Scottish scene my absolute favourites to watch were Nikki Storm, Kay Lee Ray, Noam Dar and Mark Coffey. Nowadays guys like Samoa Joe, Velveteen Dream, Killian Dain are who I’ll always get invested watching in.
What made you decide to start training to be a wrestler and where did you start?
I made the decision in 2015 I wanted to go for it. After attending my first ICW show Barramania, when Liam hit Carmel with a chair, that’s the moment I thought “hey that looks pretty fun”. After my dad passed in February the next year I found myself without a passion in life and that pushed me to eventually start my training with GPWA in spring 2016. After taking some time off, I never returned unfortunately, no matter how hard I tried to get back into it, wrestling maybe just wasn’t for me. After walking away with my hands up believing I would be better off staying behind the barrier, in September 2017, after 3 months of nagging from Stone Malone I found my place in Airdrie.
Who are your biggest influences in professional wrestling, as a fan and as a wrestler?
As a wrestler, of course my coach TJ Rage, for believing in me and giving me the opportunity to be where I am now. Eli Bulwark, for always being there for me, giving me advice on wrestling or mental health or anything. Jamie Winters, even though she is unfortunately not wrestling anymore, she will always give me some kind words and inspiration whenever I see her. As a fan I look up to wrestlers like Nikki Cross, Kay Lee Ray, Stevie Xavier among many other names for putting in such hard work to become the performers they have and deserving the opportunities they are all receiving. From both points of view Krieger is my biggest influence. He always takes the time to help the trainees out, even when he doesn’t need to, in anyway he can because he cares. He is one of the standout graduates and has put in a lot of effort to improve himself in anyway he possibly can. I have the up most respect for him.
Who has been your favourite opponent(s) and do you have a favourite match?
Angel Hayze is someone that is confident at what she does and as a result makes you feel more confident, always a pleasure to work with her. Working with Holidead put me out of my comfort zone majorly but in the best possible way. My recent match against Lizzy Evo (Styles) is definitely my favourite so far. I learned a lot from that experience physically and mentally. I hope one day a rematch is on the cards.
What has been your career highlight(s) so far?
Getting my second singles match not only against someone as great as Lizzy Evo (Styles), but also in a venue like the Caird Hall is definitely something that will stick with me. Also the confidence I have gained, not just in wrestling but in myself in general, I owe that to this wonderful experience.
Who would be your dream opponent, past or present?
The ultimate dream match for me would be against Nikki Cross. The UK scene is bursting with many women I hope one day I will earn the opportunity to face, but two girls I’ve always wanted to work personally is Molly Spartan and Jokey. There are guys I love to watch and would love the opportunity to have a match with such as Stone Malone, Ian Skinner, Rabu Romero and John Kerr as well as the bigger names like Stevie Xavier, Liam Thomson and Krieger.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?
Hopefully beating people up regularly, but I like to live in the moment and come what may!
Where can we find you on social media?
And finally, why do you do what you do?
Wrestling for me personally is an escape. I get to escape my reality and come out to play a character that is an extension of myself to entertain fans. If I can help even one of those fans escape their own reality and just enjoy the moment, whether they hate you or love you, that makes it all worth while.
Thank you to Rayhne for answering our questions.
Photo credit Sandy Smith Photography