Wrestler Joe is liv­ing his

Warwickshire Telegraph - - THEATRE -

You’re about to em­bark on a na­tion­wide tour fol­low­ing the suc­cess of WOS Wrestling on

ITV. What do you think is the ap­peal of the TV shows?

I THINK the shows of­fer some­thing for ev­ery­one. All those on the ros­ter bring some­thing to the team. Grado is an awe­some per­son­al­ity, Sha Sa­muels is so pow­er­ful, Viper brings some­thing new, Os­prey is one of the best per­form­ers and Justin Sy­sum has a back­ground in stunts and does in­cred­i­ble things. I could go on and on. I think ITV picked the best of the best.

The pro­fes­sional wrestling scene has been grow­ing ex­po­nen­tially over the last five years. I think I’m very lucky that I came into things when this trend started. It’s an amaz­ing time. Ev­ery­one from kids to some­one like my gran loves wrestling. I think it’s why ITV de­cided to bring it back.

What does your train­ing in­volve? IT’S a very phys­i­cally in­tense busi­ness, but it’s some­thing I’ve al­ways wanted to do. I’m ab­so­lutely liv­ing my dream.

I won’t name names, but some of the best ath­letes in the world have come along to train­ing ses­sions and then said ‘it’s not for me’. You need a cer­tain level of tough­ness. I took part in the Com­mon­wealth Games and I’m the cur­rent Bri­tish cham­pion of freestyle.

I train four or five days a week. I do three or four hours if it’s prowrestling train­ing and one and half hours if it is freestyle. The fo­cus is very dif­fer­ent and dif­fer­ent skills are needed.

When did you start pro-wrestling?

I STARTED pro-wrestling in 2013 and on day one I told my trainer I wanted to work with a ma­jor or­gan­i­sa­tion and I wanted to be the top talent in the world. I’m a lot closer to that than I was five years ago and in five years time I want to be a multi-style freestyle champ. I see my­self be­ing the top talent in pro-wrestling. It’s as sim­ple as that. I want to get to the top.

How did your nick­name the Pres­ti­gious One come about?

I USED to go by the name The Lo­cal Hero. It’s a cool char­ac­ter, but it doesn’t sound like a main win­ner and I re­alised to be the top in the busi­ness you need some­thing more.

I wanted some­thing a bit old school and that paid trib­ute to the old wrestling roots ... (laughs) and the Pres­ti­gious One sounds like some­one you should not mess with. You have be­come known for your mu­si­cal en­trances into the wrestling ring. How did that come about?

IT’S a way to con­nect with the au­di­ence and singing is some­thing that I can do for the rest of my life and the fans can get be­hind you.

I was in a band called Lost In Au­dio for 10 years be­fore WOS came along and they were both dreams of mine. I came out of univer­sity and was of­fered a grad­u­ate job, but turned it down to be a mu­si­cian.

How far did you take it?

WE once played the Pic­ture House in Ed­in­burgh and more than 1,000 peo­ple came to see the band. RCA Records, who had peo­ple like Justin Tim­ber­lake and the Foo Fight­ers, in­vited us to meet with them in New York at the fa­mous Sony Tower. We felt like this was it, but they told us ‘we re­ally like you, keep on do­ing what you’re do­ing and let’s come back’.

You needed to get a mil­lion hits or some­thing on YouTube. It’s weird be­cause my wrestling mu­sic videos prob­a­bly have 10 to 20 mil­lion hits now.

I never thought I would be go­ing down this route and I’m look­ing for­ward to tak­ing it to the next level. Maybe I’ll re­lease the songs, put them out there and have a bit of fun.

Do you have any pre-fight su­per­sti­tions or tra­di­tions?

I TRY my best not to be su­per­sti­tious. If I need to think about putting one knee pad on first or the other knee pad it just gets in the way. I stopped all that be­fore it started. It just gets in the way be­cause there is a small mar­gin for er­ror when you are out there and it messes with re­ac­tion time.

Have there been any in­juries along the way?

I HAVE been re­ally lucky. I have had no ma­jor in­juries. It’s just gen­eral wear and tear. I have been pretty for­tu­nate. I train smart and re­cov­ery is a big part of what I do.

How do you re­lax away from the spot­light?

I FIND it very hard to un­wind af­ter a match. I’ve very bad at it. I can’t just sit and watch TV. I of­ten play a video game to try and switch off.

I see my­self be­ing the top talent in pro-wrestling. It’s as sim­ple as that. WOS Wrestling’s Joe Hendry

Joe in the ring with Ram­page ●●The WOS Wrestling Tour be­gins on Jan­uary 18 and in­cludes dates at Northamp­ton’s Royal & Dern­gate and Stoke’s Vic­to­ria Hall.

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