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TAG TEAM GRUDGE MATCH
Dick & Balls vs. The Hotrodz w/ Moneybags Malone
The DICK & BALLS vs. HOTRODZ saga has been at the forefront of the ZERO1 tag division since the beginnings of its existence as the two young teams battled to establish themselves as the best in the country. Fast forward to early 2013 and their feud was again re-ignited. It was DICK & BALLS’ manager MONEYBAGS MALONE who provided the gas to the flame as he jumped ship and joined THE HOTRODZ, turning his back on his former allies. MONEYBAGS would then go on to lead his new team to victory, however seemed surprise when his former clients came back looking for revenge at last month’s REVOLUTION. DICK & BALLS have made the challenge for one final rematch and their wish was granted by COMMISSIONER TOM CHOCOLATE.
Much has happened since the early days and all 4 have grown considerably. Whilst THE HOTRODZ have the experience, DICK & BALLS will be bringing plenty of spite as they attempt to settle the score against their oldest rivals.
‘Jag’ Hartley Jackson (SA) vs. Marcius Pitt (WA)
GROUND ZERO just got a whole lot bigger as two of Australia’s best will meet for the first time ever! South Australian wrestling legend HARTLEY JACKSON is coming off a couple of failed attempts at regaining the AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP from RYAN EAGLES. The controversy surrounding these matches has seemingly lit a fuse under JACKSON who believes that he is ready to take his position back at the top.
Standing in his way will be former EPW Champion out of Perth, MARCIUS PITT. Like JACKSON, PITT is no stranger to travelling the globe. He is a world class talent who has taken it to the very best that ZERO1 has to offer over the past year. In fact, PITT and JACKSON met in the huge 6-man tag main event at January’s INTERSTATE WARFARE, which saw PITT come out on top with an F-5. Will JACKSON meet the same fate on July 13th or will he prove that he is still the elite fighter that he has been recognised as over the past 15 years?This is a high stakes match as the winner will be positioning himself right near the top of the AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP contender’s rankings.
Main Event: PICK YOUR POISON SERIES
Robby Heart vs. ‘The Samoan Savage’ Jonah Rock
Our main event of the evening will see ROBBY HEART take on ROCKY MENERO’s selected opponent, JONAH ROCK! This promises to be an intense battle between 2 of Australia’s best and most travelled wrestlers.
JONAH ROCK returned to ZERO1 earlier this year with destruction on his mind. He has systematically taken apart all who have come into his path. However it was a 3 month tour with PRO WRESTLING NOAH in JAPAN recently that saw the Samoan destroyer take his game to new levels. ROCK fought toe to toe with some of Japan’s greats such as KENTA, NAOMICHI MARUFUJI and KENSUKE SASAKI earning the respect of the nation. ROCK has his eyes set on ZERO1’s top prize held by RYAN EAGLES, but first will be aiming to take out a former 2 time Australian National Champion.
2013 has been an up and down year for ROBBY HEART. Whilst he has been on top of his game, completing his 2nd tour of JAPAN with ZERO1 by impressing in the prestigious TEN-KAICHI JUNIOR HEAVYWEIGHT TOURNAMENT, his time in Adelaide has told a different story. On a pathway to a championship rematch with RYAN EAGLES, ROBBY HEART encountered the beginnings of AISTON INCORPORATED. The new faction went on to welcome BRUCE ‘HAVOK’ MILLS and ROCKY MENERO, which took HEART’s attention, and then eventually took his title opportunity away. With ROBBY HEART not being eligible for title contendership until 2014, he now has nothing to lose. After defeating HAVOK at May’s REVOLUTION, ROBBY HEART has his cross hairs focused on ROCKY MENERO and claims that he will stop at nothing to send him back into retirement.
Whilst ROBBY HEART prepares for a likely faceoff with ROCKY MENERO later in the year, he must first get ready for JONAH ROCK. This match sees two men who have conquered in both Australia and Japan face off in a battle of pride. You will not want to miss this epic showdown!
Whilst not made public to the fans, ZERO1 has always worked on a rankings system that seeds all of its competitors based on win/loss records and performance in ZERO1, as well as other affiliated promotions in both Australia and Japan. Any victories or losses of dubious nature will not hold the same weight as a decisive victory. Level of opponent and dominance will also play a part. We have decided to bring in some transparency to the public and therefore will be uploading the rankings after each event.
The list features the 5 top contenders as decided by ZERO1 officials. We will also be publishing a further 5 ‘notable mentions’ who perhaps require an important win over a high level opponent to place themselves back in contendership.
Ryan Eagles became the Australian National Champion in June 2012 and has since successfully defended the Championship on 5 occasions. His next challenger is unknown although with Jayson Cooper still holding a guaranteed title match, this may be the next option.
Robby Heart’s 2 losses earlier in the year came after a collection of controversial interferences from Aiston Incorporated. Heart made up for this with a victory over Havok and Rocky Menero in tag team action at May’s REVOLUTION. However a stipulation granted n Heart’s early loss to Havok means that the former champ will not be eligible for title contendership until March, 2014.
The only defeat that Slater has tasted in the past 2 years has come from the current champion Ryan Eagles. With Heart out of contention, Slater holds the prime position for a championship rematch; however an injury will force him out of action until September which may affect his ranking slightly.
Many believe that Jag should be the rightful Australian National Champion right now, but alas it was not to be after two unsuccessful title matches over the past couple of events. A win over Marcius Pitt at GROUND ZERO should propel Jackson near the top spot, whilst a loss may force him out of contendership.
Whilst Havok lost to Robby Heart and Damian Slater in last month’s tag team grudge match, his victory over Robby Heart in their Last Man Standing encounter back in March keeps him in the running. The only issue is that the current champion is his fellow Aiston Incorporated comrade Ryan Eagles, which would make things interesting if Havok can get back in winning form.
Whilst Jonah Rock has only been back in ZERO1 for a limited space of time, his sheer dominance affords him the final contendership position for June. After systematically destroying Pat Graham at May’s REVOLUTION, as well as his success in Japan for Pro Wrestling NOAH, Rock seems headed straight to the top if he can continue his path of destruction. A victory over a higher level opponent will be required if he is to reach the top of the rankings.
Notable mentions: Wreckin’ Ball, Robbie Eagles, Rocky Menero, Marcius Pitt, Chris Vice
When we heard that a wrestler from ZERO1 JAPAN would be making his Australian debut, we didn’t know what to expect. We have now received word that GROUND ZERO will see the ‘debut’ of TIM EDISON! Of course, most would know TIM EDISON as the alter ego used in Japan by Queenslander AJ ISTRIA, however apparently EDISON claims no knowledge of his apparent doppelganger.
I am very proud to represent ZERO1 Japan in Australia. I plan to bring fighting spirit to the Australian people and rise to the top as I have done in the land of the rising sun. I was raised in Australia, and people tell me I look like one of your own fighters, ‘AJ Istria’. However I can assure you that I am not AJ Istria. I am Tim! T-I-M! Arigatou gozaimasu!
EDISON found plenty of success overseas taking on some of Japan’s greats such as MASATO TANAKA and SHINJIRO OTANI and plans on bringing this success back to Adelaide with ZERO1. We are yet to hear word on his opponent for July 13th but wish ISTRIA…. EDISON, all the best with his big ‘debut’! Below is a video from his latest tour of Japan…
We caught up for a chat with one of Australia’s newest citizens, formerly based out of New Zealand, Link Barnett. Barnett spent several years wrestling in his homeland of Auckland before moving to Adelaide to pursue the art of professional wrestling. The high flying young talent made his official debut at last month’s REVOLUTION and was all too keen to share his thoughts and introduce the world to ‘The Kiwi Bullet’.
Where did you get your start in wrestling?I got my start in wrestling with Mania Pro Wrestling in Auckland, New Zealand. I used to travel up to Auckland from Napier, and train with Mania whenever I got the chance. By the time I’d finished high school, and made a move to Auckland to live, Mania was reborn as Impact Pro Wrestling, where I made my debut, and have wrestled the majority of my career until this year.
What are your first memories of pro wrestling?
I remember watching WWF sporadically in the late 80′s and early 90′s, and loving it every time I did. I remember liking guys who wore bright, fluoro colours (the Rockers, Ultimate Warrior, the Hart Foundation). But the moment where I realised that wrestling was the greatest thing going, and started my life-long obsession with it, was when a school friend of mine invited me over go his for a weekend to jump on his trampoline and watch wrestling videos. We hired out WrestleMania X and King of the Ring ’94 (new releases at the time), and they absolutely blew my young, impressionable mind (particularly the Bret Hart vs Owen Hart, Razor Ramon vs Shawn Michaels and Owen Hart vs 123 Kid matches). The trampoline was fun too.
Who have been some of your biggest influences both growing up and now?
As a bit of a follow on to the above question, a few years after I got stuck into wrestling, WCW started airing on New Zealand free-to-air TV. The very first match shown was Ultimo Dragon vs Psicosis. My mind was blown again. The Cruiserweight division of WCW was (and kinda still is) probably my greatest influence as far as what I wanted to be. Guys like Dragon, Psicosis, Rey Mysterio Jr., Chris Benoit, Steven Regal, Dean Malenko, Chris Jericho, Alex Wright, Juventud Guererra, Eddie Guerrero, La Parka, Billy Kidman, Hector Garza… (I could probably go for another half a page or so) were/are big influences on my style and knowledge of wrestling. In more recent years, I’ve been a keen follower of the Japanese Jr. Heavyweight scene. A few of my favourites now are Kota Ibushi, Naomichi Marufuji, Masato Yoshino, Prince Devitt, Kenny Omega, KENTA, CIMA, Dragon Kid, PAC… (you’ve got me started again…)
If you weren’t a Professional Wrestler, what would you be?
Yikes! I’d hate to think…
Well, my other, other job is refereeing Roller Derby. I’ve been doing that when I can (ie. when not wrestling) for a few years. Heaven forbid if I’m not able to wrestle, I’d do that more. I’ve also dabbled in media creation, and that’s always tickled my fancy. Other obscure pipe-dream jobs would include being a travel writer, a stunt person, or something where I get to make a healthy living via running around doing jumps and flips, somehow.
I am happy listening to a ridiculously wide variety of music. As an example, I’ll list out the first five bands that turn up on shuffle: Enter Shikari (trance-core), G-Dragon (K-Pop), Anamanaguchi (8-bit pop-rock), The Samurai Pizza Cats theme song (Samurai Pizza Cats theme song), Battles (…they sound like Battles). Did I mention I like music?
The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Akira, Scott Pilgrim vs the World, Snatch, The Matrix trilogy, Marx Bros. movies, the Goonies, Gremlins, anything Studio Ghibli makes, Star Wars, Kill Bill, Battle Royale, Monty Python films, the Back to the Future trilogy, Tron (original and Legacy), Crows Zero, Ghostbusters, Animalympics, Mortal Kombat, the Last Starfighter, most movies starring Jackie Chan, Koyaanisqatsi (and the like), Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, Robocop, The Land Before Time, Predator…
These are the first ones that come to mind. Did you want more? I could name more…
Worst Injury in wrestling?
Excuse me while I knock on the largest tree I can find. I’ve never had an injury keep me from the ring. I’ve had my face and nose bloodied up a few times, strained some ligaments in my shoulder, but that’s about it. I fear I’m overdue something horrendous…
What has been your greatest accomplishment in your career so far?
Not getting injured!
The only title I’ve held in my career thus far is the IPW Tag Team Championship. But above and beyond that, just being able to go out to the ring, present myself to the fullest of my abilities. And prove my worth to the fans, and myself, is something I don’t take for granted.
Who have been your favourite opponents?
Through wrestling in New Zealand and Impact Pro Wrestling for the majority of my career, some of the names I’ve come up against frequently, to explosive encounters include ‘The Deal’ Dal Knox, Kingi, my former tag-team partner Liger, Brian St. James, and perhaps most notable, Liam Fury.
You moved to Adelaide early in 2013 to expand your horizons. How has the training experience been at ZERO1 thus far?
The saying “to become who you want to be, you must change who you are” I think sums up succinctly what this year has been for me. After getting a taste of what ZERO1 was all about last year, I made the choice to challenge myself in about as immersive a way possible. It has been tough, it has been gruelling, but the results will justify it all.
List 3 wrestlers you’d like to face in the future and why?
Travis Banks: For having been wrestling in New Zealand for so long, Travis is about the only guy I never got a decent opportunity at facing. As the last IPW champion, a match against him would be a great show of how I stand in the scheme of New Zealand wrestlers in the world today.
Robbie Eagles: I’d heard a lot of buzz from over the ditch about him in the last few years. Watching him where and when I could. I managed to watch him live in March at ZERO1, and he certainly lives up to the hype. Probably Australia’s premiere Jr. Heavyweight wrestler. I think a Kiwi vs Eagle, trans-Tasman battle could be one to remember.
Damian Slater: As much as I’m probably known for my explosive, agile, high-flying style, what I like just as much (if not more), is a solid, technical, hold-for-hold game of human chess. Having trained under Slater for the last few months, I think the two of us could put on a good old-fashioned grappling exchange. Wrestling at its core.
What are your plans for the remainder of 2013 and beyond?
It’s good to have gotten my first full match for ZERO1 under my belt. Unfortunately a loss for AJ Istria and myself, but a start none-the-less. Now I want to build on that, establish myself within ZERO1, and gather some momentum and wins. And while ZERO1 is my new home, I’d love to soon make my way around this country, and show what this ‘Kiwi Bullet’ can do!
Well thankyou for your time and we wish you the best of luck in your future with ZERO1.
Wait, what? That’s it? You’re not even going to ask me about video games?? Cause I bloody love video games! Do you want me to make you a list of stuff I’m currently playing? Or stuff I’ve finished more than twice? ‘Cause I will….. Also, if you could please add “video game/anime voice actor, professional video game player” to the line about obscure pipe dream other jobs, that’d be swell too.
HOTRODZ OPEN CHALLENGE
The Hotrodz w/ Moneybags Malone vs. ‘The Kiwi Bullet’ Link Barnett & ???
Love them or hate them, THE HOTRODZ have become synonymous with tag team wrestling in ZERO1. Whilst many teams have come and gone, GREG and JOEY GRAHAM have stuck together and evolved from two young resilient up and comers to one of the cockiest duos that Australian wrestling has ever seen. Needless to say, tag team competition has fallen to the way side as of late as many ZERO1 superstars have focused on taking the Australian National Championship from RYAN EAGLES. So as a result, THE HOTRODZ have issued an open challenge to “any two peasants” who want to make a name for themselves in the tag team division.
Enter ‘The Kiwi Bullet’ LINK BARNETT. Having built his career in his original home of Auckland with IMPACT PRO WRESTLING, LINK is on a mission to make an impact of his own in Australia. ZERO1 fans would have seen BARNETT debut in the WILDCARD BATTLE ROYALE at Thebarton Theatre last November, but since then he has moved to Adelaide, training under DAMIAN SLATER and HARTLEY JACKSON. Most of LINK’s success has come as a long-time New Zealand Tag Team Champion where fans saw his explosive style complimented by a strange quirkiness. In fact when we caught up with the man himself to ask about his plans for REVOLUTION, this is what he had to say.
“All I ever wanted in life was to become anime. I figure that ZERO1 is the best chance I have of heading to Japan and making that dream a reality. Until then I’ve been spending most of my days on Chat Roulette trying to find a tag team partner, but so far no luck. I even put a ‘seeking likeminded tag team companion’ ad in the paper, but the only calls I received sounded like heavy breathing before being disconnected. I think my phone’s buggered.”
As for BARNETT’s tag team partner, apparently one HAS been found, but refuses to reveal himself until the night. All that we have been told is that he is the “best kept secret in Pro Wrestling”. So who else will answer the challenge and bring the fight to THE HOTRODZ?
Marcius Pitt (WA) vs. Wreckin’ Ball (SA) w/ ‘Dirty’ Dick Donovan
In a first time ever match, two of the biggest bruisers from Perth and Adelaide will meet in a State of Origin affair. Current EPW Champion MARCIUS PITT returns to Adelaide after a successful run in Texas with Booker T’s REALITY OF WRESTLING promotion. With his accolades increasing by the month, PITT is on a mission to conquer ZERO1 and bring the AUSTRALIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP west again. The first and only time the Championship made it to Perth was in 2008 when MIKEY NICHOLLS was crowned the first rightful holder.
His opponent WRECKIN’ BALL has also recently returned from overseas, after his 2nd stint with ZERO1 in Japan. WRECKIN’ BALL has developed a ‘take no prisoners’ approach, accepting all challengers with little regard for himself or his opponents. ‘BALLS’ even stood toe to toe with the legend SABU showing that fear was not a word in his repertoire. At ZERO TOLERANCE in March, WRECKIN’ BALL and his partner in DICK & BALLS, ‘Dirty’ DICK DONOVAN were stabbed in the back by their former manager MONEYBAGS MALONE who decided to jump ship and join THE HOTRODZ.
WRECKIN’ BALL has a tough task ahead of him but will need to focus his rage in the right direction if he has a chance at overcoming the EPW Champion. For MARCIUS PITT this could be his launching pad to dual gold.
Rocky Menero changed the landscape of ZERO1 at March’s ZERO TOLERANCE event. There has still been an aura of uncertainty as to why he decided to attack Robby Heart and become the next soldier for Aiston Incorporated. After plenty of persistence, ZERO1 lead announcer Graham Adams recently had a chance to catch up with Rocky Menero before this Saturday’s REVOLUTION event. Adams discussed Rocky’s reason for returning and aligning himself with Mark Aiston’s ‘Aiston Incorporated’ faction. Here is the transcript from the brief interview…
GA: Well first things first, what made you retire from Pro Wrestling back in 2011?
RM: What forced me to “retire” was a serious neck injury I was going through at that stage but like I said at the time, I wasn’t gone forever, just gone for a while…
GA: What or who was it that lured you back out of retirement?
RM: Well, as wrestling tradition goes, I didn’t stay away for long… Zero 1 asked me to come back early 2012 to take part in the Col Dervany tribute show. The honour of paying my respects to the man who trained me and to kick the crap out of Hartley Jackson was the classic “offer I couldn’t refuse”.
Now naturally I impressed a lot of people with my performance and was invited back again to take on Damian Slater in the Fighting Spirit Challenge but we don’t need to get into that…
GA: At ZERO TOLERANCE you assaulted Robby Heart and seemingly aligned yourself with Mark Aiston’s ‘Aiston Incorporated’. Why did you take a noble invitation by ZERO1 to officiate an important match and throw it back in their faces?
RM: First of all, check your tone, or I’ll jam that little microphone down your throat kid.. There is nothing noble about getting a guy of my high quality standard to referee matches ok, it’s beneath me. And as for why I attacked poor little Robby Heart and joined Aiston Incorporated, I’m not some stupid Bond villain that’s going to give away the master plan.
I can tell you this though, big things are about to happen in Zero 1 for myself and the rest of the AI boys, everything I do is for a reason and its going to be something you can’t afford to miss…
GA: Do you have anything to say to the fans who think that it’s jealousy that provoked the attack on Robby?
RM: Yeah, I say interview over. Peace.