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Royal Ramblings Meets Rhia O'Reilly

Rhia O'Reilly is one of the most sought-after, talented and impressive wrestlers in the world. A regular with Shimmer, Shine, Pro-Wrestling:Eve and Bellatrix, O'Reilly has already proved her worth as a top-flight competitor...

Rhia O'Reilly is one of the most sought-after, talented and impressive wrestlers in the world. A regular with Shimmer, Shine, Pro-Wrestling:Eve and Bellatrix, O'Reilly has already proved her worth as a top-flight competitor. As rumours abound that WWE is soon to be holding its own women's tournament, its no surprise that the name on everyone's lips is O'Reilly's. If we were gamblers, we'd be betting big on a bright future for Rhia. To find out more about her, read on...

For wrestling fans who don't know about Rhia O'Reilly tell us about you...

I'm originally from Northern Ireland. I moved to England, went to university and didn't know what I wanted to do with my life so I handed in my notice at my job and said "Hey, I love working here but I'm going to move to Canada and become a professional wrestler". They laughed at me but that's what I did. I went to Canada and trained with Lance Storm and loved it. It was intensive training every day and then I came back to the UK and began my illustrious career as a wrestler.

Do you have any good stories from Lance Storm's academy?

If I told you he'd probably beat me up..! He's a really great trainer, he's very patient and obviously very knowledgeable - he's wrestled all over the world. He's wrestled so many amazing people, you couldn't ask for someone better to learn from. The great thing is that he stays in touch. He still watches all our matches every time we're on, he's our champion on social media and I think he's a lot funnier than people realise. Everyone thinks he's a very straight guy but he's funny!

Well, If we can be serious for a minute..... You moved fairly quickly into Shimmer, how did that come about?

When I started wrestling, my dream was to be in Shimmer. That was my big wrestling goal, my five year plan. I'd been wrestling maybe a year and there was a podcast and a website in the UK called Ringbelles run by two awesome guys, Stew Allen and Lee Burton. They were big Shimmer fans and they'd go out and watch the shows and I became good friends with them - Stew was from Northern Ireland. He once said "why don't you come with us?" and as a big super-mark ( not care...) I thought "that would be the best thing ever!" So I bought my ticket and Stew talked to Dave Prazak who is the promoter for Shimmer and said "Hey, I'm bringing this girl over, is there any chance you can put her on the show?". He said yes for whatever reason! A favour to Stew? I don't know but I got to wrestle on the pre-show. I hung out with all the girls backstage and learned so, so much and had an amazing trip. I was thanking Dave and he asked if I wanted to come back. I was like "What!?", "Yes, Yes Please!" and then I got to go back in my debut on St Patrick's Day against the artist formerly known as Courtney Rush as a heel - in Chicago where they love Irish people, so that was interesting. The rest is history.

You've wrestled back in the UK with XWA, Progress and others - how's the scene changed?

Dramatically. When I started training over here there were no other girls at my training school. I didn't meet another female wrestler until my very first training match. Because there were no other girls, the promoter brought in Jetta. For people that don't know the history of Jetta, she's back wrestling now but go look her up, its amazing. But I'd never really met another female wrestler before then. I made my debut on the very first Pro-Wrestling:Eve show which was the first time I'd met all those women and it was very overwhelming. A lot of shows were happening and obviously I was very new but I wasn't necessarily wrestling trained wrestlers, I was wrestling wrestlers girlfriends and others. Now we have a hotbed of wrestling talent so its changed dramatically. Its an exciting time to be part of the scene.

Rumours abound that WWE is to run a womens show, might you be on it?

Well I'd say its inevitable there's going to be British women on that show. There are so many talented women here that form part of the global resurgence in women's wrestling that there's definitely going to be women from this country representing on their shows - and that's just the beginning. It's so fantastic to see Nikki Cross doing so well in NXT and obviously Paige before that. I think now there's a bigger window of opportunity for women from all over the world to be competing in the televised companies.

Where can we see you next?

Rhia O'Reilly is a massive do-gooder so I'm doing a lot of work with Crisis at Christmas this month (#CrisisXmas). People should support and donate - its less than £23 to put someone up for the night, so a big plug for that. Otherwise, just keep an eye on my social media for what's coming next....

Follow Rhia not just on social media but at live events where you can. An amazing talent and one to be watched...

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