Dragonmania: A conversation with wrestling stars Facade, Saigon Hunters & Team Manila

The Eurasian Dragon The Eurasian Dragon

FOX Sports Asia gets one-half of the SPW Southeast Asian Tag Team Champions, The Eurasian Dragon to speak with visiting wrestlers Facade, Team Manila and Saigon Hunters prior to the SPW Triple Thrill 3: SPW vs WORLD show.

This Friday, the eyes of the wrestling world will fall on Singapore Pro Wrestling (SPW) as their Triple Thrill series come to a close.

Following exciting Russian and Japanese wrestling invasions, SPW have blown their doors wide open to take on the world – making this one of the biggest collection of international wrestlers ever in Singapore history.

But before this momentous show, I caught up with the who’s who among the international wrestlers.

The Facade of it all

Hailing from Pennsylvania, American wrestler Facade made history recently by debuting on two established promotions, Impact Wrestling and Ring of Honor, within the span of a week!

Constantly evolving, Facade has become one of the most sought-after wrestlers in the world and is in town to take on local hero Black Arrow.

Eurasian Dragon: Welcome back to Singapore! How is it going?
Facade: I LOVE Singapore. Last time I was here, I got to make friends with the Merlion while watching everyone celebrate Chinese New Year.

ED: What was it like debuting on Impact Wrestling and Ring of Honor?
F: Impact was happenstance, while Ring of Honor was due to impressing at a camp alongside my girlfriend, Dani.

When I was away training prospective wrestlers in India, I stayed in touch with ROH. Upon coming home, I became the first wrestler to debut in Impact and ROH during the same week!

ED: You’ve mentioned training India wrestlers at The Great Khali’s academy, CWE. What were the best memories?
F: Apart from being very happy with my matches there, the best times were out of the ring with my students! They are a great bunch of people.

ED: You’ve faced current WWE Champion AJ Styles when he was the New Japan Pro Wrestling IWGP Champion, tell us something we don’t know about the Phenomenal One?
F: The first time round, I was totally off my game, not ready for the fact that he hits hard and fast.

The second time round, I beat Tomasso Chiampa, Matt Sydal and Chris Sabin in preparation. I could’ve beaten him the second time if it hadn’t been for interference from Jason Gory.

ED: You will be based in Asia for the next few months. What can fans expect from Facade?
F: Black Arrow will see how much I’ve grown in the past year, while fans will get their money’s worth due to my unique character and innovative hybrid in-ring style.

ED: Any words of advice for the growing Filipino and Vietnamese scenes?
F: Make memories, tell stories and always leave them wanting more!

The Hunters of Saigon

Photo courtesy of SPW

Consisting of Sid and Rocky, the Saigon Hunters are at the forefront of Vietnamese wrestling.

As the founders of the Saigon Pro Wrestling Club, the pair created a scene back in their homeland from scratch.

Eurasian Dragon: What challenges did you guys face starting the wrestling scene in Saigon?
Saigon Hunters: The general public still doesn’t have a clear idea on what pro wrestling is, so it is a long process of planting the seeds and watering it.

We’ve integrated puroresu taught by our two Japanese sensei, Fugofugo Yumeji and Ryoji Sai, and combined it with the willpower of the Vietnamese people.

ED: Not your first time here, Sid, so tell us more about your SPW history.
SH Sid: I first heard of SPW when I found a tag match on YouTube, and painted a bullseye on this promotion. I originally sourced you out for training stints here last year, especially the seminar conducted by WWE UK Champion Pete Dunne.

Now I’m back no longer a trainee, but as a challenger for your tag team championship belt.
SH Rocky: Earlier this year, I made my international debut at Gatoh Move Pro Wrestling in Thailand. I had a good time making new friends and discovering new cultures. But because of that, I wasn’t focused on my match 100 percent, and I lost.

This upcoming Friday, Sid and I are 100 percent ready to hunt Mighty Dragon down and take away your titles.
SH Sid: The bigger the hunt, the better the prize!

ED: Sure.

Robin Sane + Jake De Leon = Team Manila

Photo courtesy of Jake De Leon

Featuring representatives from two of the country’s biggest promotions, Team Manila is made up of Philippines Wrestling Revolution’s (PWR) Jake De Leon and Manila Wrestling Federation’s (MWF) Robin Sane.

Jake De Leon, the self-dubbed Mr Philippines Wrestling, is known for his uncanny in-ring ability. While high-flyer Robin Sane have charmed audiences with electrifying performances which are chock full of heart.

They are due to take on local tag team, The Horrors – comprising of Dr Gore and Da Butcherman.

ED: Excited to be in town?
Robin Sane:
I am so excited as this is not just my international debut, but also my first time flying overseas.

Many say this is a dream Filipino tag team, as we are top guys in our respective promotions.
Jake De Leon: It is my first time in Singapore too, and I’ll be honest, I would have chosen to pair with my best amigo, PWR Tag Champion John Sebastian.

But I cannot deny the heart, skill and athleticism that may take Robin Sane to the top of Philippine wrestling. End of the day, we are trying to beat The Horrors due to our common love for the Philippines!

ED: What differentiates you guys?
RS: JDL is a technical wizard and he’s known as Mr Philippine Wrestling for a reason.

I prefer flying around. I have one thing he doesn’t though, and that’s the 450 splash in my arsenal!

ED: What are your favourite horror movies?
RS: I prefer horror games like Resident Evil and Silent Hill.
JDL: Casper the Friendly Ghost. Horror movie, right?

ED: Switching gears; JDL, you caught my eye when I saw you face veteran Canadian Billy Suede. I knew you were gonna be big news.
JDL: When Billy Suede came to PWR in 2017, I knew I had to face him. We had a darn good bout at PWR’s Wrevolution X, which pretty much opened everyone’s eyes in Philippine wrestling.

We all have the power to take our local brands to the forefront of the industry!
RS: Likewise, facing The Statement, former WWE star Ho Ho Lun and you (Eurasian Dragon); these names are the best in Southeast Asia now.

I like to be in first place all the time. Soon, I’ll manage to takeover the wrestling scene as one of the top names myself.

ED: How about The Horrors, do they scare you?
JDL: One is a scary doctor while the other one hacks and slashes?

Those weapons will not be tolerated in professional wrestling! Our esteemed referee will not allow it!
RS: It is more surreal that JDL and I are teaming up! I assure all fans that I am 450 percent prepared for an intense match and exciting upset victory.


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