In exactly two weeks time, Saraya Knight‘s Bellatrix promotion will return to action, headlined by the rematch of the stiff-as-all-hell Sammi Baynz vs Blue Nikita match from Bellatrix VIII back in March. If you remember, Sammi Baynz actually retained her RQW European Title in a one-on-one match with Blue Nikita, thanks to the interference of her manager Axl Lynch. An irate Nikita was then inserted into the unprecedented 30 women Rumble by way of compensation (a spot which was unable to be filled by the injured Skarlett), and she went on to win – securing herself a further shot at Baynz’ championship. The two will collide again on June 15th at Epic Studios in one of the headline matches at Bellatrix IX.
Also on the show is the return of the ‘Queen of the Ring’ tournament for the first time in almost two years, featuring eight of the top names in the promotion battling it out in a one night, single elimination tournament to be crowned the Queen. The defending ‘Queen’ is actually Destiny, who won the most recent edition way back at Bellatrix III in September 2012. On that evening, Destiny defeated Chanel, Lady Lory and Sweet Saraya in successive rounds to win, and she’ll have to contend with two of those names again in the 2014 version. We don’t yet know the first round matchups (they are due to be drawn live in the ring next weekend at a World Association of Wrestling event on June 8th in Costessey, Norfolk), but we do have the complete field, which is as follows.
• Bellatrix World Champion, Liberty: Coming off winning the World Title at Bellatrix VIII in the biggest match of her life, Liberty (right) has to be considered the hot favourite to win, though it’s also true to say she’s going to have a bigger target on her back than ever before. The title might not be on the line during tournament competition, but anybody who manages to get a decision over Liberty must assuredly be looking at getting a future title shot.
• Defending Queen of the Ring, Destiny: Destiny has worn the title of ‘Queen of the Ring’ with some pride, and you sense it’s not a title she’s ready to give up without a fight. “The referee’s nightmare” always has a plan too. She’s been making reference on social media recently to “getting her head back in the game” and bringing back “old school Destiny” – a thought which has to fill the rest of the field with some cause for concern. A motivated Destiny might well sweep the field again.
• Sweet Saraya: World traveller Saraya has been having the time of her life this year, wrestling on multiple continents – and although she may have recently lost the NHPW Indygurlz Australia Title she defended at the last show (to Mercedes Martinez), “The English Rose” is unlikely to want to go without honours for very long, especially with her daughter currently holding the WWE Divas Title. She might be the co-owner of Bellatrix, but she won’t be looking for any favours here – she’s plenty good enough to win this tournament.
• Penelope: We speculated that this could be a big breakout year for one of the shooting stars of the Bellatrix promotion, and remarked that she “is on the verge of being something really special” after running Saraya Knight close in their title match at Bellatrix VIII (right). Could the Queen of the Ring be it? Mind you, apart from the challenge of having to beat three different opponents in one night, what if one of them ends up *being* Saraya Knight again? There are questions still to be answered there, and depending on the draw and results, there’s a good chance we might see these two lock horns again.
• Lady Lory: Blue Nikita may have won the Bellatrix Rumble at the last show, but the last person she eliminated was Lory, who had entered at #4 and fought her way through almost the entire field. Not bad for someone who was making their return to the promotion after missing out on several shows. Lory lost in the semi finals of the Queen of the Ring tournament two years ago – and you know that this multiple time champion across Europe would love to make her mark in the UK. Lory’s knocking on the door of a big career-defining win in Bellatrix. Might this be it?
• Bacardi: She’s arguably the dark horse in the tournament, but they can be very dangerous. She too made her return as part of the 30 Woman Rumble at Bellatrix VIII after missing the previous two events, and has already signalled her intentions to win the tournament on social media. Internationally travelled and with 2014 being the tenth anniversary of her debut in wrestling, what better way to celebrate that anniversary than with a taste of royalty? Overlook her at your peril.
• Erin Angel: Erin is always one of the most popular and talented wrestlers on any Bellatrix event, and the former Bellatrix British Ladies Champion will be looking to bounce back from her title loss to Violet O’Hara on the last show with a strong showing here. Working in Erin’s favour is her versatility – she’s a perfect combination of old school British grappling and progressive high-flying, and with the possibility of meeting a number of different styles of opponent on the night, having that in your locker can only be a benefit.
• Skarlett: How do you think Skarlett (right) felt, sitting at home with an injury at Bellatrix VIII, watching her prime #29 spot in the Bellatrix Rumble get given away to Blue Nikita – only to see Nikita go on and win the whole match? The self-proclaimed “Bombshell from Hell” believes that she should have won the Rumble – and while there’s nothing she can do about events in the past, she’s redoubling her efforts to mark her return with a crown. “It’s high time I realised my potential”, she says – and I don’t think any of the Female Warriors will be hoping to draw a motivated Skarlett in the first round.
Tickets are available here for purchase online, or you can call the WAW/Bellatrix ticket line by phoning 07880 977 512 / 0800 046 2832. Don’t forget if you’re planning to be in the Norwich area that weekend that WAW are running their own “Epic Encounters 8” show in the same venue on June 14th, featuring amongst other attractions, a 40 man Rumble, plus Doug Williams vs Zak Knight for the WAW World Title. We can also confirm that both Epic Encounters 8 and Bellatrix IX will be made available for purchase as a VOD for those unable to attend live soon after the event.
— Stew Allen