Dazzler Dunlop: Chapter 12 - The Sydney Wrestling Scene

Dazzler Dunlop: Chapter 12 - The Sydney Wrestling Scene


Shawline Publishing Group

Shawline Publishing Group: DAZZLER DUNLOPBy Ken Dunlop


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Ken Dunlop

"Like any other sport, wrestling’s popularity was heavily dependent on fan support, and thankfully, we had some of the best around. The Sydney scene was full of loyal fans who would travel not just around Sydney but all over New South Wales to attend shows, and we always chatted to them before and after shows. We got to know a lot of them by their first names and there were some great characters like Clary, Gaetano, ‘One-ball’ Ken, Shirley, Les Kent, Skull, Rocky, Happy Humphrey, James Stanios, Paul Robinson, Sandy and Rebecca, Mark Harvey, and John Shelvey. I even attended the wedding of one fan: Steven Ditz whom I had met through another fan (Sue Chuter from Melbourne). I developed personal friendships with a number of Sydney fans over the years and I’m lucky to be still friends with them today, even long after my retirement. Friends like Ed Lock, Martin Heppell, Dave Reck , and Dann Leonard were huge fans and were instrumental in helping me get this book going. Others like Graham ‘Fozzy’ Young ended up in the business, wrestling for a year or two before finding his niche as a well-respected referee and going on to have a great twenty-year career. Then there were fans like Jolene Taylor and her mum and grandmother, Alan Griffiths, Kirk and Colleen Beattie, Stephen Chard , The Gleeson family, Greg Tingle, and Andy Raymond. Greg is a journalist with several websites dedicated to sports and Andy is a famous sports broadcaster who had a 25-year career with Foxtel and now runs his own sports podcasts. Obviously, each state has their own loyal fanbase, which the wrestlers really appreciate, but I think Sydney’s fans are the best."

Greg Tingle

Great stuff Ken...I think I may have just sped-read my favourite chapter of the book. It's about fans and supporters, and well of course those prepared to risk their neck, back and life to entertain the masses for an honest carney living. I will always respect every wrestler for just being prepared to get in the wrestling ring and give it a go. In a world of critics where everyone is an expert, there's only so many who will actually become a professional wrestler and be able to enjoy a sustainable career. Much respect, and thanks for the memories.


Australian pro wrestling great Ken 'Dazzler' Dunlop releases long awaited tell-all book -
October 2021


Just ask Ken “Dazzler” Dunlop, whose Australian professional wrestling career coincided with the AIDS crisis and when homosexuality was not only still taboo but also a criminal act. In the first ever autobiography by an Australian professional wrestler, the life and times of an out-and-proud wrestling legend and a member of the Australian professional Wrestling Hall of Fame are candidly laid out in this wonderful new memoir.

Ken “Dazzler” Dunlop is a man who dedicated 24 years to the sport of professional wrestling. Despite his small stature, Ken proved his toughness and resilience by bodyslamming and clotheslining his way to a memorable 24-year Hall of Fame career in Australia and abroad with superstars the likes of Andre the Giant and Mario Milano. Always striving to be the best that he could be, no matter what…Every decision centred around his wrestling career and those who supported him...During his career he also taught many young men to wrestle and became a mentor in their lives as they excelled beyond even their own expectations.

From his humble beginnings as a mummy’s boy in rural Victoria to his crazy life as an out-and-proud gay man in Australia’s Sin City, there were moments of triumph, laughter, mayhem, and plenty of tears. These are the no-holds-barred stories of a bona fide wrestling pioneer who did it all with passion, loyalty, and a no-nonsense honesty.

This is the autobiography of Australian Wrestling Legend and Hall of Fame Inductee, Ken “Dazzler” Dunlop.

“A true character and legend of the most entertaining and demanding sport in the world…Ken has dreamed it, lived and loved it with everything he is as a champion and as a person…this is a wonderfully honest and humbled sharing of his own story…Marvellous and inspiring…” Brian, Indiebook reviewer


Shawline Publishing Group


Ken grew up in Moe, near the Gippsland area of Victoria, before moving to Melbourne and discovering the addiction that would change his life forever - professional wrestling. Ken started training to be a wrestler in 1977, at 16 years old, and had his first match in 1978. His professional career spanned 23 years, wrestling all around the continent, and a successful tour of the UK in 1992. He retired one month shy of his 40th birthday in October of 2000. Ken is now happy and retired, living a simple life in Sydney with his husband of 18 years.



Media Man

Interview: Ken Dunlop - Retired professional wrestler and businessman (Part 1) - July 2017

Interview: Ken Dunlop - Retired professional wrestler and businessman (Part 2) - August 2017