Wrestlers whipped by local 'clowns'

Wrestlers whipped by local 'clowns' - 31st March 2004
Credit: The Daily Telegraph


What should have been a night of family fun at a suburban RSL degenerated into an brawl when two audience members took on an entire troupe of costume-clad wrestlers in their own ring.

Ironically billed as "the brawl in Bronte", the Ultimate Wrestling Alliance (UWA) show at Bronte RSL club last Saturday disintegrated into chaos after two men invaded the empty ring.

They pretended to wrestle, taunted the real wrestlers and then exchanged blows with them when they returned to the ring.

The UWA, which models its act on the US professional wrestling circuit, told officials they would never return to the club.

Bronte RSL secretary general Shane Dollimore vowed yesterday to have the troublemakers barred.

He said the night began well with a packed house, including about 100 children, cheering on the wrestlers.

During the second interval two members of the audience who had been throwing ice at and ridiculing the performers all night invaded the ring and began making rude gestures at the "real" wrestlers.

Several of the wrestlers returned and ejected them from the ring.

Punches were thrown, leaving one of the intruders bleeding from his forehead. The crowd of about 200 went crazy, with chairs overturned, women and children screaming and a second fight breaking out in the audience.

Four police cars and three ambulances attended the club, which police shut down for the night.

Police are reviewing the club's CCTV footage and video footage shot by the UWA to see if any charges should be laid.

A 26-year-old Bronte man and a 33-year-old South Coogee man were treated at the scene for minor injuries.

Mr Dollimore was angry yesterday at what he saw as the sabotaging of the club's family entertainment night.

"It was going alright until these clowns jumped in the ring," he said.

"I've been trying to change the demographic of the crowds we get here and make it into a place where people feel they can take the family.

"These two blokes, who were there with children themselves, have just ruined it for everyone.

"We should have had them thrown out earlier when they started heckling and throwing ice.

"They will be called before a meeting of the board and I'd like to see them banned.

"I've only been here nine months but I'm determined to change the character of the club."

Mr Dollimore emphasized that nobody was seriously hurt in the brawl and said he was disappointed so many police turned up and that the club was shut down for the night.

"We've handed over our CCTV footage to the police and I suppose they'll make something of that," he said.

A woman who said she was the fiancee of one of the wrestlers complained that the Bronte crowd was the roughest and most violent the UWA team had encountered.

"The western suburbs are nothing compared to this," she said.

"Out there they just sit there and watch the show but here these bloody idiots are chucking stuff and trying to punch on with the wrestlers."

Scott, who wrestles as Scarecrow, yesterday said he and the other performers were enraged by the invasion. "Those two blokes are just idiots."



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