Shazza McKenzie is an Australian Professional Wrestler who has wrestled internationally for a number of promotions including Pro Wrestling Women’s Alliance, Shimmer and Shine Wrestling in Australia, the United States and Canada. She even got to wrestle her fellow Australian Emma (Tenille Dashwood) in a televised WWE NXT match.
Shazza has held a number of titles worldwide, and talks about her career to date, growing up as a fan in Australia, and gives advice for anyone interested in a career in Wrestling.
Tell us how you got started – When did you first decide to get into Wrestling?
Wrestling wasn’t big in Australia growing up and it still isn’t that big, however thankfully it is growing. I started watching wrestling as a teenager and got hooked instantly. As soon as I had enough money to start training I found the nearest school and signed up.
Where did you go to train and how did you feel taking your first bumps?
I started training at AWF in September 2007 and then from January 2009 I’ve trained regularly with Pro Wrestling Academy run by Madison Eagles, Robbie Eagles and Mick Moretti. I remember it taking a lot of mental preparation to throw myself into the ground and I made sure I got a massage the next day to keep me moving.
You have held a number of titles in different countries, when you think of the matches you won to get the titles which one stands out?
The match where I won the PWA Tag Team Championships with Big Fudge stands out to me. It was special because going into it we knew that it would be Instagraham’s last match before moving to England. It was also the first time I stood across the ring from my fiancé Unsocial Jordan so there was a lot of fun and meaningful moments throughout the match.
Tell us your thoughts on the so-called ‘Women’s Revolution’ in Wrestling which has made lots of mainstream news in recent years.
I don’t like to overly use the term Women’s Revolution because that implies that we changed and got better, whereas the girls in WWE and on the indies always had the ability to have the matches they’re having now but were never given the time and opportunity. I think of how much this industry has changed when it comes to women in the time I’ve been doing it and it’s crazy to think how many more open doors the next generation will have.
You wrestled Emma/Tenille Dashwood at NXT in 2015, a re-match of her last match in Australia before she signed with WWE. How was that, and are there any other Australian talents that we should be looking out for?
I absolutely love wrestling Tenille and I hope now that she’s working independently that we will get the opportunity to wrestle again. To me Jessica Troy is a huge star in the making. I want the world to see her because she’s only just getting started and she’s already so good.
What’s your favourite match?
Mine: Vs. Madison Eagles House Of Hardcore Sydney 2017
Others: Team Uppercut Vs. Masters Of 1000 Holds King Of Trios 2009
Who inspires you?
My trainers inspire and motivate me daily so, Madison and Robbie Eagles. I also get huge inspiration from Billie Kay and Peyton Royce because I’ve known them since I first started so seeing how far they’ve come and what they’ve accomplished helps keep me motivated on the hustle.
Tell us about a typical day in your life.
Well I live in Australia and the cost of living here is ridiculous so I can’t wrestle full time. My normal week day I wake up at 4am and go to the gym, then head to work for 8 hours and then off to Wrestling training til 9pm. Go home, sleep and repeat again.
You have already achieved so much in your career, what do you want to achieve next?
I want to do this for a living so ideally I’d like to help grow the Australian Wrestling scene to a point where the men and women in it don’t have to have a second job.
If you’re about to embark on this journey then be prepared for a bumpy ride. It takes a lot of time, effort and money to get somewhere but you’ll have a blast along the way. Also, go to the gym – the goal is usually to make people chuck their first session so if your fit you’ll survive.
How can readers keep track of your progress?