Scots wrestler Drew McIntyre has become the first ever British WWE Champion, beating Brock Lesnar for the title.
The Ayrshire-born star took home the gold in the main event of WWE’s WrestleMania which aired overnight.
He had been due to compete in the match in front of thousands of fans from across the world at the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.
But the coronavirus outbreak meant that the event was pre-taped in front of no fans at the WWE Performance Centre in Orlando.
— WWE WrestleMania (@WrestleMania) April 6, 2020
McIntyre, nicknamed the Scottish psychopath, rose to prominence in his homeland through the likes of Glasgow-based Insane Championship Wrestling.
Originally from Prestwick, he worked his way up through various promotions in Scotland and the UK, before being signed to WWE in 2007.
He was named chairman Vince McMahon’s ‘chosen one’ in 2009 and eventually became the Intercontinental Champion.
He had matches with legends such as Matt Hardy and The Undertaker before slipping down the card and being released by the company 2014.
— ICW (@InsaneChampWres) April 6, 2020
McIntyre, competing under his real name Drew Galloway, returned to the independent scene, including a comeback to ICW.
Such was his success, he was re-signed to the WWE in 2017 and soon became the then developmental brand NXT’s men’s champion.
He made the move back to Monday Night Raw in 2018 and won the 2020 Royal Rumble, securing his WrestleMania date with former UFC champion Lesnar.
— Drew McIntyre (@DMcIntyreWWE) April 6, 2020
Fellow Scots wrestler Wolfgang tweeted: “For him, all his friends and family, those with us and those no longer here. Drew McIntyre became the WWE Champion tonight at #WrestleMania. Outstanding.”
Grado also congratulated his friend on Twitter, writing: “Scotland has a WWE Champion, think about that. Remember sitting in s****y ibis hotels all over UK working out how he’d get back into the big time and he done it – Proud of my bro. What a story.”
Joe Hendry tweeted: “I’m struggling to put into words, trying to describe how much Drew has done for British Wrestling and wrestling in general. He made everyone better.
“Thank you for everything. Seeing your hard work pay off is inspirational.”
McIntyre isn’t the only Scot currently holding a title in WWE. Glaswegian Nikki Cross is one half of the women’s tag-team champions, while Johnstone’s Kay Lee Ray holds the women’s title on the company’s NXT UK brand.
Wolfgang and Mark Coffey are NXT UK tag team champions, under the name Gallus.
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