By Katarina Waters
After a UK wrestler ended up in court this past March for giving his opponent ‘a receipt’ during a show, Katarina Waters takes a closer look at wrestling’s dubious history with accepted and violent revenge inside the squared circle. She also assesses how the fallout from this case has the very real potential to change pro wrestling forever.
THE SCOUT HUT on Cherry Grove in Ferndown, Dorset, England is the last place that most would expect as the site of one of the most important wrestling stories of the decade, if not ever. Yet on Saturday February 8th 2020, that’s exactly what it became. British wrestler ‘Jiving’ Jay Knox (33) was performing a match in front of a relatively small handful of fans, against trainee wrestler and his own student, Rob Wilson (32). Wilson, returning to wrestling after a long absence, was drafted into the contest last minute, after Knox’s
original opponent was unable to make the event. Despite initial apprehensions, Wilson agreed for the match to be ‘called in the
ring’, after his opponent and trainer assured him it would be fine.
The only call of importance to our story, however, is the one that Knox made out loud, several minutes before the bout’s conclusion. The call wasn’t an overly complex string of words, instructing the inexperienced Wilson to run, jump, duck or move. Rather, it was comprised of just two syllables, intended to issue a warning of what the less experienced man was about to receive. The word didn’t proclaim a manoeuvre, but rather a historic and well-known wrestling concept.
Uttered under Knox’s breath, the word was short and to the point – “receipt”. Within seconds of saying it, Knox (real name James Riley) sprung to his feet and kicked Wilson extremely hard in the face. The consequences for both men would ultimately be catastrophic.
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