More names announced for the Mae Young Classic [June 22nd, 2017]
I keep getting more and more excited as more names get added to the inaugural Mae Young Classic; an all-women tournament being held by the WWE featuring NXT and international talents. So far, NXT wrestlers Lacey Evans and Sarah Logan were announced, along with Progress Women’s Champion Toni Storm and CMLL & AAA star
Princesa Sugehit from Mexico were announced last week. This week’s announcements include some big names for the tournament being held on July 14th, 2017.
Tessa Blanchard, the daughter of Four Horsemen member Tully Blanchard, is among the five most recently announced. Blanchard has been tearing up the indie scene for the last several years, taking on Sarah Logan for example numerous times, but also competing in Stardom, WCPW, Shimmer, and Queens Of Combat. Also added to the tournament is Abbey Laith, known more popularly in the indies as Kimber Lee. Laith is a wrestler that, for the last several years, people have asked, “Why isn’t she signed yet?” A former CHIKARA Grand Champion, Laith has traveled across the globe, wrestling for every noteworthy wrestling company there is besides those which are televised such as the WWE, where she’s currently under contract.
Known to fans of international wrestling as The Alpha Female, Jazzy Gilbert (pictured, top) is one of professional wrestling’s most dominating females. Standing at 6′1″, Gilbert towers over most fellow-competitors, and has reigned in the likes of TNA and Stardom, where she defeated Kairi Hoji, Io Shirai, and Dark Angel in the Stardom 5STAR Grand Prix tournament. Not to mention she has a mixed martial arts background, and does fellow entry
Taynara Conti. A new talent to the WWE and professional wrestling in general, Conti is a 22-year old judo expert, which may be a dream encounter to see her take on Gilbert in singles action.
Rounding out the new group is Kavita Devi of India. Trained by former World Heavyweight Champion The Great Khali, Devi is the first female wrestler from India to compete in the WWE, and is looking to make a mark in the Mae Young Classic.
If you haven’t yet, I implore everyone reading to check out the first round of the Mae Young Classic. As commentator Jim Ross pointed out, Jazzy Gabert (known everywhere else as The Alpha Female) has had a rough road to the tournament. Kicked out of her adopted home at the age of 15, Gabert chased her dream of being a dominant athlete, with forays into the worlds of professional wrestling and MMA. The way that the crowd came alive in the opening moments of the match got me super emotional, as Gabert is someone I’ve adored for some time now, but watching how the crowd reacted to her work kept me so hype for the match itself. Do yourself a favor: watch her match with Abbey Laith, as well as the rest of the tournament.