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WWE announced this morning plans to hold a tournament to crown the first UK Champion. Based on Triple H’s comments, this continues WWE’s diversification plan with WWE Network content by creating a “new brand” that is UK-based and caters to UK fans. Former ROH “match-maker” Nigel McGuinness, who did color commentary for ROH, will be the color commentator for the tournament, joined by lead play-by-play announcer Michael Cole. The press release issued to PWTorch by WWE follows:
WWE® (NYSE: WWE) announced today that it will crown the first-ever WWE United Kingdom Champion live on WWE Network during a special, two-night tournament on Saturday, January 14 and Sunday, January 15, 2017 beginning at 8:00 p.m. GMT. Fans can watch the WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament by signing up at WWENetwork.com.
Tickets for the WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament, emanating from the historic Empress Ballroom in Blackpool, go on sale today at 12:00 p.m. GMT and can be purchased online at livenation.co.uk.
“Our passionate U.K. fans deserve to have their own Champion,” said WWE Executive Vice President of Talent, Live Events & Creative, Paul “Triple H” Levesque. “The tournament is the next step in our ongoing strategy to create localized content for our global WWE Network, develop another brand that engages our passionate fans, and add a new dimension to our on-going storylines.”
This unprecedented event will feature a single-elimination tournament and showcase competitors from all four Home Nations and Ireland including: charismatic Trent Seven, from Wolverhampton; hard-hitting Pete Dunne, from Birmingham; Tyler Bate, the bright young 19-year-old star from Dudley, West Midlands; big brawler Wolfgang, from Glasgow; tough Tyson T-Bone, from Malvern; the aggressive Northern Irish grappler Tucker; Irish high-flyer Jordan Devlin, who hails from Bray, in County Wicklow, the same home town as WWE Superstar Finn Bálor®; and Londoner Roy Johnson, a former champion powerlifter.
William Regal, Head Scout, WWE Talent Development, and Robbie Brookside, WWE trainer, participated in the scouting process for the tournament competitors, using their unrivalled knowledge and experience of the UK scene, developed over careers of more than 20 years in the ring.
The WWE United Kingdom Championship Tournament on WWE Network will be called by WWE lead announcer Michael Cole, who will be joined by color analyst Nigel McGuinness, a mainstay of the UK independent scene.