By: Jay Law
TNA Tryout Sydney 2009
13 years ago, was the last time TNA Wrestling visited Australia and with Impact Wrestling’s event coming up in Wagga Wagga it was suggested to me from PWdownunder.com I do an article on my experience being part of the TNA Wrestling tryouts.
Firstly, I’ll mention TNA Wrestling never held the shows they came to promote but they did hold Tryouts in Martin Place in Sydney. For me personally I think it was a cool experience and I value the experience now more looking back at it than I did at the time, as at the time I was much more focused on getting a result and getting exposure for the local Australian wrestling scene, as I knew the try out was going get media exposure on Australian morning shows.
Going into it I didn’t know exactly what to expect but I was imagining a real deal tryout however it was much more of a publicity event then a tryout, I don’t believe the intention from TNA was to find the next wrestler that could join the ranks as the set up and flow was a wrestling version of popular reality shows such as Idol and X factor. However, I like to think they would of used some local talent if the TNA shows did go ahead in Australia.
It was a cool experience, the set up looked cool with the ring set up right in the middle of Martin Place at morning peak hour with a bunch of people stopping while travelling to work to watch professional wrestling. Wrestlers TNT and Vulcan where organising things and did a great job, I certainly felt supported and looked after getting to go on first with “Iron Jay” Ben Coles, which was prime position to get a look in and represent the local wrestling scene which I was very grateful to be put in that position.
Jeff Jarret turned up 10 minutes before we were announced to enter and the tryout starting, he complemented both Ben Coles and Myself on looking professional and afterwards Jeff Jarret stuck around and gave some advice and shook hands with any of us that approached him, which looking back is really cool as I am a lifelong fan of Jeff Jarret. I could tell Jeff Jarret thought a lot of Ahmed Iblis who was wrestling for PWA at the time.
The tryouts did leave a bad taste in some wrestlers mouths when the edits went to live TV as it did feel more like a game show, and it was publicity that only promoted TNA and did not uplift the local scene that we are all passionate about and have worked hard on to keep going and were trying to grow.
I personally enjoyed it and I felt as though I learnt from the experience and enjoyed being apart of it all. I hope the Wagga Wagga shows go great for IMPACT! I hope the local talent shine as I am confident they will and I hope the show is well attended with great crowed reactions to the point were IMPACT will come back and do more shows and help create more opportunities and experiences for the Australian wrestling.