1. Welcome to TheBritishWrestlingRevival Blog David, thank you for taking time out to answer these questions, first of all please give the readers a brief introduction to David Graves??
Hello! Thanks for having me. Ok so David Graves is “The 80 Minute Man” – a former rugby player and coach who is taking what he learned on muddy playing fields, small sports club pitches and university sports facilities up and down the country, combining that with some top notch wrestling training and then applying that to the squared circle. In shorter terms the whole “80 minutes” thing means that I just keep going and going, never backing down, never giving up.
2. Let’s talk quickly about growing up for you, did you watch wrestling as a child and if so which wrestlers really inspired you to go down the path of training to become a wrestler??
Yes of course I did, I’ve loved wrestling since my primary school days when I used to pretend to be Shawn Michaels in the playground and then Road Dogg on an evening when I’d get home and go and play around in my neighbours garden. I was that kid who stayed up to watch Raw live on a Monday night and was half dead at school the next day. I also loved Goldberg. His intensity was something that I connected with through the screen. Funny story – I was banned from watching wrestling for a short period of time (I can’t remember exactly when, it was the time when Goldberg and Triple H had that blood bath in the Elimination Chamber after Evolution handcuffed him to the chamber) anyway I speared my sister just as she was coming down the stairs and broke her cocksics (probably spelled incorrectly) – safe to say after my mum saw that chamber footage and what I’d done to poor Sammy she felt wrestling was a bit too violent for me… The ban was eventually lifted though!
3. Next up lets speak about Training, how did you get involved in wrestling training, who had a hand in this and would you say that you enjoyed the experience??
Ok so like many guys and girls wrestling now a days I had wanted to do it since I was tiny but never really knew how to get into it. I remember when I was really young like 10 or something looking online at wrestling schools, there were only a couple that I could find. I’d asked for my parents to take me a few times but I think they just thought it was a phase I was going through and hoped I’d grow out of it. Eventually I’d pestered and pestered enough that they believed that I was serious about it. Originally I had pencilled in a visit to a school in Wakefield but at the last minute plans changed as Mum found a newspaper advert in the Yorkshire Evening Post for “Wrestling In Leeds – Professional Wrestling Training”. I emailed Paul Clarke and began training the next week along side my mate Nathan who I would share my first matches with as “Team Daniels” (we adopted his middle name as a surname) I was overly keen. I had boots, knee pads, elbow pads and an array of base layer tights that I was convinced were proper wrestling gear all within the first month or so. I also made us some t-shirts & vests with our own hashtags and slogans on the front for Grapple’s first show. All a bit embarrassing really looking back!
4. You wrestle for Grapple Wrestling and you were recently part of the Marty Jones Invitational Tournament beating BWR Alumni Sebb Strife and losing to Dom Black in the semi’s, are you proud of your efforts in the tournament and how would it have felt to have won the whole thing??
I’m proud to have been a part of the tournament for a number of reasons. It was dedicated to the memory of Kris Travis, a man who not many of us knew personally at Grapple but a “great” performer as Marty Jones said on at the tournament as we had a 10 bell salute and minutes applause. It was also fantastic to perform in a tournament associated with Marty Jones who’s been an invaluable addition to the coaching staff at Grapple alongside El Ligero who have both helped us all up our game tenfold. But most importantly to me personally it was testimony to how far Grapple has come as a company. I think we’re approaching our 5 year anniversary this September if I’ve got my dates correct and I’ve been with Grapple since the very first show, held on the grounds of a power station in Eggborough. To have won would have been amazing but it was great to see how far the in ring performances and the production side of things had come since then, regardless.
5. You wrestle for one of my main affiliates in TIDAL Wrestling where I mainly know you from, what are your thoughts on the rise of TIDAL over the past 12 months or so and you recently defeated previous TCW open champion Dan James are you still wanting to go after the title even though you never got a title match vs Dan??
Tidal has given myself and B.A. Rose some great opportunities to perform to a wider audience and share the dressing room with people far more experienced than ourselves and it’s a potentially big step for us as we attempt to learn as much as we can. Performing as a singles wrestler at Tidal has brought the same advantages. I’d be daft if I didn’t say that I want to be a champion in Tidal one day and with the Open Championship currently around the waist of Liam Lazarus, El Ligero holding the Heavyweight Championship and the new Tag Team Championships to be decided there’s certainly a lot of gold that I can set my sights on. Just have to watch this space.
6. You wrestle for Megaslam I believe a touring promotion akin to All Star, what are your thoughts on the touring environment and do you think that wrestling in this different style of shows improves you as a wrestler considering you are wrestling most nights of the week??
That’s correct, unfortunately I haven’t had a chance to go on a proper “camp run” yet but Megaslam have been great to me, offering the chance to perform and learn in front of some massive live crowds. I believe I’m going to be joining the team for a week or two this summer which will be a brilliant learning experience for me.
7. You tag with B.A Rose as The Burial who are the Grapple Tag Team Champions I believe, I saw you take a beating at the hands of Ward 13 in TIDAL to finally get a pinfall after various matches were you relieved in the end to finally get a deciding win, how is it teaming with B.A and do you prefer tag team wrestling to singles??
We are indeed the champs and have been for over a year, something else I’m pretty proud of. Ward 13 are so weird in every sense of the word. We’ve had some good clashes with them though but then we’ve also had better performances. I enjoy both tag team wrestling and singles for different reasons, tag team wrestling is great with the possibilities of so many different situations that can arise and the added bonus of twice as many people in the match but then singles is very much about “me” as a performer and gives me a bigger opportunity to show who David Graves is.
8. What would you say are your future ambitions in Wrestling and where do you see yourself in 5 years time??
I want to wrestle all over the world. That’s my over-riding goal really. I’m not one for setting incredibly specific goals I just tend to go with the flow. I’m quite critical of my own performance and I’m very aware of my commitment to wrestling so as long as I can honestly say I’ve kept my head down and worked hard then I’ll be happy and will look to make the most of any opportunities that may present themselves. As for 5 years time – I’d love to be making living from wrestling full time. Whether that’s abroad or hopefully as a bigger part of the ever-growing British scene I don’t know but it’s definitely something that I think I need to at least attempt to achieve before its all said and done.
9. As the interview draws to a close, where can the readers find ’80 Minute Man’ David Graves on social media and how can promoters get in contact with you about potential bookings??
I believe I’ve been super clever and changed all of my social media accounts to DavidGraves80 so that’s… Facebook: /DavidGraves80 Twitter: @DavidGraves80 Instagram @DavidGraves80 Promoters can either message me over social media (Facebook is probably the best bet) or I have an email address: firstname.lastname@example.org which is currently only receiving email marketing from various supplement and sports equipment sites so please help me to fill my in I with messages from real humans, people can also keep with my appearances via my blog and buy a Burial Smash Tshirt if they so wish from www.davidgravesgrappler.com.
10. Have you got any future projects/dates you wish to plug, if so the floor is yours to do so??
Yes, this weekend I wrestle for RISE, BWE, NGW and Megaslam in Leeds, Beverly and Felixstowe respectively. I also have Tidal in Leeds later this month on the 24th and Grapple have two more shows coming up on the 30th April in Bradford and the 7th May in Leeds so please do check all of those promotions out as they all legitimately offer something a little different to one another.
Thanks to David for taking part in this interview and taking time out of his schedule to complete these, as a thank you please go and support him on social media and buy something from his shop if possible, I bought a signed Burial photo myself last night! There will be more like this coming up only way to find out when they are out is by going to :
Twitter : @BritWresRevival
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