A champion wrestler who has been undefeated in Morecambe for almost nine years is hanging up his trunks and boots.
Paul Grint, known to grapple fans as ‘The Heavyweight House of Pain’ Stixx, will say farewell to fans at the seaside town’s Winter Gardens venue this Saturday.
Grint, 35, has decided to retire from wrestling at the end of 2016.
The reigning Alpha Omega Wrestling Champion, who has been struggling with a back injury, has been a regular at the town’s popular wrestling nights for 12 years.
He is also a former PAID Promotions Champion and FWA Tag Team Champion, winning all of these titles at shows in Morecambe.
“At the end of the year, I say goodbye to the crazy world of wrestling (well, being an active performer anyway),” said Stixx on his Facebook page.
“Not out of boredom, bitterness, injury or lack of motivation, but simply because I am happy in life and I want to enjoy whilst I still can.”
Nottingham-based Stixx wrestled his first match in Morecambe in June 2004 against his good friend ‘The Bollywood Dream’ RJ Singh.
Alongside former WWE superstar Martin Stone, Stixx captured the FWA Tag Team Titles at The Dome in June 2005.
After a loss to Sam Slam at The Dome in February 2008, Stixx became a ‘babyface’ or ‘good guy’.
The popular star then embarked on a long undefeated streak known as ‘The Stixx Streak’ which has continued to this day.
His victims during his near-nine year run have included Zak Knight, brother of WWE superstar Paige, TNA star Rockstar Spud, Morecambe-based former three-time champion ‘The Psychotic Warrior’ Johnny Phere and stand-out UK grapplers Marty Scurll, Nathan Cruz, Joe Hendry and Chris Ridgeway.
But after narrowly defeating Cruz in a title defence at the Winter Gardens in September, Stixx told the fans that November 12 would be his final Morecambe show.
“I don’t want to be one of those guys who doesn’t know when to take a step back,” he said.
“The streak and the title have become so important to me I kept coming up – driving for eight hours with an injured back – to keep the dream alive for the people of Morecambe.
“But I don’t want to reach the point where I can’t pick my baby girl up or play with her because I went too far, or took one match too many.
“And the calibre of wrestlers for me to defend against keeps getting better and better. For the sake of my health, and the sake of my family, I have to call it a day.”
There will be a farewell ceremony for Stixx at the Winter Gardens on Saturday, when he is expected to vacate the Alpha Omega Wrestling championship.
Kieran Engelke, Alpha Omega Wrestling promoter, said: “On top of all of his achievements in the ring, Stixx has been a leader and an iconic figure backstage, helping stars reach the next level and inspiring everyone to raise their game show after show.
“On behalf of everyone at Alpha Omega Wrestling, and all of the Morecambe fans, we want to say thank you to Stixx.”
Meanwhile, British wrestlers who will soon appear on the revival of ITV ‘World of Sport’ Wrestling will also be part of Saturday night’s ‘Remember Remember’ bill.
Delicious Danny Hope and the Alpha Omega Wrestling Women’s Champion Viper will be part of the first ITV British wrestling show in almost three decades when it airs later this year.
On Saturday night, Hope will battle Chris Ridgeway, who will be accompanied as always by the self-professed ‘Mr Morecambe’ Greg ‘The Truth’ Lambert.
Viper will defend her championship against her perennial rival Lana Austin.
Other matches on the card are Joey Hayes v Laird Grayson, The Referendum defend the AOW-UK Tag Team Titles against Solar Power, James Drake battles Ricky J McKenzie and ‘The Man For All Seasons’ Xander Cooper will face his protege Ryan Hunter.
Doors open at 6pm for a 6.30pm start. VIP ticket holders can enter at 5.30pm.
Advance tickets cost £9 for adults (£12 on the door), £6 for children/students (£9 on the door), £25 for a family of four (£36 on the door) and £15 for VIP tickets (includes front row seat and pre-show meet and greet with a wrestling star).
Buy in advance through aowuk.com or from Studio Bronze on Queen Street, Morecambe.
See HERE for a full rundown of Stixx’s wrestling career in Morecambe.
Photos by Tony Knox and David Wilson.