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Friday, June 9, 2023

Jeddah audience to witness its first WWE Elimination Chamber match

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JEDDAH: A WWE Elimination Chamber match is taking place on Saturday in Saudi Arabia for the first time, featuring some of wrestling’s biggest names.

The event is being held in Jeddah, at the world’s largest freestanding dome, and is being organized by the General Entertainment Authority.

On Friday, Arab News had the chance to talk to some of the wrestlers about their expectations for the event.

WWE champion Bobby Lashley is defending the title against a group of veteran wrestlers including Brock Lesnar, Riddle, Theory, and AJ Styles.

It is his fourth time in Saudi Arabia.

Bobby Lashley. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)

“I’m super excited about tomorrow’s event. Every time we come here, the crowd is so alive and so exciting. S that makes us happy. You know, we have a good crowd, we always put on great matches. You see here, the people that we brought, we brought the best of the best in the entire wrestling business. So, we’re going to put on the greatest show that they have ever seen.

“I’ve been in one same room as before I came down to Victorious. So, this will be my second one. That’s probably one of the most grueling nights so I am 100 percent sure that I’m gonna walk out like a WWE champion tomorrow.”

Bill Goldberg said he was “extremely excited” about the event.  “I truly am. I’m at peace. So be careful what you ask for tomorrow night, you may get 20 times what you ask for.”

Charlotte Flair. (AN photo by Huda Bashatah)

When asked who he was planning to beat, he replied: “My biggest adversary is myself. And I’ve been at battle with him for six years, and I’ve defeated him. Okay, so whoever’s in front of me. Better hold on. It doesn’t matter to me when the bell rings. If I’m in a prison, if I’m in a shed, if I’m in an Elimination Chamber, I don’t care where I am, because the only thing that matters is whoever’s in front of me.”

Ronda Rousey will join forces with Naomi against SmackDown Women’s Champion Charlotte Flair and Sonya Deville.

Flair told Arab News: “I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like in the dome tomorrow. I’ve had the opportunity to pretty much perform everywhere except for here. So, I’m really excited to bring the smackdown title. I’m very excited. I’m going to win the match. Wow.”

The youngest participating wrestler is Austin Berry. Aged 24, he said that Saturday was a really big day for him.

“It’s actually a lot of records,” he told Arab News. “I could start tomorrow. So tomorrow will be my first time performing in Saudi Arabia. It’d be my first time in the Elimination Chamber. It’s my second opportunity at a WWE Championship. But if I won tomorrow, which you know, possible in theory, why not? I can become the youngest WWE Champion in history.”

Berry said that the Elimination Chamber was one of the hardest fights. “It is for the WWE Championship, so I’m going to go crazy tomorrow.”

The event will also feature US tag team twins Joshua Samuel Fatu and Jonathan Solofa Fatu, better known by their ring names Jey Uso and Jimmy Uso.

The event is part of the GEA’s program of activities and international shows. It is also part of its cooperation with WWE to present its global shows in the Kingdom.

WWE Elimination Chamber matches are usually held in the US and they will be held outside the country for the first time since the event started in 2002.

Elimination Chamber matches are hugely popular all over the world as they are considered to be an exciting but brutal spectacle.

The fight has six wrestlers in the ring. It begins with the entry of two wrestlers and, every five minutes, the door is opened for another to enter the arena. This process continues until all the wrestlers enter.

Tickets are available at ticketMX.com and prices range from SR50 ($13.33) to SR900.

The battle begins at 8 p.m. and ends at midnight.



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