In our 5 Year Flashback blog we touched upon where Martin Kirby was 5 years ago, and it got me thinking – where has, and how has Martin Kirby come to where he is now? This blog explores Kirby’s tumultuous and successful GPW career.
Long before Kirby’s GPW debut at “Back With A Bang 2009”, Kirby was part of GPW shows. However, it was as a paying fan and not as a wrestler. Kirby, a devoted Joey Hayes fan was inspired by his hero to take up wrestling training and debuted for the company he paid to watch just 2 and a half years later.
Kirby (then with hair) defeated both members of tag team Lethal Dose (Jack Gallagher & Cyanide) in his first two matches, and in his third he was given a chance to face the man who had lead him here, Joey Hayes. Kirby tasted defeat for the first time.
However, defeat didn’t keep Kirby down and his major break out match came with an impressive win at Only The Strong Survive 2009 in a singles match against a former ROH Pure Champion. John Walters (now known as RJ Brewer). The match caught everyone’s attention, including GPW management who rewarded Kirby with entry into a Luke Marsden’s £10k 10 Man Battle Royal in 2009’s “And Justice For All”. The winner would not only receive a cheque from “Big Brother 9’s Luke Marsden” for £10k, but also an immediate shot at the Heavyweight Title.
With the wind in his sails, Kirby won the Battle Royal to lay claim to the cash, and the title shot. The winning didn’t stop there either, as he then went onto defeat Heavyweight Champion, Juggernaut, albeit by count out and Kirby left without the title. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the only thing he left without that night. Marsden claimed that the small print in the contract read that not only did Kirby have to win the Battle Royal, he also had to win the title in order to take his money home with him.
Despite never being able to cash the cheque, there was revenge for Kirby in the end who sent Marsden packing after he dumped him in a bin. Kirby rounded off his debut year in GPW by gaining entry into the Crazy Cruiser-8 Tournament, reaching the Quarter Finals, losing to eventual tournament finalist, CJ Banks.
Throughout 2010, Kirby was embroiled in a feud with the CC8 Winner and British Champion, CJ Banks. Kirby was unable to dislodge the title from Banks, who reigned as title holder for 399 days (16th October 2009 – 19th November 2010).
It was in 2011 when Kirby’s title fortunes changed…
Much like his 2010, Kirby was distracted in almost a year long feud with Dirk Feelgood’s MasterPlan stable (Cameron Kraze, Jiggy Walker, Bubblegum and Melanie Price). Unlike in 2010 however – Kirby had the MiTB for a title shot up his sleeve, only problem being, it would expire at the end of the year on the final show “Do or Die”.
First thing was first, Kirby had to deal with each member of the MasterPlan. After eliminating Walker and Kraze in a Torneo Cibernetico, he turned his attention to Bubblegum in a Hair v. Hair match at “Do or Die” in a night that would hold mixed emotions for Kirby.
Despite defeating Bubblegum in the Hair v. Hair match, it was Kirby who ended up with his head shaved thanks to the MasterPlan members holding him down and giving him a buzz cut. Embarrassed and looking the furthest thing from a winner he could, Kirby retreated to the back. But – he still had a bullet in the gun no one else did, and he hadn’t fired yet.
In the main event of the evening, MasterPlan leader Dirk Feelgood realised a 2 year campaign to become Heavyweight Champion for the second time by pinning Damon Leigh but he’d forgotten all about the MiTB winner, and he came Kirby! Kirby cashed in his title shot, pinned Dirk after Kirby’s Dreamland to not only become GPW Heavyweight Champion but to finally put his year long feud with The MasterPlan to bed. What a year 2011 was for Kirby!
The wins continued in 2012 when Kirby defended the title. High profile single victories came over the likes of Dave Mastiff and CJ Banks. However, arguably his highest profile win came in the innovative “High Stakes 4-Way Main Event” where Kirby, Dirk Feelgood, Jack Gallagher and Cyanide all had to put something on the line to compete in the match. Kirby put the Heavyweight title on the line and still walked out the champion. Watch the whole match by clicking here.
After a close tussle for the title against Joey Hayes, Kirby eventually lost the title at “Heroes & Villains 2” on 7th December 2012 to Cyanide in a 3-Way match that also featured Joey Hayes. Kirby held the title for a massive 371 days.
At the turn of the year, it took until November 2013 before Kirby tasted a victory again. With losses against old foes, Joey Hayes and CJ Banks in singles matches Kirby also failed to get the win in a Six Man MiTB, tag team matches and a Rumble. It led Kirby to make a decision that would affect his relationship with the fans as he double crossed the very man who had been his gateway into GPW, Joey Hayes. Born out of frustration by being unable to defeat Joey, Kirby aligned himself with then GPW newcomer, the creepy Noah and turned his back on fans, and friend, Joey Hayes.
With the change of attitude came a change of fortunes as Kirby once again started racking up the wins again. But there was no getting away from the man he’d double crossed, Joey Hayes and it was Hayes who once again defeated Kirby by pinfall in June 2014 putting an end to their feud and committing Kirby to an unfortunate streak of never having beaten Joey Hayes by pinfall. A streak that still runs to this day.
The defeat against Joey hit Kirby hard, and a downward spiral of defeats followed. In fact, Kirby’s hand wasn’t risen in victory for over 12 months.
Defeats throughout 2014 continued but perhaps none more humiliating was his defeat to the then undefeated Ashton Smith at Final Fight. Rather stupidly, Kirby had challenged Smith to one of the oddest stipulations we’ve ever had at GPW. Kirby had taken issue with the fact that Smith had been shopping in the Tesco’s of his home trown, Hindley. If Smith should lose, he would be banned from Hindley Tesco’s but if he won, Kirby vowed to sell his house in Hindley and move out of not just the town, but the whole county! Of course, Kirby hadn’t thought it through and he lost.
2015 started with the former “Hindley Hero” now homeless and things got worse. Defeats against the likes of El Ligero, Sexy Kev, Cyanide and more made 2015 seem very much like Kirby’s 2014…
Then, in June 2015 came the mystery benefactor Battle Royal, and Kirby’s fortunes changed. A mystery individual had put up £100k to the winner of a 10 Man Battle Royal. Kirby, seeing this as his opportunity to get from out of the underneath of the ring where he’d been sleeping rough for 6 months to getting a roof back over his head. Kirby rallied and won the rumble. But he was about to be counter offered…
The mysterious individual behind the money was revealed to be Sheikh Mohammed Rizzy Khan who gave Kirby an ultimatum that would effect the rest of his life. He offered him the £100k, or to come and work for him, live in one of his palaces and enjoy all the trappings of a rich lifestyle where he would earn more than £100k every single month.
Homeless Kirby turned down the £100k and chose palatial living with The Sheikh. Not only did this new alignment bring good fortune out of the ring, it brought it inside of the ring too when Kirby notched up victories against the likes of Wahoo Thunderfoot, Sexy Kev ending his 2015 on the up.
In 2016, Kirby and The Sheikh teamed together in a bid to become Tag Team Champions. Although their attempts were fruitless Kirby was enjoying all the luxuries of a billionaire lifestyle. However, it wasn’t all smiles for long…
Come the end of 2016 The Sheikh had got himself involved in argument with Jet Fashion where he ordered Kirby to fight Fashion in a one on one contest in November 2016. If Fashion won, The Sheikh would sign over his entire fortune to him. Not thinking for a moment Kirby would lose. But he did. All too comfortable with the easy life, Fashion was more hungry than Kirby and The Sheikh has blamed Kirby for the loss of his fortune ever since.
Since the start of 2017, The Sheikh has made it his mission to make Kirby pay for losing him his fortune. He had made a series of secret “investments” who would try and defeat Kirby and punish him for how he’d let the Sheikh down.
So far, none of these investments have been able to beat Kirby and with the fans thouroughly behind him, could we be finally seeing some of the old Martin Kirby back?
Find out if he’s able to keep the wins going this Friday, May 12th when The Sheikh unveils his latest “investment” who he promises is someone Kirby has never faced anything like before. Order your tickets from the shop for just £8 now!!