Breaking Kayfabe: Last Day At The HCC by Wayne Tomkins

Welcome to a very sombre edition of Breaking Kayfabe. “Why?” I hear you all ask in a caring yet rushed tone. In this edition we say goodbye to our training home for the last 14 months, we say goodbye to the Hawkinge Community Centre (or more affectionately known as the HCC).

HCC has been the base of SEPW not just for the Academy but for our shows too. Right back in the early days when Head Coach/SEPW Owner Matt had short hair, the HCC held our quarterly shows. The good news is that they will continue to do so. We have built up quite a loyal base there, and want to keep that base as SEPW expand and grow further in the region.

The academy had to move due to demand. More pupils want to join but Matt and Amy (the wife of Matt and real boss of the promotion) had their hands tied at the HCC due to conflicting schedules. It is a community centre after all and if the hall is booked out by someone else for say Karate practice or a badminton match, then SEPW couldn’t run a class..

Hence why we’ve moved to our own unit. We’re not tied down to anyone else’s schedule but our own. Matt and Amy have big plans for SEPW in the next year or so. Huge plans! So I’m hoping that all of you loyal true believers stick with me and SEPW, it’s gonna be one hell of a ride!

Now, with that little shill out of the way, it’s time for the main event…..our last training session at the Hawkinge Community Centre. Grab those tissues folks, it’s going to be emotional.

Sunday 25th June

For the first time in what feels like forever, all four members of the Ashford Posse were in the car. Dan H (Senior Referee and also Academy fan favourite One Fan Dan) was driving as penance for missing two weeks ago to go watch some (pretty awesome bands if I do say so myself) rock festival a few weekends back. Missing out on a last chance to go through his match with Conroy and Vega at Hustle & Heart II last weekend. Don’t worry, Lee will be punished next weekend, don’t you worry.

Also in the car, ready for her third training session was my step-daughter Tasha. That wrestling bug I spoke about has really taken hold of her. This is a teenage girl that loves sleep more than anything, but there she is at 7.30am travelling to Hawkinge to train #ProudParent.

All talk in the car was about last weeks Hustle & Heart II show. How great it was, how everybody stepped up again, how MeatHead didn’t let down his hoards of fans with his injured ankle (and crazy ass antics), how I pretty much stole the show with my fantastic announcing and pandering to the locals…….Ok that last one wasn’t technically brought up for discussion but I was thinking it. And as it’s my blog, it’s my rules.

We got to the Centre, as usual, in very good time. No messing around today, all of us wanted that ring up and ready to go. This was to be an easier than normal session as it was our last one there. All of us, myself included, were looking forward to a nice relaxed fun session. Maybe even mess around a bit before we pack away the ring for the very last time? “Smart Mark Blake” possibly taking a bump? Who knows?

With everybody turning up quickly we had the ring assembled and ready to go in about 45 minutes. Not bad considering we were missing a few regulars. Couldn’t be helped though. Coursework, injury and pregnant wife are solid reasons if you ask me.

It was only fitting that Matt took control of the last session at the HCC, bringing it full circle. We all lined up in our usual positions (me at the back of the class, yes I’m nearly 40 but I’ll always be a silly teenager) and went through our stretching routine, getting all loose and limber in preparation for today’s session.

Neck exercises were up next. Front and back bridges to strengthen them up just incase you land awkwardly after a bump. And yes I know it’s ironic that a ring announcer/future manager is doing these exercises since I hardly ever leave my feet. The famous mantra never say never comes into effect here. Who knows if I ever get chance to take a manager bump in the ring? It’s not like I’ve put too much thought into taking a few solid strikes from someone, turn around and get slammed into the mat from their tag/stable partner.

Time for myself to bow out now and get to picture duty as the pace hots up with our core and cardio session. Headstands were next and to see so many students performing these without being next to a wall or having any help at all, was amazing. I remember when pretty much the entire class were having trouble, now there’s only a couple left that are using the wall to help them. Me? Yeah, right! I need a wall and a person either side of me to do that!

Set go’s, push up’s, sit up’s and planks were next on the menu. Planking for 90 seconds while the set go’s lasted for nearly two minutes if memory serves correctly. Pupils were knocking the planks out the park, hardly any shaking from stress and a lot of strong and stable form were on show. Good work folks! The set go’s were handled really well, apart from Tasha who got lost a little bit with the whistles but got through it like a trooper, just like her step old man!

As the students went for a quick water break, thinking that the worst of the morning was behind them, H/C Matt soon informed the class that it wasn’t. Cardio time was also “drill from WWE tryout” time. You know, the one where they sidestep quickly around the ring for two minutes and then two minutes of knees above middle rope? Yeah…..that one. The news went down like a lead balloon but they all went into the ring and pushed themselves. Even H/C Matt joined in and did the drill too!

A quick peek at the clock and it was getting to 10.30 am which only meant one thing. I was about to live baybaaaay! Facebook Live to be exact. It was now spot time and H/C Matt wanted the class to perfect the headscissor takedown via the top rope. Yeah I know that description sucks, so why don’t I let myself describe it a different way and you can actually see it for yourself. Just press play….


Pretty sweet huh?!? I’m prepared to take bumps and fly like an eagle from the top turnbuckle, but a twisting head scissor takedown? I’ll pass. My head would be spinning for about ten minutes after if I ever did it. And my stomach? Don’t ever go there!

Time was flying by today and before we knew it, it was 11.00am. Now the fun begins, it was practice match time. I always look forward to these matches. It gives me a chance to see the guys and girls put into practice not only what they’ve been taught on the day but from the past few months training. It also gives me a chance to get my videographer hat on. I capture all the practice matches so the students can see back how they were and what they would change etc. I like to see if I can use different camera angles and suchlike to see if that benefits the class or not. Usually it doesn’t so I end up putting the camera on a tripod and use it as a hard cam. Now if only I could use that as a hard cam and then use a decent video cam to capture the action from around ringside? Hmmmm…..

Today’s matchups were as follows –

Jack Voltage v One Fan Dan
Justin Vincible v “The Original” Conroy
Chris Castle & Amber v “The Flash Of Brilliance” Matt Terry & Will Power!
Silas Roth v One Fan Dan

Yup, One Fan was doing double duty today. I think he was trying to atone for missing the session before H&H2. Either that or he drew the wrong end of the stick!

To be honest he was actually involved with two stand out moments from those matches. In his match against Voltage, the finish was that One Fan took a Codebreaker from Jack but oversold it ala Triple H did against Randy Orton a few years back. Cant remember it? Watch this to understand….

One Fan Dan didn’t oversell it as long as Triple H did right there, but it was a good 10-15 seconds before he fell flat on his back and was covered by Voltage for the win. It was great to see a bit of comedy like that, and Dan never fails to try and include it in his matches.

The second stand out moment was the finish of his match against Silas Roth (Lee). Now the back story to this is that Lee is a massive fan of The Rated R Superstar, Edge. He’s always tried to emulate him in all his practice matches (2 at this point) in one way or another. Well it seems that One Fan was in a generous mood today as he was going to give Roth the win with a quite spectacular finish.

Lee/Silas the Edge fan…..speared One Fan Dan out of his training boots! I’m not kidding the entire class went ballistic when that spear hit! Quick cover and it was Roth’s first victory! Definitely a high moment to leave the HCC on.

In fact all the matches today left a mark on the Sports Hall at the Hawking Community Centre. If it wasn’t an oversell, or a spear, it was the triple suplex from Justin, a vicious looking donkey kick DDT from Conroy or a nasty chop from Amber.

It was a day of looking back at the memories and moments we’ve made and looking forward to the future memories and moments yet to happen.

Oh yes the future is bright alright…..the future my friends is SEPW…..

Closing Time

Wasn’t too emotional really was it? I spared you all from the real tears and hugs that happened, you don’t wanna see or read that.

In actual fact it was that emotional that after training a few of us including H/C Matt and Amy hit the bar in the HCC (yup they have an actual bar there! Gonna miss a quick pint after training now we’ve moved) for a toast to the past and the future. I ended up being over an hour late home, but lets gloss over that and concentrate on the future.

At the time of writing SEPW have moved into our new unit (You wont hit the floor at Unit 44 is a possible tagline, just throwing it out there) and had our first session. In all honesty, every single student is positively jumping with excitement for the future of the school. We have a new timetable that commences in August where we can offer pretty much all you could want from a wrestling school. I’ll let you know about that in good time but for now just trust me, SEPW are going places and I can’t wait to go along for the ride with them, and let you all know about not just mine but everyone’s adventures!

So until next time, it’s goodbye from me Wayne, and goodbye from me Mark Blake.