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Six, TNA Wrestling to host India events in Dec

MUMBAI: In order to compete more
effectively for eyeballs in the
country, TNA Wrestling has decided to
take the live events way. Accordingly,
in conjunction with its broadcast
partner Six, TNA will organise a
televised wrestling event in Mumbai in
Six, Kix business head Prasana
Krishnan and TNA executive VP of
television and talent relations John
Gaburick announced three TNA
Wrestling events scheduled to take
place in Mumbai from 2–4 December
2015. This move brings an
internationally broadcast sporting
event to India featuring the stars and
knockouts of ‘Impact Wrestling’,
TNA’s flagship.
The final show, ‘TNA One Night Only:
Mumbai’, on 4 December, will be
broadcast live in India, the US and all
around the world. Full information,
including broadcast details, will be
released in the coming weeks.
Also present at the launch were three
of TNA’s names—India’s own
Mahabali Shera, former TNA World
Heavyweight Champion Ethan Carter
III and Knockout Rebel, who are
currently undertaking a seven-day
international media tour of four of
India’s major cities to promote the
upcoming live events.
Additionally, Six and TNA announced
the launch of their second search for
India’s next big wrestling star to join
Mahabali Shera on the TNA roster.
The project will give aspiring
wrestlers from India an opportunity
to showcase their talents on a global
platform. The announcement follows
2014’s grand unveiling of TNA’s first
ever Indian wrestler, Mahabali Shera,
after a year-long talent search led by
TNA Hall of Famer and Olympic Gold
Medallist Kurt Angle.
In a further announcement, wrestling
star Dalip Singh will lead the search
alongside Gaburick. Singh will be a
part of the selection process and help
mentor the contenders. He has also
given his endorsement to December’s
TNA events.
Mahabali Shera, Ethan Carter III and
Rebel are currently on a promotional
tour, engaging fans through a series
of activities. The expansive media and
fan engagement tour kicked off in
Mumbai today and will head to
Ahmedabad, Hyderabad and Bangalore.
TNA fans in India can look forward to
meeting and interacting with their
heroes in each city.
Krishnan said, “Localisation is a
significant step for us. India is a
country that has an extensive history
of wrestling, with such talent in
abundance. Given the national
interest for the sporting event, we
want to showcase consistent content
along with high-quality and local
programming to connect with our
viewers. The fan aficionado is
“The TNA One Night Only: Mumbai will
be a first-of-its-kind initiative in
India for wrestling fans. For the first
time, our local viewers will be able to
experience a live event, which is
something that they have only seen on
our channel.”
“The talent search will further give
Indian wrestlers an opportunity to be
a part of the incredible international
TNA roster. Through our annual
efforts in showcasing international
wrestling talents in India, we aim to
reach out to a broader fan base in the
country.” He added that the TG for
TNA Wrestling is 15–34 males. “We
have a younger profile. Our aim is
that with localisation, doing a talent
hunt the viewership will broaden.”
TNA Wrestling president Dixie Carter
said, “Our phenomenal partners at
Sony Six have been tremendous in
recognising the powerful reach of
professional wrestling and we are
thrilled TNA programming has
contributed to the network’s ranking
as the most-watched sports channel in
all of India. We are also proud of the
relationships we are forming with our
fans across India and we are honoured
to travel our incredible roster to
India for three historic global live
events emanating from Mahabali
Shera’s home.”
Gaburick noted that the aim is to host
live events every year in the country.
MSM has aired TNA content for two
years. The previous partner was Star.
For him, the decision to go with MSM
was also based on MSM’s commitment
as a partner.
“We are coming off our pay per view
‘Bound for Glory’. While we are seen
in 120 countries in 14 languages,
those are just numbers. What we pride
ourselves in is partnership,
collaboration and working together.
With Sony, we have built a great
partnership,” he said.
Today, digitisation allows parents to
check what their children can watch.
Gaburick though maintained that TNA
Wrestling offers a product that is
suitable for family viewing. He feels
that India is a large enough market
to accommodate two sports
entertainment properties (WWE is the
other one).
“We looked last year about which
region we should focus on. We decided
on India. Our aim is to build a great
relationship. India has a great
history of sports and entertainment.
Last year, we sent Kurt Angle to find
someone who could represent India.
Our plan was so successful that we
will do it again.”
Dalip Singh runs CWE Academy to train
wrestlers. Gaburick is hopeful that
the academy will act as a feeder for
TNA Wrestling in due course. The aim
in doing events in the country going
forward is to combine local talent
with foreign stars.
Outside the US, the company holds
events in the UK and in Japan. For
him, the USP of TNA Wrestling lies in
the six-sided ring, the quality of the
stars and the level of storytelling.
“The live event will be special. What
our superstars can do in the rung is
WWE has not done an event in the
country since 2002. Gaburick noted
that there are places in the country
that offer infrastructure to hold an
Prasana noted that TNA Wrestling’s
approach in India is different from
WWE’s in that the focus is more on
localisation, finding Indian talent who
can be a part of the roster and doing
local events. “Let us see where it
goes from here.”

Six, TNA Wrestling to host India events in Dec

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