| Last updated
Tyler Bate is a wrestler on the rise. Since becoming the first ever WWE: UK (now NXT:UK) Champion, the 24-year-old has earned a reputation for putting on stunning matches around the world. The latest entry into his incredible body of work came last week, when he defeated A-Kid to win the Heritage Cup in a bout that is already being talked about as a Match Of The Year contender. Tyler Bate spoke exclusively to SPORTbible after his historic win about the feverish reaction the match was already enjoying online.
"My goal is for my matches to be able to stand the test of time. I don't want my matches to just be a trick, or a clickbait thing that gets people watching. I want my matches to be watchable through any time period. What is true artistically will stand the test of time. I want pro wrestling to be better off for my contribution to it. That's always my approach, to give the highest quality, truest, timeless, purest, professional wrestling. Anybody could watch it. Even non-wrestling fans could watch it and enjoy it. That's what I try to achieve."
The Moustache Mountain member puts a lot of importance on his work transcending modern trappings and standing the test of time. Therefore it comes as no surprise that when asked to cite his inspirations, they are the historic greats of the 80s and 90s whose work is still widely enjoyed to`day for its timeless quality.
"The Dynamite Kid. That's someone who I tried to emulate often when I'm wrestling. His matches against Tiger Mask can very easily be watched today. And oftentimes are better than most matches that, at least in my opinion, are showcased today. Shawn (Michaels) and Bret (Hart), the Iron Man. I don't know if you're puro (Puroresu, Japanese wrestling) fan but like (Mitsuharu) Misawa and (Kenta) Kobashi. Like the Misawa-Jumbo Tsuruta matches, because the story of the match was always the wrestling. That's why they live the longest. Because they're the truest."
Tyler Bate's efforts to present realistic and memorable matches has not gone unnoticed. In the aftermath of the A-Kid bout, WWE Executive and legendary competitor Triple H tweeted high praise for the former NXT Tag Team Champion, dubbing him "one of the pillars of the (NXT:UK) brand. Bate says that the experience of working closely with ring legends such as Triple H has been an invaluable part of his WWE journey.
"It's an incredible privilege to have people like Triple H and Shawn Michaels working so closely with us, because they themselves set the new paradigm for wrestling. They know what it takes to become great at what you do. So their advice and their guidance is golden, it's priceless. I feel like when I came to the WWE, that first UK tournament, I could hold my ground well enough. But as as a professional wrestler, even as a person, I was so underdeveloped. Having people like Triple H, Shawn Michaels and (former A-Train turned trainer) Matt Bloom around helps me develop not only as a professional, but as a person. They've been around the business for quite a long time. They're very wise men. And it would be unwise of me not to listen to their wisdom."
One of the pillars of this brand from the VERY beginning.... The #NXTUK #HeritageCup is in the good (and fighting) hands of its new holder ... Tyler Bate!!! #AndNew #WeAreNXTUK https://t.co/zneYH561jj- Triple H (@TripleH) May 20, 2021
After such a well-received clash with A-Kid, naturally talk has turned to a rematch. Bate would relish the chance to defend his newly-won Heritage Cup against the former holder, and he has some unprecedented rules in mind for if it does transpire.
"I think a rematch with A-Kid would be very fun. I don't know how familiar you are with the PRIDE MMA fighting, but I really enjoyed the story between Kazushi Sakuraba and the Gracies. Sakuraba beats all of the Gracie family and he's left with, is it Rickson Gracie? (Sakuraba would fight Royce Gracie last). Then eventually they do unlimited rounds. And it just goes until there's a winner. And I feel like that's something that I'd quite like to do with A-Kid. Heritage rules with unlimited rounds."
Unlimited rounds could result in an incredibly lengthy match, something Bate is no stranger to. His Takeover: Cardiff bout with NXT:UK Champion WALTER lasted 42 minutes, in a bout Bate describes as an "epic encounter" that will "stand the test of time". But how long does he envision an A-Kid rematch lasting?
"So the match with Walter, that one was about 45 minutes. I feel like then I was my last few gasps of air. So I don't know if my gas tank is as good as it was then, or even if it's better. I guess something equivalent to 40-45 minutes I could do definitely. Maybe an hour, I'll do an hour."
With Tyler Bate riding the crest of a wave coming out of an instant classic match, it's intriguing to think what a potential rematch would be like. Sign us up for Tyler Bate vs A-Kid with unlimited rounds.
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read