Algarve-based journalist Roger Green, who combined his newspaper career in the UK with appearances in the professional ring against some of the top TV stars of the 1960s and 1970s, has had a book published by Amazon Kindle Book Publishing entitled Memoirs of a TV Wrestler.
The book is a no-holds-barred semi-autobiography which takes the lid off the groan and grunt game and gives an insight into the showmanship tricks of the trade, the fixed matches, the real dramas, the politics of the business and exploitation by the promoters.
It also spotlights some of the larger-than-life characters who became household names during the golden era of TV wrestling.
More than five million fans tuned into wrestling on ITV’s World of Sport on Saturday afternoons until the plug was pulled in favour of the American wrestling pantomime, and today there is a huge wave of nostalgia for the British style.
Roger trained at the famous Bob Woolger’s bodybuilding gym in Portsmouth. Bob was considered the founder of British bodybuilding and had nurtured the career of Arnold Schwarzeneger when ‘Arnie’ was a teenager living in England. ‘Arnie’ never forgot his mentor and when Bob died he flew from the USA to attend the funeral.
Roger learned the wrestling moves at a gym run by the heavyweight boxer and wrestler Big Bruno Elrington who introduced him to the promoter Paul Lincoln, and Roger appeared many times in televised bouts against stars such as Mick McManus, Jackie Pallo and Adrian Street.
He also regularly took part in tag team matches partnered by Londoner Bob Anthony, and the pair are well remembered by fans for their matches against Bert Royal and Vic Faulkner.
Roger once partnered Big Daddy (Shirley Crabtree) in a mixed weight tag team tournament.
In the UK, he had trained as a journalist on the Portsmouth Evening News and later joined the Daily Mirror in London as a news reporter, news-hounding by day and grappling around the country’s wrestling halls by night.
After quitting the wrestling ring in the late 1970s, he moved to the Algarve and worked as a freelance journalist. Over the years has written widely for publications including Essential Algarve, the Inside series of magazines and the Algarve Resident.
He has also had a book published entitled Ahead Of the Game on the business career of the entrepreneur André Jordan, who was the creative force behind the Quinta do Lago resort.
Memoirs of a TV Wrestler is available online through Amazon Kindle at £3.96p (or equivalent in euros)