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Dave Cameron

I am the Original Boxing and Wrestling Nut


Dave Cameron's collectionI became interested in boxing and wrestling about 1945. I used to cut the war maps out of the paper and paste them in scrapbooks. I was also cutting out pictures of world champion boxer Joe Louis and his opponents around this time.

When the war ended the radio broadcasts of the wrestling resumed, after being highly successful in the pre-war years. I started making scrapbooks of wrestlers and boxers as the papers of the day always had a picture of the visiting wrestlers. In those days a wrestling contest was written up in its entirety and every hold and counter hold was written in the following days paper.

Dave CameronI started amateur wrestling about 1951 in Gisborne and didn’t tell my parents I was wrestling. However they soon found out, as results were always printed in the papers. I was glued to the radio from about 9:15 till about 1a.m. most nights of the week to hear the wrestling broadcasts from around New Zealand, and then later on Australia. My mother sometimes checked to see if I was asleep, and I could hear her coming down the long passageway and I used to quickly turn the radio off and pretend to be asleep. I made lots of notes and kept results, all of which I still have today. I wrestled several New Zealand Champions in Bill Adams, (Dels father) Barry Courteney, and Ken Ruby on several occasions. We always lived in country areas so I didn’t make the headlines.

In the 1950’s and 60’s I did two trips to England and tried my hand at the pro game, as I was far too small to wrestle in New Zealand. I was pretty green and always begging for work, so I decided I wasn’t going to make it in my favourite sport.

Dave Cameron I loved writing articles and publicizing the sport so I devoted my life to writing stories for magazines around the world. At one time I was writing for a French publication and had to get the English translated, and also several Japanese glossy mag’s. I did articles in most of the top American magazines in the 60’s and 70’s . The first wrestling article I ever had published was for an English wrestling magazine in 1949, although I used to do boxing notes in the American “Ring” magazine before that.

Today I am still working on a history of New Zealand wrestling, as it deserves a place on New Zealand history. The 1930’s saw huge radio audiences listening to wrestling broadcasts, and continued on after the war. Lofty Blomfield’s name was as famous as the Prime Minister in those years, as everyone tuned in for the wrestling broadcasts.Dave and Andre the Giant In the 1970’s Steve Rickard’s “On The Mat” made history by becoming the second longest running show on N.Z television and in the 80’s the famous tag team from New Zealand “The Bushwhackers” made history by cracking it big in the U.S. and working for Vince McMahon in the W.W.F. and were huge superstars.

Hopefully I will be able to finish the book this year and make sure the history of N.Z. wrestling is preserved and never forgotten.Dave and the Great Ali