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Ricky Rickard

Ricky RickardI started amateur wrestling as a 10 year old in 1968 and turned professional ten years later in Wellington.

As an amateur wrestler at Raynor Greeks Hall we had a very small canvas mat to work on for a number of years. Then Steve Rickard bought a proper rubber round mat which he paid a few thousand for. As a professional we had a mini roped ring which I built under Steve’s gym where most of the local professionals trained.

I wrestled for my father Steve Rickard who was the promoter and I represented New Zealand as an amateur wrestler in the USA. I toured up and down New Zealand for the most part of two years. I also toured the USA, Singapore, Malaysia and Australia.

Ricky RickardI wrestled many local and overseas wrestlers but can’t name them all. The ones I remember are: Ox Baker, King Curtis, Larry O’Day and Abdullah the Butcher.

My toughest opponent was Bruce Hart who was World Junior Champion at the time. Also Larry O’Day.

My worst memories were my injuries: a broken collar bone, broken leg, back sockets and my nose twice. My best memories were travelling overseas.

I now work as a hotel Manager. Wrestling has changed so much now. New Zealand-wise you do need to tour to be seen so people can relate to who you are and TV is so important.

August 2007