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  Beatrice St. Clere Priestley (born 22 March 1996) is a British professional wrestler, best known by the ring name Bea Priestley. She is best known for her work at World Wonder Ring Stardom (Stardom), where she is a former two-time Goddess of Stardom Champion, a former one-time Artist of Stardom Champion, one-time World of Stardom and a one-time SWA World Champion. In Japan, Priestley also worked for New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) being part of the United Empire stable.

Priestley began her career in New Zealand at New Zealand Wide Pro Wrestling in 2013, before moving to England and being trained in Progress Wrestling's developmental program. Afterwards, she began working in the British independent circuit most notably for Defiant Wrestling (Defiant), and World of Sport Wrestling (WOS), before starting to work for Japanese promotion World Wonder Ring Stardom, becoming a one-time World of Stardom Champion, a one-time Goddess of Stardom Champion and a one-time SWA World Champion and the winner of the 2017 Goddesses of Stardom Tag League. As part of Bushiroad's aquisition of Stardom, Priestley began working for New Japan Pro Wrestling (NJPW) in October 2020, before leaving the promotion in March 2021.

During her time with Stardom, Priestley also worked for American promotion All Elite Wrestling (AEW), where she was one of its inaugural performers, before leaving the promotion in August 2020.

Professional wrestling career

Early career

Priestley began training at New Zealand Wide Pro Wrestling's developmental facility under Travis Banks, and debuted for the company when she was 14 years old. After four years, Priestley moved back to London, England to further her career, training in Progress Wrestling's developmental program 'The Projo.'[1]

World Wonder Ring Stardom (2017–2021)

On October 14, 2017, Priestley made her debut for the World Wonder Ring Stardom promotion by entering the Goddesses of Stardom Tag League tournament.[2] Days before the final of the tournament Priestley unsuccessfully challenged Toni Storm for the SWA World and World of Stardom Championship in Stardom event in Taiwan.[3] She ended up winning the tournament along with Kelly Klein.[4] followed the tournament, Priestley and Klein unsuccessfully challenged Oedo Tai (Hana Kimura and Kagetsu) for the Goddess of Stardom Championship.[5] In her six month stay in Stardom, Priestley made it to the finals of the 2018 Cinderella Tournament, before losing to the eventual winner Momo Watanabe.

On May 4, 2019, at Golden Week Stars 2019 Queen's Quest Produce, Priestley defeated Kagetsu for the World of Stardom Championship.[6] On November 4, 2019 Priestley lost the title to Mayu Iwatani, ending her 184 days reign. In January 2020, Priestley teamed up with Oedo Tai member Jamie Hayter to capture the Goddess of Stardom Championship, the first gaijin tag team to hold the titles. She would later join the villainous Oedo Tai faction after betraying Queen's Quest stablemate Momo Watanabe. Priestley and Hayter would vacate the Goddess of Stardom Championship, after both being unable to travel to Japan from the United Kingdom due to coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. On October 3, Priestley made her returned to Stardom, following the travel restrictions of the COVID-19 pandemic, defeating former Queen's Quest stablemate Momo Watanabe to win the vacant SWA World Championship. On November 14, Priestley and her Oedo Tai stablemates Natsuko Tora and Saki Kashima defeated Giulia, Maika and Syuri Kondo to become the new Artist of Stardom Champions. On November 15, 2020 Priestley lost the title to Syuri, ending her 43 days reign. They lost the titles to Cosmic Angels (Mina Shirakawa, Tam Nakano and Unagi Sayaka) on December 16. Ten days later, Priestley and her Oedo Tai stablemate Konami defeated Queen's Quest (Utami Hayashishita and Saya Kamitani) to win the Goddesses of Stardom Championship. On February 14, 2021 Priestley and Konami lost the titles to Himeka and Maika. In March 2021, Wrestling Observer Newsletter journalist Dave Meltzer reported that Priestley had choosen not to renew her contract with the promotion. Priestley made her last appearance for Stardom on April 4 at Yokohama Dream Cinderella, unsucessfully challenging Utami Hayashishita for the World of Stardom Championship.

New Japan Pro-Wrestling (2020–2021)

On October 16, Priestley made her surprise debut in NJPW alongside Great O-Khan by interfering and helping her boyfriend Will Ospreay defeat Kazuchika Okada in his final block match in the 2020 G1 Climax. After Ospreay left CHAOS, Priestley and O-Khan were announced as part of Ospreay's newest stable. The following day, the new group was subsequently named "The Empire", later renamed the United Empire. In March 2021, after her boyfriend Will Ospreay won the 2021 New Japan Cup, Priestley was kicked out of the stable by him, in order for Ospreay to prove that we would do anything to win the IWGP World Heavyweight Championship, that would be Priestley's last NJPW apperance.

In wrestling

  • Finishing moves
    • Bea-Trigger (Running knee strike) – adopted from Kenny Omega
    • Queen's Landing
  • Signature moves
    • Big Boot
    • Flawless Victory (Double Stomp)
    • Fatality (Kimura Lock)
    • Running Curb Stomp
    • Rings of Saturn (Scissored armbar crossface)
    • Cheeky Nandos (Superkick)
  • Entrance themes
    • "Blasphemy" by Bring Me The Horizon

Personal life

Priestley was diagnosed with a brain tumor when she was 14 years old. She underwent surgery to remove it at 18 years old.[7] Priestley is currently in a relationship with fellow wrestler Will Ospreay.[8][9][10][11][12] They have been together since as early as 2017.[13] In 2019, the couple revealed they were planning on moving to Japan due to them both wrestling there.

Championships and accomplishments

  • Pro Wrestling Illustrated
    • Ranked No. 80 of the top 100 female wrestlers in the PWI Female 100 in 2018[14]
  • World Wonder Ring Stardom
    • World of Stardom Championship (1 time)
    • Goddess of Stardom Championship (2 times) – with Jamie Hayter (1) and Konami (1)
    • Artist of Stardom Championship (1 time) – with Natsuko Tora and Saki Kashima
    • Goddesses of Stardom Tag League (2017) – with Kelly Klein
    • SWA World Championship (1 time)
    • Trios Tag Team Tournament (2019) – with Utami Hayashishita and Viper
    • Special Merit Award (2020)

References

External links