What is there to say about the Session Moth that hasn’t been said before? Martina has taken the beer-drinking, raving master of Sesh Style around the world and now has her flag planted in Ring of Honor. We here at Steel Chair Magazine were given the chance to talk to Martina one on one where we asked her about the current situation, all things deathmatches, dream opponents, and what she wants to do when all this blows over. Enjoy!
I’d like to pivot to something a bit different. I had the pleasure of seeing you take part in your first deathmatch tournament earlier this year at TNT’s Dead or Alive Tournament. What was it like taking part in such a big tournament?
“Yeah, that was great. I was delighted. Everyone who knows me knows, I love deathmatch wrestling. I’d had a few hardcore and deathmatches before it, probably more extreme than the one that I had there, but yeah, it’s my favourite type of wrestling, and I was very happy to get to be a part of it. I only wish that I got to do more. I wish that I got to go further in the tournament and just the opportunity to do more. I was meant to do Tournament of Death last year in the states for CZW, but because of WWE and tryouts and stuff, I didn’t want to go to America and risk it really. I pulled out of that one, so I was glad to get the opportunity to do another one in the UK. Hopefully, in the next year or so, I’ll get to do more, but that’s one thing I want to focus on outside of ROH. I just find those matches a lot of fun. Personally, I have a lot more fun with them, so for my own enjoyment, I want to do more of them next year.”
That explains the Tournament of Death situation…
“I was very disappointed I didn’t get to do it, but in the long run, it wasn’t worth going to the United States and risking not being able to go again. It wasn’t worth risking going over when I was about to get a visa. So, I decided not to go to the States again until I got my visa as it was safer. As much as I wanted to do it, I didn’t want to risk my future opportunities.”
In DOA, you got to fight Jimmy Lloyd. One of GCW’s top guys, how was that?
“I wrestled him the first time I was in the United States in 2018. I wrestled him at Joey Janela’s Spring Break. We were the first two in the Clusterfuck match, so that was great because I’ve known him since then and saw him last year at Mania week. I love him, I think he’s one of my favourite wrestlers, and I think he’s badass. I was actually the one to recommend him coming over. Jay (Apter) asked me what import he should get, and he wasn’t going to bring anyone from Japan, so I was like Jimmy Lloyd, definitely Jimmy Lloyd. So yeah, I’m very glad I got to wrestle him, and it got to be part of his first UK trip. I was hoping to see him at WrestleMania weekend this year as well, so hopefully, he’ll come back next year.”
So, I have you to thank you then as that was my first time seeing Jimmy Lloyd in person, and I’ve loved watching him on GCW shows for the past couple of years. Though I had a hard choice in that match as I did not know who to root for. I did love your choice of weapon for that match too…
“Yeah, it was really fun. The can-do stick, get it can-do stick. I made it before my first hardcore match at OTT. We had a Christmas hardcore match, so because it was hardcore, everyone took out kendo sticks from under the ring, and I went last and put a load of cans on it. That’s my deathmatch weapon.”
I bet the Sandman would approve of that one…
“I’d like to think so. I’d like to think that one day I’ll find out.”
Since you want to do more deathmatches in the future, are there any dream opponents?
“Oh, 100% I want to wrestle Nick Gage. He is my dream opponent forever and always. I’m obsessed with him. He’s definitely number one on my list. I met him last year, in fact, I’ve met him the last two years at Mania weekend, so he’s definitely probably my favourite wrestler and the top of my dream opponents. One day, I promise you, it will happen.”
Anyone from the Japanese deathmatch scene to go with it?
“(Masashi) Takeda. I’d love to wrestle Takeda. He’s another one of my favourites or Jun Kasai obviously or (Atsushi) Onita. I’d have to say Takeda would be my favourite.”
Just when you think you can’t respect the Session Moth any more…
“Yeah, I love Japanese deathmatch wrestling. I think it’s the best.”
I’m just reminded of the photo of you grinding on Nick Gage whilst NWO Sting looks disappointed in the background. That was an internet breaker…
“I know. That is the absolute magic of Spring Break. Y’never know who is going to be there.”
Was there anyone at the top of the list for the Is it Bantz to Grind on Tour 2020?
“Well, I was very excited as ROH was meant to have a New Japan tour there in May, so we were going to join up with New Japan and do a bit of a tour of America, so I was pretty sure there was going to be a fair few New Japan guys on that that I’d want to give it a go for. I can’t remember who was announced exactly, but I’d try to get a few off that roster. I remember they had; I think it was KENTA as announced for Supercard of Honor, so I would have tried to get KENTA. We’ll see what happens in the future. Maybe I’ll risk it all and try and get the boss man Marty Scurll.”
That would be a funny sight…
“It would be, but he might fire me. I’m not sure I want to risk it.”
I don’t know, you’re both friends…
“We are, but I don’t know if he’s a bantz to grind on type of guy. That’s the risk, eh?”
Just looking to the future, alongside the ROH shows and tournaments, is there anything else you want to do?
“I was meant to go to Australia this week if it wasn’t for all this. So, I would definitely like to go back to Australia. I would also like to go back to Japan and do another tour over there if it was possible, which I think ROH would be more than happy to let me go for a couple of weeks to do. I’d love to go back; it would feel weird not to be in Japan for a year. I want to continue to do more deathmatches and so on back at home in the UK and Ireland. I guess I just want to keep working every weekend and keep wrestling as much as possible until I decide to move if I do move. I just want to do as much as I possibly can. Especially after this, I’m going to have a second wind, where I just want to wrestle all the time, everywhere. Just more fun matches, more hardcore or extreme matches, more comedy matches. Just have more fun and travel as much as possible. I’d really like to wrestle in Canada, which was another thing that meant to happen with ROH. That’s another thing on my bucket list, so hopefully one day.”
I remember Charli Evans announcing she wanted to do a female-only DOA style tournament. Were you looking forward to the idea of that?
“Hell yeah. That would be great. I think that me and Charli Evans are the two stand-outs for deathmatches for women, but it’ll be interesting to see who else would be a part of that. I think that would be a lot of fun. I’m sure that’s scheduled for next year, so hopefully, it can still happen. I’m kind of just hoping everything with TNT goes ahead. Tournament of Death is meant to happen in the UK next year, so I hope to be a part of that. I love TNT for the fact that they’re very focused on deathmatch wrestling, and they are very much willing to let me be a part of it. So that’s why it’s one of my favourite places to wrestle. I live in a different country, and I always make sure to go.”
You’ve been trying to learn the guitar on Twitter. Will we ever see the emergence of Session Rock Martina?
“Did you see the video on Twitter? Alex Shelley is teaching me how to play, and I’m absolutely terrible at it. So I don’t think, with him as my trainer, he would approve of my terrible attempts just yet. I don’t want to blacken his good name. Once I can play a bit of a song without messing up, I think I’ll try and show the world.”
I've decided to bless you with some Rock & or Roll
Enjoy 🤘🍻 pic.twitter.com/Z3u6IRVbVO
— Session Moth Martina🍻 マーティナセッション (@mothfromdaflats) April 30, 2020
My last question is a bit of a retrospective because as I think about the matches I’ve seen you in, I’ve seen you bounced headfirst off a cage, do hardcore matches, fight a ghost at the UK Sendai Girls show. You’ve done DOA, fought Maki Itoh, and become a star in Japan. What makes the Session Moth such a universally amazing character? You could put Martina in almost any situation and it would work.
“That’s what I try to do. That’s what I think keeps wrestling exciting for me. Not just for other people watching, but for me personally. I like the fact that I can go in and have a deathmatch today, have a cage match tomorrow, have a comedy match against a ghost the next day. I think it’s because my character isn’t one dimensional. It’s because I’m a comedy character, comedy can be taken seriously. Because I’m a fun-loving character, if I’m thrown into a serious match, it’s a switch. I feel the character is multi-dimensional, so I can put it in different situations, and that’s what’s interesting to see. Like what will happen when we put Martina in this situation? Since I’m unpredictable, you don’t know how it’s going to play out.”
Any merch links you want me to include?
“I think ROH is selling a shirt of me, but I personally am not doing merch because right now, I don’t need the money as bad as other independent wrestlers. So, anytime I get the opportunity, I just say to check out other people like Damian Dunne (Chief Deputy Dunne of the Anti-Fun Police), Gene Munny. All these people that focused on wrestling full time because they will be in the position I was in last year. So, if anyone wants to support wrestlers, I’d say focus on the independents at the moment.”
All images are courtesy of RING OF HONOR/Ian Storck & Zia Hiltey