Grayson Waller
Waller in October 2023
Birth nameMatthew Farrelly
Born (1990-03-21) 21 March 1990 (age 33)
Sydney, Australia
Professional wrestling career
Ring name(s)Grayson Waller
Matty Wahlberg
Billed height6 ft 3 in (191 cm)
Billed weight205 lb (93 kg)
Billed fromSydney, Australia
Trained byRobbie Eagles
Madison Eagles
Debut15 April 2017

Matthew Farrelly (born 21 March 1990) is an Australian professional wrestler. He is currently signed to WWE, where he performs on the SmackDown brand under the ring name Grayson Waller. He is currently in a tag team with Austin Theory as A-Town-Down Under. Before signing with WWE, he previously wrestled on the independent circuit under the ring name Matty Wahlberg.

Outside of professional wrestling, Farrelly was a contestant on season six of Australian Survivor.

Professional wrestling career

Independent circuit (2017–2021)

On 15 April 2017, at a Newcastle Pro Wrestling event, Farrelly made his debut under the ring name Matty Wahlberg, losing to SnapChad.[1] Wahlberg would form a tag team with Carter Dreams, known as The BABES (Blonde And Blue Eyed Squad), managed by Harley Wonderland. Wahlberg then returned to singles competition and he would receive a PWA Heavyweight Championship match against Caveman Ugg, but lost to Ugg at the PWA Black Label: Wahlberg Vs. Ugg event in March 2019.[2] At the PWA Black Label: Break Their Back & Make Them Rumble event, Wahlberg lost to TJ Perkins. At the PWA Black Label: Colosseum event, Wahlberg won the 2019 Colosseum tournament by defeating Chris Basso in the first round, Orange Cassidy in the semi-finals, and Travis Banks in the final.[3] After the PWA Black Label: It Started Out With A Kiss event went off the air, Wahlberg addressed the live crowd, informing them that he was leaving PWA.[4][5]

WWE (2021–present)

NXT (2021–2023)

On 14 March 2021, it was reported that Farrelly had signed with WWE.[6] On the 11 June episode of 205 Live, he made his WWE debut under the ring name Grayson Waller, defeating Sunil Singh.[7] On the 28 September episode NXT, Waller unsuccessfully challenged Roderick Strong for the NXT Cruiserweight Championship. On the 9 November episode of NXT, he lost to Solo Sikoa in a triple threat match which also included LA Knight.[8]

On the 23 November episode of NXT, Waller berated the fans, thus turning heel.[9] At NXT WarGames, he teamed up with Bron Breakker, Carmelo Hayes, and Tony D'Angelo as Team 2.0, where they defeated Team Black & Gold (Johnny Gargano, LA Knight, Pete Dunne, and Tommaso Ciampa) in a WarGames match.[10] On the following episode of NXT, Waller brutally attacked Johnny Gargano during his farewell promo where he thanked his fans and friends, thus cementing his heel turn.[11] On the 21 December episode of NXT, he attacked Dexter Lumis after the latter's match and announces that he will dismantle the old NXT one by one, and he then confronted AJ Styles, whom he had criticized on social networks a few days before.[12] At NXT: New Years Evil on 4 January 2022, Styles once again confronted Waller, resulting into a brawl between the pair.[13] The following week, Waller lost to Styles. After the match, he was attacked by the returning LA Knight.[14] On the 1 February episode of NXT, Waller, alongside his new "insurance policy" Sanga, interfered in Knight's match against Joe Gacy, causing Knight to lose the match.[15] At NXT: Roadblock on 8 March, Waller defeated Knight in a Last Man Standing match when he used Sanga to make it to his feet and beat the ten count.[16]

At NXT Stand & Deliver, Waller failed to win the NXT North American Championship in a ladder match.[17] Waller and Sanga would enter the tag team gauntlet match for the vacant NXT Tag Team Championship, where they were eliminated by the Creed Brothers.[18] Waller then turned on Sanga and defeated him a week later on the 19 April episode of NXT.[19] Waller then briefly feuded with the debuting Nathan Frazer,[20] who he lost to at Spring Breakin'.[21] Waller would then pursue the NXT North American Championship by tricking Carmelo Hayes into signing the contract. At NXT: The Great American Bash on 5 July, Waller lost to Hayes due to interference from Trick Williams and Wes Lee.[22] Despite this, Waller blamed his loss on Wes Lee and defeated him on the 26 July episode of NXT due to interference from Williams.[23] Waller then started a rivalry with Apollo Crews, defeating him on the 30 August episode of NXT after "injuring" his eye,[24] but lost to him at NXT Halloween Havoc in a casket match.[25]

At NXT Deadline, Waller won the inaugural Iron Survivor Challenge to become the number one contender for Bron Breakker's NXT Championship.[26] The match was later scheduled for NXT: New Year's Evil on 10 January 2023,[27] where the match ended when the middle rope snapped, causing Waller to fall out of the ring and be counted out, allowing Breakker to retain the title. A steel cage match between the two for the title was subsequently scheduled for NXT Vengeance Day on 4 February,[28] where Waller again failed to win the title; this marked Waller's final NXT appearance.[29]

SmackDown & A-Town Down Under (2023–present)

As part of the 2023 WWE Draft, Waller was drafted to the SmackDown brand.[30][31] He made his SmackDown debut on 19 May 2023, interviewing AJ Styles on The Grayson Waller Effect. At Money in the Bank, Waller interrupted the returning John Cena, where he confronted and attacked The Cenation Leader before getting hit with an Attitude Adjustment.[32] On the 7 July episode of SmackDown, Waller interviewed Edge on The Grayson Waller Effect. Waller then made his main roster in-ring debut later that night against Edge, who would defeat him. Despite the loss, Edge would praise Waller.[33] On the 15 September episode of SmackDown, Waller interviewed Cena on The Grayson Waller Effect for The Bloodline to come out. On the 10 November episode of SmackDown, Waller and his new tag team partner Austin Theory (who are collectively known as A-Town Down Under) provoked the newest member of the SmackDown roster Kevin Owens. Owens attacked both Waller and Theory and was suspended by the WWE.[34] On the 15 December episode of SmackDown, both Waller and Theory lost in the first rounds of the United States Championship #1 Contender Tournament to former rival Carmelo Hayes and Owens respectively.[35] Waller returned to NXT at NXT: New Year's Evil on 2 January 2024 and was put into a match against Trick Williams for Williams' Iron Survivor Challenge title match opportunity by Hayes. Waller lost the match after interference from Owens.[36]

Other media

In 2019, Farrelly appeared on Australian Survivor: Champions vs. Contenders 2. He competed on the Contenders team, and garnered attention for his outspoken personality, essentially playing a version of his Matty Wahlberg wrestling character on reality television. He would be eliminated from the competition after several weeks on the island.[37]

Farrelly also made a cameo appearance on Young Rock in 2021, playing the role of Ric Flair.[38]

Farrelly made his first video game appearance in WWE 2K23 as Grayson Waller.[citation needed]

Personal life

Farrelly is a former Golden Gloves boxer in Australia and also worked as a high school history teacher while wrestling in the Australian independent circuit. He left his teaching job in 2021 when he got signed with the WWE and became a full-time professional wrestler.[39] Farelly is a Sydney Roosters fan.[40]

Championships and accomplishments

References

  1. ^ "Newy Pro House Show #5". Cagematch. Retrieved 28 December 2021.
  2. ^ "Grayson Waller Cagematch Profile". Cagematch. Retrieved 26 December 2021.
  3. ^ a b "WrestleWatch- PWA Colosseum 2019 (Night 2)". The Arena Media. 22 October 2019. Retrieved 26 December 2021.
  4. ^ "Grayson Waller Instagram (video)". Grayson Waller Instagram.
  5. ^ "Report: Australian Wrestlers Matty Wahlberg And Steph De Lander Sign With WWE". Heel By Nature. 14 March 2021.
  6. ^ Nason, Josh (14 March 2021). "WWE signs two Australian talents to developmental contracts". Wrestling Observer. Retrieved 24 December 2021.
  7. ^ Middleton, Mark (12 June 2021). "International Star Wins WWE Debut On 205 Live". Wrestling Inc. Retrieved 24 December 2021.
  8. ^ "WWE NXT results: Nov. 9, 2021". wwe.com. 9 November 2021. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  9. ^ Moore, John (23 November 2021). "11/23 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of Carmelo Hayes vs. Johnny Gargano vs. Pete Dunne for the NXT North American Title, Tommaso Ciampa vs. Grayson Waller in a non-title match, Mandy Rose vs. Cora Jade in a non-title match, Kayden Carter and Kacy Catanzaro vs. Indi Hartwell and Persia Pirotta". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  10. ^ Moore, John (5 December 2021). "NXT WarGames results: Moore's live review of two WarGames matches, Roderick Strong vs. Joe Gacy for the NXT Cruiserweight Championship, Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel vs. Kyle O'Reilly and Von Wagner for the NXT Tag Titles, Cameron Grimes vs. Duke Hudson in a hair vs. hair match". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 6 December 2021. Retrieved 14 February 2022.
  11. ^ Hazelwood, Bruce Lee (7 December 2021). "12/7 NXT on USA Report: Hazelwood's live alt-perspective on WarGames fallout, Gargano's goodbye, O'Reilly vs. Wagner, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Archived from the original on 22 November 2022. Retrieved 21 November 2022.
  12. ^ Moore, John (21 December 2021). "12/21 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of AJ Styles responding to Grayson Waller, Raquel Gonzalez vs. Dakota Kai in a street fight, Pete Dunne vs. Tony D'Angelo, Dexter Lumis vs. Trick Williams, Julius Creed and Brutus Creed vs. Zack Gibson and James Drake, Von Wagner in action". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 23 December 2021. Retrieved 9 January 2022.
  13. ^ Moore, John (4 January 2022). "1/4 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of Tommaso Ciampa vs. Bron Breakker for the NXT Title, Gunther, Fabian Aichner, and Marcel Barthel vs. Riddle and MSK, Mandy Rose vs. Raquel Gonzalez vs. Cora Jade for the NXT Women's Title, Carmelo Hayes vs. Roderick Strong in a title unification match, AJ Styles confronts Grayson Waller". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 5 January 2022. Retrieved 4 January 2022.
  14. ^ Moore, John (11 January 2022). "1/11 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of AJ Styles vs. Grayson Waller, Santos Escobar vs. Xyon Quinn, Pete Dunne vs. Tony D'Angelo in a Crowbar on a Pole match, Solo Sikoa vs. Boa, Kacy Catanzaro, Kayden Carter, and Amari Miller vs. Indi Hartwell, Portia Pirotta, and Wendy Choo". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 24 January 2022. Retrieved 14 February 2022.
  15. ^ Moore, John (1 February 2022). "2/1 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of Bron Breakker and Tommaso Ciampa vs. Joaquin Wilde and Raul Mendoza, Cora Jade vs. Raquel Gonzalez, Gunther, Fabian Aichner, and Marcel Barthel vs. Roderick Strong, Julius Creed, and Brutus Creed, LA Knight vs. Joe Gacy". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 3 February 2022. Retrieved 14 February 2022.
  16. ^ Moore, John (8 March 2022). "3/8 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of the Roadblock themed show featuring Born Breaker vs. Dolph Ziggler vs. Tommaso Ciampa for the NXT Title, Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel vs. The Creed Brothers for the NXT Tag Titles, LA Knight vs. Grayson Waller in a Last Man Standing match". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 4 December 2022. Retrieved 8 February 2023.
  17. ^ Moore, John (2 April 2022). "NXT Stand & Deliver results: Moore's live review of Dolph Ziggler vs. Bron Breakker for the NXT Title, Mandy Rose vs. Cora Jade vs. Io Shirai vs. Kay Lee Ray for the NXT Women's Title, Fabian Aichner and Marcel Barthel vs. MSK vs. The Creed Brothers for the NXT Tag Titles, the NXT North American Title ladder match". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved 2 April 2022.
  18. ^ Wells, Kelly (12 April 2022). "4/12 NXT ON USA REPORT: Wells's Report on Dakota Kai vs. Mandy Rose, Cameron Grimes vs. Solo Sikoa, tag team championship gauntlet, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 24 November 2022.
  19. ^ Moore, John (19 April 2022). "4/19 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of Santos Escobar vs. Carmelo Hayes, Tiffany Stratton vs. Sarray, Natalya vs. Tatum Paxley, Grayson Waller vs. Sanga, NXT Tag Champions Pretty Deadly appear". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved 27 April 2022.
  20. ^ Wells, Kelly (26 April 2022). "4/12 NXT ON USA REPORT: Wells's Report on Nikkita Lyons vs. Lash Legend, Solo Sikoa vs. Trick Williams, Briggs & Jensen & Henley vs. Legado del Fantasma, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 8 February 2023.
  21. ^ Moore, John (3 May 2022). "5/3 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of Spring Breakin' with Bron Breakker vs. Joe Gacy for the NXT Title, Cameron Grimes vs. Carmelo Hayes vs. Solo Sikoa for the NXT North American Title, The Viking Raiders vs. The Creeds, Cora Jade and Nikkita Lyons vs. Natalya and Lash Legend, Nathan Frazer vs. Grayson Waller, Tony D'Angelo and Santos Escobar meeting". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved 4 May 2022.
  22. ^ Moore, John (5 July 2022). "7/5 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of Bron Breakker vs. Cameron Grimes for the NXT Title, Gigi Dolin and Jacy Jayne vs. Roxanne Perez and Cora Jade for the NXT Women's Tag Titles, Carmelo Hayes vs. Grayson Waller for the NXT NA Title, The Creeds vs. Roderick Strong and Damon Kemp for the NXT Tag Titles". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 6 July 2022. Retrieved 6 July 2022.
  23. ^ Moore, John (26 July 2021). "7/26 NXT 2.0 results: Moore's review of Roderick Strong, Julius Creed, Brutus Creed, and Damon Kemp vs. Tony D'Angelo, Channing "Stacks" Lorenzo, Raul Mendoza, and Joaquin Wilde, Apollo Crews vs. Xyon Quinn, Grayson Waller vs. Wes Lee, Giovanni Vinci vs. Andre Chase". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved 4 August 2022.
  24. ^ Hazelwood, Bruce Lee (30 August 2022). "8/30 NXT 2.0 REPORT: Hazelwood's live report on Worlds Collide go-home with slew of tag matches, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 8 February 2023.
  25. ^ Moore, John (22 October 2022). "NXT Halloween Havoc results: Moore's live review of Bron Breakker vs. Ilja Dragunov vs. JD McDonagh for the NXT Title, Mandy Rose vs. Alba Fyre for the NXT Women's Title, Carmelo Hayes vs. Wes Lee vs. Von Wagner vs. Oro Mensah vs. Nathan Frazer in a ladder match for the vacant North American Title, Roxanne Perez vs. Cora Jade in a Weapons Wild match". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 23 October 2022. Retrieved 23 October 2022.
  26. ^ Moore, John (10 December 2022). "NXT Deadline results: Moore's live review of Bron Breakker vs. Apollo Crews for the NXT Championship, Pretty Deadly vs. Kofi Kingston and Xavier Woods for the NXT Tag Team Titles, men's and women's Iron Survivor Challenge matches, Alba Fyre vs. Isla Dawn". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Archived from the original on 11 December 2022. Retrieved 10 December 2022.
  27. ^ Mrosko, Geno (11 December 2022). "NXT New Year's Evil set for Jan. 10 with two big title matches". Cageside Seats. Archived from the original on 14 December 2022. Retrieved 14 December 2022.
  28. ^ Hazelwood, Bruce Lee (10 January 2023). "1/10 NXT NEW YEAR'S EVIL REPORT: Hazelwood's live report on Breakker vs. Waller for title, #1 contender's battle royal, Pretty Deadly in the gauntlet, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 11 January 2023.
  29. ^ Hazelwood, Bruce Lee (4 February 2023). "2/4 NXT VENGEANCE DAY REPORT: Hazelwood's live report on five title matches out of six, Breakker vs. Waller steel cage, Perez vs. Dolin vs. Jayne, The New Day defends, more". Pro Wrestling Torch. Archived from the original on 5 February 2023. Retrieved 5 February 2023.
  30. ^ "See all the results from the 2023 Draft". WWE. 28 April 2023.
  31. ^ Keller, Wade (1 May 2023). "5/1 WWE Monday Night Raw Results: Keller's report on WWE Draft, Riddle vs. Uso, Judgment Day vs. LWO mixed tag, Lesnar, Cody". Pro Wrestling Torch. Retrieved 1 May 2023.
  32. ^ Dosskey, Michael (1 July 2023). "John Cena Appears At WWE Money In The Bank, Adjusts Grayson Waller's Attitude". Wrestling Inc. Retrieved 8 July 2023.
  33. ^ Aguilar, Matthew (7 July 2023). "Edge Shoots Down Retirement, Battles Grayson Waller in SmackDown In-ring Debut". ComicBook.com. Retrieved 8 July 2023.
  34. ^ "Kevin Owens Suspended For His Actions On 11/10 WWE SmackDown". Yahoo Entertainment. 11 November 2023. Retrieved 11 November 2023.
  35. ^ Mrosko, Geno (15 December 2023). "Carmelo Hayes, Kevin Owens advance in United States Title Tournament". Cageside Seats. Retrieved 16 December 2023.
  36. ^ Powell, Jason (2 January 2024). "NXT TV results (1/2): Moore's review of New Year's Evil with Ilja Dragunov vs. Trick Williams for the NXT Championship, Lyra Valkyria vs. Blair Davenport for the NXT Women's Championship". Pro Wrestling Dot Net. Retrieved 3 January 2024.
  37. ^ "Australia's Grayson Waller looking to go from reality TV to championship gold as part of new-look WWE NXT". The Sporting News. 20 October 2021. Retrieved 26 December 2021.
  38. ^ "Matty Farrelly- IMDb". IMDb. 26 December 2021. Retrieved 26 December 2021.
  39. ^ "Sydney History teacher turned pro WWE wrestler opens up about his career". Sydney Morning Herald. 16 March 2023. Retrieved 15 December 2023.
  40. ^ "Roasted Podcast: WWE Superstar Grayson Waller on Apple Podcasts".
  41. ^ a b c "CAGEMATCH » Wrestlers Database »Grayson Waller» Titles". cagematch.net. Cagematch. Retrieved 23 November 2021.
  42. ^ cite web|url= https://www.cagematch.net/?id=26&nr=4837
  43. ^ cite web|url= https://www.cagematch.net/?id=2&nr=19310&page=12
  44. ^ cite web|url= https://www.cagematch.net/?id=1&nr=184381
  45. ^ cite web|url= https://www.cagematch.net/?id=97&nr=239#2018
  46. ^ cite web|url= https://www.cagematch.net/?id=97&nr=238#2018
  47. ^ cite web|url= https://www.cagematch.net/?id=97&nr=237#2018
  48. ^ Russell, Skylar (10 December 2022). "Grayson Waller Wins Men's Iron Survivor Challenge At NXT Deadline 2022". Fightful. Retrieved 18 October 2023.