Wrestling is coming back to prime time ITV – with a York man in the ring!

Wrestlers Will Ospreay and Martin Kirby in World Of Sport Wrestling. Photograph: ITV
25 Jul 2018 @ 7.43 pm
| Entertainment, Sport

Greetings grapple fans – we have some gripping news for you!

WOS Wrestling
  • Ten-week series starts on Saturday (July 28) at 5pm on ITV

World Of Sport Wrestling is coming back. Not only that, a York man is right in the thick of things.

One of the greatest shows in the history of British television, the wrestling was much-watch TV every Saturday. Now ITV has supercharged it for a 21st century audience, and given it a prime Saturday teatime slot.

And the man they have chosen to MC the show is Phil Seymour.

YorkMix readers will remember Phil as the man who went from being stadium announcer for York City Knights to MCing a boxing world title fight within five years.

And now he’s starring on ITV…

‘Incredibly excited’

Looking dapper – Phil in his publicity shot for the show
Phil was asked to MC a pilot version of WOS Wrestling, which aired on New Year’s Eve 2016.

There was talk of a series – but then it went quiet until earlier this year when the father-of-two got the call. He told us:

  • We filmed the series a couple of months ago, so all ten episodes are already filmed and ready to air.

    I was incredibly excited to get the gig! I watched World of Sport wrestling all through my childhood, I grew up watching Big Daddy, Giant Haystacks and the rest, so when I was asked to MC the pilot show 18 months ago I was blown away.

He said the wrestlers – including Martin Kirby from Thirsk and Nathan Cruz from Hull, treated him like an old friend.

“They’re a great bunch, so hard working and a lot of fun. We filmed for three days solid and never stopped laughing!”

‘Proper family entertainment’

Kay Lee Ray and Viper in action
Phil, a father of two who was born and brought up in York, said his role in the show had people talking.

  • My friends and family seem pretty proud. We had to keep quiet about it until recently when I was told we were allowed to talk about it, so it’s been a bit odd, but a lot of my friends are really excited to see it

    Like me, they grew up with it on ITV and this is a chance for them and their kids to enjoy it together. It’s proper family entertainment.

He added: “To get to work on a full series was a real dream come true, it was amazing fun and I really can’t wait for everyone to see what the team have produced, it’ll be really special.”

WOS Wrestling

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Billed as “family sports entertainment” WOS Wrestling was filmed in front of a live audience in Norwich in May.

In the show some of the UK’s top names in the sport fight it out for the WOS Wrestling Championship belt.

“There is a massive indie wrestling scene in the UK and a strong nostalgia for the wrestling shows of our youth,” said ITV Studios Entertainment’s Tom McLennan.

“WOS Wrestling will combine the best of the past with incredible talent available today to make a fun, exciting and thrilling show that the whole family can enjoy.”

Wrestling was a big part of Saturday afternoons on ITV, with World of Sport airing from 1965 to 1985. Now it’s coming to a new generation.



Phil’s website