In 2013, Nelson’s Duncan McDougall was doing a social work degree and working at Subway when he chose to chase his dream of becoming a professional wrestler and move to Auckland.
“I wasn’t happy, the whole situation wasn’t for me, and a mate from Impact Pro Wrestling said it was about time I came to Auckland and gave this a serious go.”
“I talked to my Dad and he said ‘go for it’.”
That decision appears to be paying off as he prepares for a New Zealand Heavyweight title shot as his wrestling alter ego Brook Duncan and he is set to return to Nelson to play a big part in the Ultimate Championship Wrestling (UCW) event that will be at the Annesbrook Events Centre on July 29.
“To be honest, I’m amped to come home and perform in front of my home town crowd,” the former Nayland College pupil says.
Duncan has been chasing the New Zealand Heavyweight title and its champion Kurt Chaos, for the better part of year.
It’s a far cry from the teenager who learnt on blue gym mats in a Nelson backyard.
“It’s a tough business; it’s a way of life. You train hard and live for those big moments.”
At just 23 years old, the childhood wrestling fan who loved World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) stars like Kane, Shawn Michaels and Chris Jericho, has ambitions to make it his full time career in places like Mexico, America or Japan.
Over the last 12 months he’s bulked up from 78kg to 102kg.
He says while the muscular physiques of the 1980s are long left in the past, body image is still important.
His character has also gone from villain to fan favourite over the past 12 months.
“The character is a cross between that Rick Rude and Val Venis type of showboating male (pretty boy) character.”
“Eventually people wanted to cheer me so we decided to run with it”.
Over his brief career, Duncan has teamed up with WWE legends Jake “The Snake” Roberts and Haku.
He says performing in Nelson will be a career highlight.
“The event is family-oriented and I urge anyone who has never seen live wrestling before to come have a look at a form of entertainment like no other.”
Tickets are on sale now and a 10-man tag team match has already been announced for the show, with participants to be announced soon.