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IMPACT Wrestling's Rohit Raju on going solo, whether wrestling as a singles competitor changes his in-ring style & more (Exclusive)

  • Sportskeeda's Darren Paltrowitz spoke with the rising IMPACT Wrestling's rising star, who opened up on a lot of topics.
  • Rohit Raju is ready for stardom as a singles competitor in IMPACT.
EXPERT COLUMNIST
Exclusive
Modified 15 May 2020, 09:55 IST

IMPACT Wrestling
IMPACT Wrestling's Rohit Raju / Photo courtesy of IMPACT Wrestling

In 2019, IMPACT Wrestling grabbed a lot of headlines via its move to AXS TV for IMPACT!, its flagship weekly two-hour program. IMPACT Wrestling kicked off 2020 strong with Hard To Kill pay-per-view at which Tessa Blanchard made history in becoming the first female to win a men's world championship belt in professional wrestling. One of the IMPACT Wrestling stars who has fans talking as of late is Rohit Raju.

Long associated with the Desi Hit Squad, Rohit Raju made his televised IMPACT debut on the May 11, 2017 episode of the iMPACT! show. That same year, he was the winner of IMPACT's Global Forged competition.

I had the pleasure of speaking with Rohit Raju by phone on May 14, 2020. In addition to the full audio of the interview, below is an exclusive to Sportskeeda is a transcription of a few minutes from the discussion. More on "The Mocha Skinned Manimal" can be found online at www.twitter.com/HakimZane and/or www.impactwrestling.com.



On whether he always planned on wrestling solo and not as part of a team or stable

Rohit Raju: My intention when I got into wrestling was to be a singles wrestler, not to be a tag wrestler. I have tagged with plenty of people before, including all my [Desi] Hit Squad brothers, but the main goal is to be my own person.

On whether wrestling as a singles competitor changes his in-ring style

Rohit Raju: No, the majority of my career,, it has been [just] me, so I get to shine a little bit more, I finally get my time. Instead of being the black sheep, like I always like to say, where I'm "the bad kid in the family" that's always getting in trouble by the patriarch, by Gama [Singh], which is always a good dynamic. You can [only] run with that for so long.

Now's the time when I get to show my real feelings. I think my bitterness, my frustration, my anger from where I am in professional wrestling, where I think I should be. If you don't take pride in your work and think that you deserve a better spot, then I don't know what to tell you. I'm not trying to be egotistical, but I do know that I'm way more talented than being at the bottom constantly.

Now Impact is finally giving me that ball and giving me a little taste and saying, "Show us what you've got." Now I get to show them what I've got, and I think the promos alone have spoken for themselves. I'm seeing a lot of good feedback, not only from people from the office, backstage and other wrestlers, but the fans that are like "I wasn't a fan of his before, but now I am."

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So now it's that mentality where I get to chase that, put this boulder-sized chip on my shoulder and beg for someone to knock it off. I actually like that dynamic. I've seen some people dig it, some people don't... To be honest, my favorites promos are the guys that start off quiet like Ric Flair. He starts off and the next thing you know he gets fired up. That's my favorite style. I guess it's not for everybody, but that's what I'm going with. You either like it or you don't.


Published 15 May 2020, 09:55 IST
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