SWE grappler from Kirkton sees his career going from strength to strength

© DC ThomsonBrian Christie at training.
Brian Christie at training.

The Rock, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Triple H and… Brian Christie?

Three of the above are household names in the world of professional wrestling but for Kirkton grappler Brian, the dream is to match his heroes and become a WWE regular himself.

The 21-year-old, who is autistic, has been a fan of the bruising sport since he was a kid.

Now he wants to turn his hobby into a high-earning job.

After joining Scottish Wrestling Entertainment (SWE) and taking part in bouts, Brian is determined to become a full-time professional.

And he’s hoping to one day make it to the big time – and even be a Wrestlemania headliner in the US.

© DC Thomson
Brian Christie sparring with Brandon Tierney.

Brian said: “I have always been a huge fan of wrestling on the television and I really loved watching it as a child.

“I wanted to get into it when I was older and now I have. I have been a real fan since I was eight.

“I started to take it up professionally when I was 19 and now I would like to do it full-time if I can.

“I still remember my first bout in the Caird Hall and I really would like to spend the rest of my life wrestling.

“My ring name is The People’s Choice which I think is really good.”

Last year, Brian started working with the charity Enable, which supports people with learning disabilities and their families.

The charity is designed to help people develop their skills and find work.

Employment co-ordinator Scott Ferguson worked closely with Brian.

He said: “Brian was wrestling when he came to work with me and I can see how his confidence has really grown.

“It has been great for Brian and really helped him.

“The aim with Enable is to try to help people with life skills and get them into the workplace.

“The bottom line is getting people into a job and essentially working at breaking down the disability barriers to employment.

“It is difficult to find employers who are willing to provide opportunities in these tough times.”

Scott added: “Brian has come on leaps and bounds and is now ready to get into the workplace.

“He’s totally changed since he started wrestling and it has been a great boost to him.”

Brian’s mum Gillian, 42, and dad Brian Snr, 47, are his greatest fans and have been ringside for some of his biggest bouts – with the pair being amazed by their son’s talent.

Gillian said: “It was horrible seeing his first contest and I always said I wasn’t going to come and watch.

“But then I did and I had to watch him through my fingers.

“He is a much different person in the ring, from being this quiet, big boy to roaring loudly.

“His gran could not believe it was the same person when we showed her the footage on our mobile phones.”

Meanwhile, Scott insists he’s delighted by Brian’s progress and believes starting the sport has made an incredible difference to his life.

He said: “Right at the start we had to do travel training as Brian was not an independent traveller.

“He has come a long way and had successful work experience roles in HMV and Groucho’s.

“He’s ready for the workplace and just needs a chance.”