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Billy Robinson
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Wrestler Facts

Wrestler Name: Billy Robinson
Hometown: Little Rock, Arkansas
Height: 5'11''
Weight: 240lb
Finishers: Bridging double underhook suplex, The Piledriver

Title History (2)

[2 Times]:NWA North American (Hawaii) Champion
[3 Times]:AWA British Empire Heavyweight Champion

Biography/Additional Facts

Early days in Europe

Robinson began his amateur wrestling career in England. He was British National Wrestling Champion in 1957, and in 1958 was European Open Wrestling Champion in the light heavyweight class, beating an Olympic bronze medal winner in the finals.

Billy Robinson also attended the fabled "Snake Pit" started by legendary trainer Billy Riley. The Snake Pit was one of the most respected Catch Wrestling training schools in all of the world. Legends such as Karl Gotch had trained in Catch Wrestling in the Snake Pit under Riley.

Robinson had to survive bare minimum amenities (luxuries such as a toilet were not provided at the Snake Pit), a very rough training environment (Billy Riley was very impatient with those who showed even the slightest bit of weakness on the mat) and rigorous conditioning. Robinson stayed at the Snake Pit for eight years.

In North America

Billy Robinson travelled to North America in 1970 and began wrestling for Verne Gagne's American Wrestling Association. He was one of the successful wrestlers of the American promotion known for hiring the "Real Deals" in wrestling. Billy Robinson was also the AWA British Empire Heavyweight Champion; he defended the title in both the U. S. and Canada, but was the only champion.

Billy Robinson's image as a legitimate wrestler landed him a role in the movie "The Wrestler" alongside Verne Gagne and Ed Asner.


Billy Robinson travelled to Japan where he became immensely popular as a legitimate wrestler versed in submission holds. He participated in a professional wrestling match against legendary Antonio Inoki in 1975. The match was billed as "The match between the world's top two technicians" by the Japanese press.

Billy Robinson continued an active professional wrestling career, travelling throughout the world to participate in various events.

Japanese professional wrestlers learnt the art of "hooking" and "shooting" by another of catch wrestling's greatest icons, Karl Gotch. The new movement led to the formation of the Universal Wrestling Federation (Japan).

The UWF had wrestlers like Yoshiaki Fujiwara who had personally been to the Snake Pit in Wigan. Billy Robinson was became a part of the shoot style movement including a memorable match for the UWF against fellow AWA legend Nick Bockwinkel on May 8, 1992.

After wrestling

Apart of being one of the important "shooters" of the shoot style movement, Billy Robinson began training youngsters in catch wrestling at the UWF Snake Pit in Japan. Billy Robinson has contributed immensely in training several Mixed Martial Arts legends including Kazushi Sakuraba and Josh Barnett. Currently, he trains up and coming fighter Manabu Inoue.

Robinson was inducted into the International Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2003.

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