Valkyrie (Aoife Cusack) is an Irish independent professional wrestler competing for Irish promotions such as Main Stage Wrestling and Over the Top Wrestling. Showing promise and confidence in the ring she’s not one to take lightly. Coming off her victory at MSW Coolock this past Monday, we caught up with Valkyrie for an interview on her developing career, the Irish wrestling scene and women’s wrestling revolution.
Q: What inspired you to get into wrestling, who or what were your influences and how long have you been doing it?
Valkyrie: “It was kind of a slow build up for me. My brother used to be mad into it when he was younger, so I used to watch it with him when I was having my lunch. Then he kind of grew out of it as I kind of just got more invested. I think it was around 2011 when I really got hooked during Christian and Randy Orton’s feud. Back then, that was what really really hooked me. And then for women’s influence I suppose AJ Lee would’ve been the first girl that I really got invested in. And then as time went on I just got more and more hooked and then no one else in my family is really into wrestling now, it’s just kind of all me.”
Q: What’s it like on the Irish independent circuit?
Valkyrie: “The Irish circuit is exploding. Its really blown up ever since OTT (Over the Top Wrestling) started up. They run shows really regularly that get a lot of attention and as well as Floslam and everyone just going online now with their streams it’s just more easy to access wrestling. It’s easier to get out there now than it ever was before.”
Q: How do feel playing a heel (villain)? Would you rather be a babyface (hero) or is the heel more fun for you?
Valkyrie: It is much more fun. I find it a lot easier and natural to slip into the heel role. But I do love being a face and hitting all my big moves as well. I like a mix of both.
Q: Who’s your current favourite?
Valkyrie: “Sasha (Banks) is my absolute all-time favourite. She’s absolutely amazing. Her and Charlotte, oh and Bayley, no I can’t *laughs*. But she is my favourite. Sasha is my wallpaper on my phone and everything, she’s very inspiring to me.
Q: What do you think of WWE seeking more UK talent and what that says for the UK/ Irish wrestling scene?
Valkyrie: “It’s amazing yeah. Tucker, Jordan Devlin, Finn Bálor obviously, Becky Lynch, Ireland really is like a cradle for wrestling, we seem to have a thing for it and I’m hoping to continue with that.”
Q: What is your opinion of the “Women’s Revolution”? Is it as ground-breaking as WWE are saying?
Valkyrie: “It’s definitely ground-breaking and it’s not just in WWE. I think everywhere, women in sports are just exploding. UFC as well. I think it’s great that they’re really bringing in the top women with the girls from Japan being signed now as well. The division is really heating up.”
Q: What’s your opinion on WWE’s upcoming women’s tournament, The Mae Young Classic?
Valkyrie: “I’m really really excited for it. I really am. I think it’s going to be absolutely amazing and the girls are going to get to showcase that they’re every bit as good as the lads.”
Q: Is WWE the dream/goal or has the ‘Indie Boom’ of the past few years made the Independent Circuit more appealing to you as it is to some?
Valkyrie: “WWE is definitely what got me into it and it was the goal from the beginning but I began to get a lot more into watching Japanese girls and the girls from all over Europe and it makes me want to travel more to have that experience of going everywhere before getting there to WWE. Once I’m out of college, I’d love to go over to Japan and ‘Stardom’ would be amazing to get into. I’d love to be training there.
Q: What are your overall goals in wrestling? Long and short term.
Valkyrie: I take small goals, every day, one step at a time. I’m just going to keep running with it till I get to my big end goal with WWE. Once I get there then there’ll be an ultimate goal again from there to work towards.
Main Stage Wrestling