Home Op-Ed Session Moth Martina is ready for the spotlight

Session Moth Martina is ready for the spotlight

When Jordan Devlin declared himself the best Irish wrestler in the world at NXT UK Takeover: Blackpool, Finn Balor arrived to prove otherwise. But he wasn’t the only other name in contention. Fit Finlay is a living legend, and Becky Lynch is arguably the biggest wrestler in the industry right now. Some might even point to Seamus, if they felt so inclined. But as Devlin and Balor took each other to the limit in Blackpool, fans across the world hailed another performer as the gold standard for Irish wrestling: the Session Moth, Martina.

Session Moth Martina is one of the most beloved wrestlers of any gender in the independent wrestling scene. She began her career as Kazza G before developing her current persona at Over the Top Wrestling (OTT). Her name is an Irish slang term for, essentially, a party girl, and she definitely brings the sesh with her wherever she goes. Her entrance themes – which have included Mark McCabe’s “Maniac 2000”, Cascada’s “Everytime We Touch” and Darude’s “Sandstorm” – turn every venue into a nightclub. She’s rarely seen without a can of beer in hand, and never without her signature leopard print. She’s grinded on everyone from Minoru Suzuki to Low Ki. She’s entertaining, charismatic, totally shameless, and also, as luck would have it, an incredible in-ring performer.

Martina came up at a time when the Irish wrestling scene was bereft of female competitors. Most of her early career consisted of intergender matches, with her only regular female opponent being fellow pioneer Katey Harvey. She found a natural home for her talents at OTT, a promotion that favours broad comedy and high-energy matches, and Becky Lynch has praised her work there. The Session Moth has twice held the OTT Women’s Championship, and was the inaugural winner of the OTT Gender Neutral Championship, holding both belts simultaneously for a time.

She’s since performed all over the world. Just last year, she toured twice with Stardom as a member of Oedo Tai, where she challenged Io Shirai for the Wonder of Stardom Championship. She captained Team Moth at Pro-Wrestling: EVE’s SHEvivor Series, challenged three times for the wXw Women’s Championship, and enjoyed a one-day reign as the ICW Women’s Champion before immediately losing the title to Viper. Her opponents have included Candice LeRae, Mia Yim and Kimber Lee, as well just about the entire NXT UK women’s division. She’s proven herself time and again in the ring, and it’s gratifying to see people take notice.

Some of those calling Martina the best Irish wrestler in the world may have had their tongues somewhere in the vicinity of their cheeks. But the love is real, as reflected by loud calls from fans for both NXT UK and All Elite Wrestling to sign the Session Moth. I saw Martina at the first wrestling show I ever attended, and even though she shared the card with a Pete Dunne vs Chris Hero main event, no one excited me more than her. For weeks after, I babbled to anyone would would listen, or pretend to, about this amazing women’s wrestler I’d seen in a theater in Galway with the worst crowd in the world. I’m still babbling about her all these years later. I’m doing it right now.

If I have any hesitation about AEW or NXT UK signing the Session Moth, it’s that I worry promotions targeting a more mainstream audience, especially NXT UK, will take the sesh out of the moth. This is a woman who overshadows Joey Ryan whenever they tag by pulling a condom from her underwear, pulling it over her hand and fisting her opponents’ mouths. Maybe she wouldn’t lose too much of what makes her great if a move like that was off the table. But what if she couldn’t grind? What if she couldn’t chug a bag of cans mid-match?

It’s hard to say. But it’s easy to see that Martina is ready for the main stage. She has the skill. She has the appeal. She has the cans. It’s time for the sesh to go worldwide.

Dean Buckley
Irish wrestling fan, film and TV critic. Follow me on Twitter at @deanfbuckley