Tuesday, February 27, 2024

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Aja Perera is ready for any and all competition

Aja Perera is best known for being the current SHINE Nova Champion in the SHINE Wrestling promotion. She is the third woman to hold this title which was introduced in the summer of 2017. Perera has accomplished a significant goal in her young career by becoming a champion at SHINE 54.

One by one, Perera is currently picking off the stable, Cutie Pie Club. She was able to take down the leader, Candy Cartwright when she defeated her for the aforementioned title.

She is coming off a successful title defense from SHINE 55 where she defeated the newest member of the club, Dementia D’Rose. Next, she has her eyes set on another member of her rival club and that is a current Impact Wrestling Knockout, Kiera Hogan.

Prior to her next title defense, which is in two weeks on Jan. 19 at SHINE 56, Diva Dirt’s Nick Wilkinson was able to get to know her better and share her story thus far.

Perera is known for her love of pizza (pineapple on top), and her love for the Zelda video game series. Her current gimmick is that of an EXTRAterrestrial. She explains in more detail where her persona of The EXTRAterrestrial came from.

“I actually developed it while I was wrestling and training in Japan. I was there alone, adjusting to the language barrier, culture, etc. And it was very scary. No one looked like me, spoke like me, different humors, EVERYTHING. Full pun intended, I felt like an alien. But instead of trying to conform, I stayed myself. I’m different and that’s okay. And if you’ve seen me wrestle or known me personally, I’m full of energy and all over the place. All of my friends tell me I’m extra [laughs], so I did a play on words with EXTRAterrestrial. To me, it means to just be yourself. I do the most, I am the most. Not to mention my wrestling is one of a kind and out of this world. Embrace who you are and put it front and center!”

Perera is also known to don a cape to the ring. This goes along with having the moniker of “Super” attached to her name. Having the visualization of a Mighty Molly resemblance, she further explains the influence of the cape.

Well, the cape is retired now that I’m EXTRA. But I can’t lie, I do miss it! My biggest inspiration [is] The Hurricane through and through! He was one of the first wrestlers I discovered when I began watching wrestling as a kid.” 

Mentioning that the cape should make a comeback, she had the following to say:

Haha! Well, I have another EXTRA accessory coming. I have to make an entrance!”

At the still young age of 24, Perera started her wrestling journey in 2013 when she was only 18. She explained which wrestler has given her the best advice in her young career.

“I actually got the best advice very recently. I wrestled Havok [Jessicka] last month or so and she just really told me to believe in myself, be aware of what I deserve and don’t take anything less. Which is something I regularly struggle with. I definitely believe in myself more because of her.”

Along with SHINE, Perera has competed in several organizations which include GirlFight, Canadian Wrestling’s Elite, and Queens of Combat, just to name a few. After achieving her goal to wrestle in SHINE, she mentions where she hopes to wrestle next for the new year.

“SHIMMER! I’ve done dark matches, but this year I WILL be [on] the roster.” 

WWE’s Mae Young Classic tournament has been a huge opportunity for women in wrestling for the past two years. Although a third tournament has yet to be announced, The EXTRAterrestrial explains what it would mean to her if WWE asked her to compete in the tournament.

“Oh my gosh, I would love to! For WWE to notice me and even ask [that] I participate in such a prestigious tournament would be insane! I would feel like I’m in a rags to riches story! [Laughs] I started this journey as a confused 18-year old that really had no clue what to do with my life, to then traveling the world and being blessed enough to do what I love for a living. Then, having an opportunity like that would tell me that I’m on the right track and doing what I’m meant to be in this world”

Perera further explains that if she ever secures a spot in the Mae Young Classic, she would prefer to face someone whom she hasn’t yet.

“This goes for the potential MYC and my career in general. Give me all the new opponents! That’s the only way to get better at this craft!”

Lastly, Perera mentions someone she would have loved to compete against in the ring while they were in their prime.

“She recently retired, but Manami Toyota. She has such a legacy, between herself and Aja Kong, she changed the way women’s wrestling was perceived. She was the reason I have such a deep love for Joshi wrestling and desired to wrestle in Japan in the first place. I would learn so much facing her and it’d also be a huge test!”

Check back in with Diva Dirt for future exclusive interviews!

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