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Zeda Zhang on OWE and growing Chinese wrestling scene

Chinese-American wrestler, Zeda Zhang, showed some promise after signing with WWE to train at the Performance Center on Jan. 4, 2017. She had a distinct look and a sound mixed martial arts background. In the following summer, she made her NXT debut and participated in the Mae Young Classic.

Unfortunately, NXT released her last June. Zhang, real name Julia Ho, recently spoke to South China Morning Post about the experience and her current foray into the Chinese wrestling scene.

In the last seven months, the former model and singer-songwriter has been forging a new path on the independent circuit. She expressed disappointment with her release and frustrations developing a character, but it didn’t deter her. After taking some bookings at indie promotions throughout the US to close the summer, she ventured back to her homeland in December.

The Charlottesville native is currently in China performing for Oriental Wrestling Entertainment (OWE). OWE made the news last week when All Elite Wrestling announced they would be working with the Shanghai-based promotion.

Zhang told South China Morning Post, “The trip has been amazing but hectic. Since my ethnic background is Chinese, I felt it would be good to wrestle in China and also visit Asia since I have fans here and want to be able to be there for all of them and get a chance to meet them. It is the least I can do for them for following and supporting me all the way across the world.”

Working with OWE also gave her the opportunity to work with legendary Japanese wrestler CIMA, the promotion’s head trainer. CIMA is most well-known for his time with Dragon Gate, the promotion he left after 21 years to help form OWE as president.

“It has definitely helped me expand in my wrestling,” she says. “I’ve been fortunate enough to train under WWE and learn the American style, but now I am able to learn the Japanese style as well as the Mexican style from people who are straight from there.”

It’s been a busy, but gratifying experience for Zeda Zhang. The wrestling scene in China is growing, and she’s interested in where it will go in the next few years. Coupled with the AEW announcement, 2019 could be the biggest year of her career, with more doors opening and a growing global fanbase. The specifics of the AEW/OWE collaboration aren’t clear yet, but hopefully it will set the table for her to do some shows with them.

Check back with Diva Dirt for updates on Zeda Zhang, AEW, and their collaboration with OWE.

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