G: Grasshopper - Gregor
Wrestling Heritage A-Z
1980s barefoot welterweight Grasshopper was Phil Johnson from Leabrooks in Derbyshire. Made around ten television appearances against mostly unremarkable opponents, but also faced up to Dave Finlay and Jim Breaks. Prior to wrestling shaven headed Phil was a regular competitor in judo competitions around the country.
With a name like Kyriakos Anastasiadis wouldn’t you be happy just being known as the Greek?
A very stylish, skilful Greek,though, and one that had been brought up in Australia before moving to Britain and marrying a girl from Harrogate.
He gave up an interest in soccer to turn professional wrestler in 1959, often tagging in Australia with his brother Jim. El Greco was a popular light heavyweight in the 1960s British wrestling rings around Joint Promotion halls and nationally on television.
Bill Green stood 6 feet tall and nudged the top end of the light heavyweight division.
He trained at the United Amateur Wrestling Club before going along to the Dale Martin gymnasium in preparation of his professional career.
He made his professional debut in 1964, a Normal Morrell Promotion at the Lime Grove Baths, and the combination of judo and amateur wrestling knowledge made him a promising star of the 1964-5 season.
Alas it was not to be. After sixty or so bouts Bill decided professional wrestling was not for him.
His short lived career included bouts against Tug Holton, Sean Regan and Ray Fury.
He was the son of the Wigan heavyweight Charlie Green.
Rotherham's Cliff Green started out on his professional career during the war. We'd like to know more about this man who was a regular worker between 1942 and 1950, often in the North East of England, opponents including Les Kellett, Jackie Harris and Granville Lawrence.
Blackpool's Jim Green worked regularly throughout the midlands, north and Scotland from the 1950s until 1984, when he returned to the ring to wrestle on Bobby Barron's wrestling booth on Pleasure Beach. For decades prior to that Jim had been a bill topper, wrestling Bert Assirati.
He was mostly known in the guise of his alter-ego, a very well known masked man. To find out who he was read the Wrestling Heritage Top 20 Masked Men on www.wrestlingheritage.com
So unlike his alter-ego was the real life Jim that promoter Cyril Knowles relented to his requests to advertise him in his local Blackpool in his black mask but with his real name prominent on the poster. Apparently Jim was having trouble persuading his friends that he was the rule-bending hooded terror.
In the early 1960s the independent promoter Paul Lincoln introduced a plethora of new talent to British audiences, and Roger Green was one of the most popular and talented.
His interest in wrestling was nurtured by the Winchester heavyweight Dave Larsen, who had been a friend since childhood. Following three years in the amateur ranks he turned professional in 1960, facing other newcomers like Alan Sargeant, Jon Cortez and Zoltan Boscik as well as experienced professionals such as Fred Van Lotter, Eric Sands and Danny Flynn.
With the merger of Lincoln and Dale Martin promotions in January, 1966 Roger was invited to work for the Joint Promotions organisation which brought with it a new set of opponents and national television exposure.
He continued to develop throughout the 1960s, gaining national popularity as a skilful technician and one of the country's most popular welterweights.
Roger Green is shown about to post Bermondsey's Pasquale Salve.
Read our extended tribute: An Artist of the Canvas
The German heavyweight from Berlin made a three week tour of Britain in October 1963 for Dale Martin Promotions. Time enough to lose to Norman Walsh at the Royal Albert Hall.