K: Krauser - Kwariani
Wrestling Heritage A-Z
The barrel chested Max Krauser was listed by Wrestling Heritage in our top ten overseas visitors of the 1930s. He was a Jew born into a family of eleven children in Stanislawow, Poland. An expert skier, rugby player, swimmer and skater it was in wrestling that he gained fame, wrestling throughout Europe, Australia and the United States.
A student at the University of Livov Max gained a Degree in Science. A fan of the wrestling he is said to have jumped into the ring, aged 22, challenging a German champion and beginning an internationally renowned wrestling career.
Arriving in Britain in 1934, with little wrestling experience. he was soon swapping holds with the likes of King Curtis, Francis St Clair Gregory, Anaconda and George Clark. And he beat them all! Many matches ended with his favourite move, the aeroplane spin, leading to billing as European Heavyweight champion.
This Polish Jew was a hard man who knew how to wrestle.
He wrestled in Britain intermittently between 1934 and 1938. Political developments in the 1930s made it unlikely that the Jewish heavyweight would return to Poland. Leaving Europe in 1938 he travelled to Australia, and whilst wrestling there the Second World War broke out. Max moved on to the United States where he enlisted in the army. Following retirement in the late 1940s Max and his wife set up their own business manufacturing luggage.
Billed as the statuesque negro giant from Georgetown, Guyana, his was a career full of contradictions.
We were told of his near invincibility overseas, gaining victory over the great Dara Singh in India, yet in Britain he would more often than not go down against his regular adversaries Steve Viedor, and Tibor Szakacs.
Trained as an amateur by the highly regarded Ken Richmond, adding to the skills he had already learned in Guyana. Tagged occasionally with Earl Maynard, and in Canada with Georges Gordienko.
Avid photographer Gordon managed deftly to adapt his style strictly according to his opponent, and further analysis of this can be found in Armchair Corner under Crowd Control of the Purest Kind.
See the entry for Ed Hamill
Mihalyi Kuti (Also known as Micha Nador)
A powerful heavyweight from Hungary Mihalyi Kuti made his way to Britain in the early 1960s for Dale Martin Promotions. He was an impressive site, standing 6'3” tall and weighing 17 stones. In his mid twenties he proved a formidable opponent for the likes of Mike Marino, Alan Garfield and The Zebra Kid amongst other top heavyweights of the time. On television he knocked out Dennis Mitchell on 17th September, 1960, a sign of his power. Four days later he benefited from the referees disqualification of Alan Garfield. Mihalyi returned to Britain in 1963 and 1964, again mostly working in the south but again with occasional jaunts north. Last seen in Britain in 1972 when appearances seem to have been mostly in the north.
Throughout his career Mihalyi Kuti worked mostly in Germany and Austria, as late as 1981 he was known outside of Britain as Micha Nador.
Mihalyi Kuti died in 2010.
Johnny Kwango (Also known as Bully Johnson, The South African Angel)
A big and popular name to the casual wrestling fan but paradoxically an undercarder through most of his career other than when facing his regular Londoner buddies, McManus and Pallo in main events. Billed as The King of the Head Butts from West Africa, he was famously lost for words when H.R.H. the Duke of Edinburgh asked him at the Royal show of 1963 where precisely he was from in Africa.
Favoured a jaw hold and wrestled unsmiliingly well into his sixties, a fact very well camouflaged from fans at the time. Featured with Jackie Pallo on the opening titles of ITV wrestling, as well as on the first Royal Show in 1963.
The alleged hardness of his famous bonce was sold strictly and exaggeratedly down the years by every single opponent as though this were one of the Great Commandments of the game, and this is discussed in detail in our Heritage feature Speciality Manoeuvres. Tagged with Linde Caulder, Johnny Kincaid and Clive Myers.
A musician and dancer, he was billed in the fifties and sixties as Black Kwango, and was the brother of Black Butcher Johnson. Ended his career as a referee, and made sure in that role that he never stole the limelight from the wrestlers even when nostalgic fans shouted compliments.
Born in Georgia, Tsarist Russia Kola Kwariani is reputed to have been a genuinely hard man who wrestled in Britain and around Europe in the 1930s before making a name for himself in the professional rings of North America. He played the part of the hired killer in the 1956 Stanley Kubrick film, The Killing. Born in 1903, died 1980.