N: Nandor - N'Boa
Wrestling Heritage A-Z
Lajko NandorJohn Naylor (Also known as Golden Ace)
Hungarian light heavyweight visited during the winter of 1951-2, meeting the likes of Tony Mancelli, Milo Popocpolous, light heavyweight champion Sonny Wallis and inevitably losing to Bert Assiratti.
The 1960s witchdoctor wrestler was covered head to toe in a one-piece outfit and green mask to cover his face. The outfit was for good reason. Nawamba's nationality was not all it seemed. The outfit was worn by a number of wrestlers working for Joint Promotions, with links closer to Newark, Northampton or Nottingham. We suspect his studying of voodoo was also something of an exaggeration.
Standing on the top rope facing the audience, a backwards summersault on to his astonished opponent and the inevitable result was a pinfall for John Naylor. Such moves were to become almost commonplace thirty years later, but in the early 1970s they helped make “The Golden Ace” John Naylor one of the new breed of wrestling stars.
Wigan’s John Naylor brought a breath of fresh air to the northern wrestling scene when he appeared in the early 1970s. Here was someone with skill, style, speed, and a healthy amount of aggression. The speed and agility should not disguise just how the hardness of John Naylor. Wrestler Tony Francis recalls, "Many Moons ago I was billed to wrestle Ray Steele on the pier at Morecambe. When I arrived at the venue I felt quite ill, and even more so when I saw the poster; Ray was never known for his gentleness! Anyway I had to cry off, and as it was too late to get a substitute it was down to Steve Fury to appear twice. Steve did his best, took the bout to round five, and left the ring absolutely exhausted. Now,the plot thickens. Steves'original opponent,The Little Prince, had also cried off, but this time a sub had been found....John Naylor!! Well,if Steve thought his match with Ray was hard, John took him to a different plane. Strangely enough,after a large whisky in the bar I was able to enjoy both bouts in comfort. I don't think Steve Fury has ever forgiven me! "
Having learnt the business at Riley’s gym he could certainly wrestle, and his early professional experiences came on weekend visits to France. Along with contemporaries Steve Wright, Dynamite Kid and Mark Rocco, John Naylor played just as significant part in changing the style of 1970s wrestling, but often seems one of the forgotten men of the new breed.
Red Naylor (Also known as Fireball Naylor)
A busy Welterweight on the north and midlands independent circuit in the first half of the 1960s; Fred Naylor was a frequent opponent of Kevin Conneely, Shem Singh, Colin McDonald,Johnny Saint. On the nights he wasn't wrestling Red could be found refereeing for independent promoters. A referee of some merit according to Heritage member, Duncan, who told us he was "A good ref. though who knew when to turn his back!" Barbara Sandwell told us, "I worked with him at Imperial Chemical Industries, Thornton Cleveleys in Lancashire. One morning shift we worked together and imagine my surprise when that evening he wrestled on Dominic Pye's bill at Blackpool Central Club."
N’boa the Snakeman (Also known as The Headhunter)
Said to be from darkest Africa N'Boa the Snakeman was Bob Elandon from Leopoldville in the Belgian Congo, a Belgian colony in central Africa, now the Democratic Republic of Congo. He toured Britain several times in the sixties, initially billed as Elandon the Headhunter and later N’B oa the Snakeman. What a sight he was as he brought with him to the ring a six-foot python, a gimmick subsequently copied by others. N’Boa walked slowly to the ring with the python wrapped around his shoulders, causing gasps from the audience as they moved quickly a few feet backwards. With hindsight we can see that there was no danger to anyone, but this was a very effective and original gimmick at the time.
Once he had entered the ring N'Boa the Snakeman showed himself to be a colourful bare-footed and barely-toothed light-heavyweight baddie from wrestling’s golden era, who topped the Royal Albert Hall bill when he faced Steve Viedor.