In an interview with The Independent, Triple H defended the decision to exclude women from Friday’s Greatest Royal Rumble event, which will take place in Saudi Arabia. The show has drawn some fire for its lack of a female presence, due to the political climate of the country. Some have said it is hypocritical for WWE to have a show there and still claim to promote a “women’s revolution.” Here are highlights:
On WWE holding the first women’s match in Abu Dhabi: It never ceases to amaze me that you come to any place in the world and walk down the street, and people know who you are. Theres nowhere you can go in the world without being recognised as a WWE superstar. You talk about the cultural shift in the world, and just a few months ago we were in Abu Dhabi and had the first ever match with women competing, with a crowd of women, men and little boys in the audience with tears in their eyes. The audience were chanting This is Hope that is cultural change.
On women not competing at the Greatest Royal Rumble: “I understand that people are questioning it, but you have to understand that every culture is different and just because you don’t agree with a certain aspect of it, it doesn’t mean it’s not a relevant culture. You can’t dictate to a country or a religion about how they handle things but, having said that, WWE is at the forefront of a women’s evolution in the world and what you can’t do is affect change anywhere by staying away from it.”
On hoping that women will be allowed to compete there later: “While, right now, women are not competing in the event, we have had discussions about that and we believe and hope that, in the next few years they will be. That is a significant cultural shift in Saudi Arabia. The country is in the middle of a shift in how it is dealing with that the position is changing, and rights are changing, as are the way women are handled and treated in society. We think that’s a great thing and we’re excited to be at the forefront of that change.”