The field is starting to fill out for the ROH Pure Title and Women's Title Tournaments.
First, ROH announced that Doug Williams and Jonathan Gresham are the first two participants in the ROH Pure Title Tournament. 16 men in total will be announced for the tournament, which begins on Apr. 10.
The tournament to crown the first Ring of Honor Pure Champion since 2006 begins at Pure Excellence on Friday, April 10 in Columbus and Saturday, April 11 in Pittsburgh. Sixteen entrants representing at least six countries will battle to put their names alongside Jay Lethal, Samoa Joe, AJ Styles, Nigel McGuinness, Bryan Danielson, and other ROH forefathers who fought by the Pure Rules. The rules gave a distinct flavor to each Pure Rules match: closed-fist punches were illegal and each competitor was allowed three rope breaks to stop submission holds and pinfalls during the match; after that, pinfalls and submission holds on or under the ropes would be legal.
The first entrant looks to become the first-ever two-time Pure Champion. After defeating Alex Shelley in a tournament final in 2004 to become just the second Pure Champion, Doug Williams held the Championship proudly. Williams has been synonymous with the Pure style and his impact on early ROH is still talked about to this day. Since departing ROH, Williams has maintained his status as one of the world’s best and most innovative stars, racking up Championships in New Japan, Pro Wrestling NOAH, Progress, and the TNA World Tag Team Championships with Nick Aldis. In 2018, Williams showed he was still one of the best in the world, mixing it up with The Briscoes and the Young Bucks on the Honor Re-United Tour!
Since Jonathan Gresham made his ROH debut in the 2011 Top Prospect Tournament, many fans noted that he was tailor made for the Pure Championship Division. “The Foundation” fits like a glove, as his ability to tie opponents up in submissions and quick pins leave them no choice but to seek rope breaks. And for one half of the World Tag Team Champions, the Pure Rules can take away sometimes the only method of escape for his foes: the rope break.
Gresham’s surgical precision has made him a threat in all divisions but his knowledge and application of the rules, for better or worse, have taken his career to a different level. A genius inside of the ring, Gresham, one of two men to compete in the last Pure Rules match at Best in the World 2019, is one of the odds-on favorites to add his name to the storied lineage of the Pure Championship.
Also announced is Kellyanne for the ROH Women's Title Tournament. She is the second participant announced for the tournament after Sumie Sakai. 16 women in total will be announced for the tournament, which begins on Apr. 24.
International star Kellyanne is the latest addition to the Ring of Honor roster and she has immediately set her sights on the ROH Women’s World Championship.
The native of Melbourne, Australia will compete in the 16-woman tournament to crown the new women’s champion. The tournament kicks off with eight first-round matches at Quest For Gold in Philadelphia on April 24.
Kellyanne may be a new face to many ROH fans, but she is certainly not a newcomer to pro wrestling. Despite being just 26, Kellyanne has been wrestling for more than a decade.
In addition to competing in Australia, Kellyanne has wrestled in Mexico, New Zealand, the UK and Canada, where she trained under Lance Storm. She also has wrestled for Shimmer in the U.S.
Combining hard-hitting offense with strong technical wrestling skills and agility, Kellyanne has won championships all over the world. Now, the no-nonsense competitor is seeking her crowning achievement: outlasting 15 other world class competitors to become the new ROH Women’s World Champion.