Isla Dawn Praises Influence of Nikki Cross & Killian Dain [Exclusive]

Isla Dawn praises Nikki Cross

NXT UK exploded back onto our screens last month after several months of lying dormant – and one Superstar who’s looking to make the most of the brand resurgence is WWE‘s youngest Scottish Superstar – Isla Dawn!

Isla Dawn may be plying her trade on NXT UK, but she has an NXT Superstar and a SmackDown Superstar to thank for much of her progress – in Killian Dain and Nikki Cross – as she told Inside The Ropes‘ own Kenny McIntosh.

Nikki’s such an inspiration for me because she’s been there through so much of my career. She was my first match ever. In fact, I think my first ten matches were all with Nikki. So then seeing her from the time I started to wrestle into everything she’s achieved and from that time frame of me meeting her, watching her ascend to such a high level, you cannot help but be inspired.”

Nikki Cross‘ husband, Killian Dain, actually trained Isla Dawn – but her route to the squared circle wasn’t as conventional as most.

“Yeah, it wasn’t the usual route. I studied acting and was then pursuing a career to be an actor and ended up getting cast in a play about professional wrestling.

“Now, I used to watch it when I was younger and I was a fan. I’d get to go and see live events when I was about 12 years old. So I had a base knowledge of wrestling and I knew who wrestlers were and knew certain things about the industry. But we got Killian to come in and give us the insight into how it worksso we could portray the characters authentically rather than just like people that come in and try to just pretend they’re in WWE. The play was all about independent female wrestlers and it was funny because my part was a former WWE star who came in and she was the diva who didn’t bump or take any moves. So I never actually got to do of the physical training aspect of it. All the other girls got to learn how to do moves and get involved, whereas I just kind of like went along and watched it all.”

WWE’s youngest Scottish Superstar goes on to reveal how Dain encouraged her to give it a go, and how he and Cross both helped her along the way.

“Fortunately, through that I developed a really good friendship with Killian and he knew I’d danced and I’d done kickboxing. He also knew I really enjoyed wrestling and I had been a fan. So he kept encouraging me to go. I’d always think to myself that I wanted to do it but I didn’t know what it would be like. And I was a bit nervous and apprehensive about it and he’d say, “Just try it and see if you like it.” It did take a little while with all of his encouragement and Nikki Cross would come and see other shows that I was doing, and other plays, and they would always say, “You’d be really good, come try, come try.” So they did eventually convince me to go – and ever since that first training session, I’ve been in love with it.”

Thanks to Isla Dawn for taking time out to speak to us. You can read the full interview here.

You can watch Isla Dawn every week on NXT UK, which is available for viewers in the UK & Ireland via BT Sport and globally via the WWE Network.