Kay Lee Ray defeated Toni Storm to become the new NXT UK Women’s Champion at NXT UK TakeOver: Cardiff. Ray is the third wrestler to claim the title, following Storm and the inaugural champion Rhea Ripley.
Storm initially won the title at the previous NXT UK TakeOver event in Blackpool. She dethroned Rhea Ripley in the second of three matches for the title. Storm prevailed again in a rematch with Ripley on NXT UK TV shortly after TakeOver: Phoenix. Her title reign saw her defend the belt against Jinny and Nina Samuels on NXT UK, Bianca Belair and Nikki Cross at Worlds Collide, and against Viper at Insane Championship Wrestling, just weeks after Ray lost the ICW Women’s Championship to Kasey Owens in a triple threat with Owens and Aivil.
Ray first appeared at NXT UK in the crowd at TakeOver: Blackpool, along with fellow signee Jazzy Gabert. She made her debut for NXT UK in February, where she defeated Candy Floss and briefly feuded with fellow Scot Isla Dawn. Ray earned her title shot by defeating eleven other wrestlers in a battle royal, last eliminating Xia Brookside to claim the number one contendership.
Storm and Ray’s feud took on a bitter, personal dimension in recent weeks as Ray blamed Storm drove away her father, who abandoned her family as a young child. Despite a strong opening onslaught from Storm, Ray ultimately put her rival way with a pair of Gory Specials, one on the ropes and one in the middle of the ring.
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