German-Russian WWE hopeful Ilya Dragunov has to involuntarily resign the European NXT UK title.
Meanwhile, his predecessor appears on international TV as Gunther and holds the tradition-rich Intercontinental title. On his way to a similar career in WWE, Ilya Dragunov has now suffered a setback.
The German-Russian wrestler, who has reigned as champion in the European squad NXT UK so far, has had to relinquish his title at the recent TV tapings due to injury, with the 28-year-old addressing the fans with a splinted foot and laying down his belt.
Tyler Bate succeeds Ilya Dragunov as NXT UK Champion in WWE
At the tapings, a new champion was then crowned in an eight-man tournament, with Tyler Bate, who was already the first NXT UK Champion, victorious.
Bate’s replacements Pete Dunne (Butch) and WALTER (Gunther) have since been promoted to the main show SmackDown, Dragunov previously ending WALTER’s 870-day reign and engaging in several spectacular David vs. Goliath matches with the Austrian – with whom he has a long history.
Dragunov is the second German-speaking WWE wrestler to involuntarily lose a title at NXT UK within a short period of time: Recently, Swiss Oliver Carter had to relinquish his tag team title because partner Ashton Smith was injured. These titles are now held by the US talents Josh Briggs and Brooks Jensen.