WWE Superstar Seth Rollins gestures to the crowd as he enters the ring. PHOTO: WWE.com

WWE: WrestleMania to go ahead behind closed doors, SA tour in doubt

The WWE’s flagship pay-per-view will take place with no fans in attendance for the first time ever on 5 April 2020.


WWE Superstar Seth Rollins gestures to the crowd as he enters the ring. PHOTO: WWE.com

The WWE will stage Wrestlemania 36 behind closed doors at their Performance Centre in Florida with all future live shows in doubt, including their tour to South Africa, due to the coronavirus outbreak.

WWE South African tour in doubt

WWE had been set to return to South Africa for an exhibition tour in late April. The events on were scheduled to take place on 29 April at Grand Arena Grandwest in Cape Town; 30 April at Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban; and 1 and 2 May at Ticketpro Dome in Johannesburg.

Seth Rollins, Becky Lynch, Charlotte Flair, Bobby Lashley, The O.C., Ricochet and Aleister Black had all been due to make the trip but the COVID-19 outbreak may break the hearts of South Africa’s WWE fans.

The WWE have held their weekly shows Smackdown Live and Monday Night Raw, usually live events, at the Performance Centre with no fans and only limited support staff in attendance. The WWE have declared that no performers will be forced to compete or appear on television.

Travel bans are expected to effect the WWE’s drive to expand the brand beyond the United States, and the South African trip is likely to be postponed if not cancelled outright.

WrestleMania 36 was scheduled to take place at the Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida, USA.

“In coordination with local partners and government officials, WrestleMania and all related events in Tampa Bay will not take place. 

“However, WrestleMania will still stream live on Sunday, 5 April at 7 pm ET (01:00 6 April SAST) on WWE Network and be available on pay-per-view. Only essential personnel will be on the closed set at WWE’s training facility in Orlando, Florida to produce WrestleMania,” a statement from the WWE reads.

The WrestleMania show will be broadcast live on the WWE Channel on DSTV (Channel 138) and can be streamed by subscribers through the DSTV Now app.

Wrestlemania 36 will see Brock Lesnar defend the WWE Championship against Drew McIntyre after the ‘Scottish Psycopath’ won the Rumble eliminating the Champion in the progress. On the Smackdown brand Goldberg is scheduled to make his first defence of the Universal Championship against Roman Reigns. 

Women’s Royal Rumble winner Charlotte Flair is eager to add to her title collection when she faces NXT Women’s Champion Rhea Ripley.

Becky Lynch defends the Raw Women’s Championship which she has held since Wrestlemania 35 against MMA maven Shayna Baszler.

In non-title action John Cena faces the Fiend and the Undertaker returns to battle AJ Styles.

All Wrestlemania 36 matches are subject to changes.