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Clips (3)

  1. Part one of two from this full length episode.

  2. Part two of two from this full length episode.

  3. The credits from this episode.


This episode of the legendary pro-wrestling show screened on 29 July 1980. Ernie Leonard and Steve Rickard compere the action at Canterbury Court Stadium. In the first match up Aussie grappler Larry O'Day teams up with local Merv Fortune to take on Kid Hardie and young Ricky Rickard. An excerpt features Brute Miller and Sweet William (later famous as The Bushwackers) against Lu Leota and Samoan Joe; while Jack Claybourne and Ron Miller round out the bill. Billy T James makes an appearance and comments on the authenticity of the in-the-ring proceedings.


A backgrounder by Shanan Gough and Adam Simpson 03.02.2010

Professional wrestling first appeared on New Zealand television as Big Time Wrestling in 1973. The show was filmed in Australia by American promoter James E. Barnett. Steve Rickard often co-promoted with Barnett and as a result ...

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Credits (4)

 John Lye
 Michael Scott
 Steve Rickard

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Comments (7)

 Peter Messano

Peter Messano

I really like On the Mat. It was a great show and Steve Rickard was a great wrestler.

 Paul Ward

Paul Ward | website

@BLACK: the two episodes of On the Mat that are on NZ On Screen are the only two episodes remaining in TVNZ's archive. If viewers have more episodes (eg. on VHS) and they were in OK condition we'd happily look to rights clear them and get them up onsite. Get in touch! Otherwise, enjoy!
@Ray and Val: we have a 1968 episode of Country Touch presented by Tex Morton:



Excellent. Please put on more of ON THE MAT.



Michael Scott was my uncle and passed away last Monday.Was to young to have ever seen this show when it was on air but I am so happy I can watch some of it now and see what he was apart of all those years ago.



there arent enough presenters wearing sensible tracksuits on television these days

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I think I can answer a question that's asked by thousands of armchair viewers: its all for real