Charlie Morgan announces her retirement at Wrestle Queendom 2

RISE 13 – LEGENDARY was the largest card of women’s wrestling talent ever assembled for a show. 59 women stepped in the ring in a wrestling or managerial role, with two more on commentary. Among the matches, that night was a 30-woman RISE of the Contender battle royal for a future shot at the Phoenix of RISE Championship. The third entry in that match was making her North American debut: Fearless Charlie Morgan.

Charlie Morgan was a big get for RISE and SHIMMER that weekend. Fans of both promotions had been clamoring to have her brought over, and when we saw her, we were thrilled. She was a surprise for us on Friday, and her debut SHIMMER weekend looked bright. She beat Mercedes Martinez on SHIMMER 110, lost to Kimber Lee on SHIMMER 111, and teamed with Kris Wolf against Blue Nation (Charli Evans & Jessica Troy) on SHIMMER 112. I was there for it all and even got a signed picture because I knew it might be a while before I saw her again.

I didn’t realize at the time, however, that I had watched Charlie Morgan’s final four matches. Her North American debut would, unfortunately, become her retirement, as she injured her ankle during the tag match with Kris Wolf and Blue Nation. It was just a simple dive to the outside onto Blue Nation, but something happened in her ankle and she was carried out of the match. Kris continued on and won the match, but people were worried for Charlie. We had already seen Mercedes Martinez injured the day before and Delilah Doom injured on Friday. Nobody expected this to be more than a temporary sidelining of Charlie Morgan. She was the Ace of EVE. She’d be back and better than ever.

At the time I’m writing this, Charlie Morgan announced her retirement some 6 hours ago at Wrestle Queendom II. She came out her ankle still in a boot and said the injury was worse than expected. Tearfully, she announced that due to the injury she was retiring and looking toward a life after wrestling. At 27 years old, there’s plenty of time for a life after wrestling, but it hurts to see a promising young career cut short all the same.

Charlie Morgan was trained by Sweet Saraya Knight at the World Association of Wrestling Academy. She made her in-ring debut as part of an eight-woman tag team match for WAW, working under the name Penelope. She worked the first five years of her career for WAW, Bellatrix, and other British indies before branching out to Europe at large. She collected titles along the way, including the Bellatrix British Women’s Title, the RQW European Women’s Title, and the DOA UK Sirens Title.

It wasn’t until she broke away from Bellatrix and changed her name to Charlie Morgan that she started to blow up as a major player in the British and European scene. She made her EVE debut at Babes with the Power, losing to Kay Lee Ray in the opening round of the EVE Championship tournament. But Charlie Morgan had found her new home.

At Dangerous Women, not only did Charlie Morgan qualify for the SHE-1 tournament, she made waves by coming out publicly in a wrestling ring, something no wrestler before her had ever done.

From there Charlie Morgan became almost synonymous with EVE. She embodies their aesthetic and their punk feminist ideals. It was no surprise, then, that she won the SHE-1 and became the first ever Ace of EVE. Nobody could have borne that banner more proudly or more appropriately.

At Wrestle Queendom last year, Charlie Morgan challenged Sammii Jayne for the EVE Title. Jayne had won the title in the tournament that Morgan had made her debut in, and fans were ready for a new babyface champion. To nobody’s surprise but everybody’s delight, Charlie Morgan beat Sammii Jayne in an absolutely killer match to become the new champion.

She held the title for 190 days, successfully defending it three times. At the SHE-1 final, she lost the title to Nina Samuels in a three-way match with Kay Lee Ray. She lost her rematch at SHEvivor Series, and her post-match promo suggested a new direction. She didn’t know what else she had to give, and her final matches in EVE show no clear direction for her other than trying to find herself post-championship.

At this time she was also making appearances for NXT UK. Nobody but she and EVE know the exact details of her contract status with WWE, but she had a few matches there. NXT UK never showcased her true talents, though. With her retirement, the NXT UK Women’s division will be poorer for her absence from here on out.

I’m happy to have been able to watch Charlie Morgan’s North American debut in person. I’m delighted that I got to meet her and that she seemed pleased that I knew how the chant went (it goes “Charlie, Charlie, Charlie fuckin’ Morgan”). I’m gutted that I was there for her last match ever. You never want to see someone hurt, much less hurt to the point they have to retire.

Charlie finished her retirement promo in the usual fashion, showing why she wasn’t just the Ace of EVE, but the face of EVE. She called upon the EVE faithful one last time to “Be brave, be fearless, and most importantly be YOU!”