First-ever WWE Greatest Royal Rumble wows 60,000 in Jeddah

John Cena, right, in action against Triple H at the show in Jeddah on Friday. (AFP)
Updated 29 April 2018
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First-ever WWE Greatest Royal Rumble wows 60,000 in Jeddah

  • In another landmark moment for Saudi Arabia, women were free to attend and enjoy the show
  • Four Saudi tryout WWE candidates also made an appearance, receiving a deafening reaction from the crowd as they took on Persian duo the Daivari brothers

JEDDAH: The first televised World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) event in the region was a huge success, with 60,000 delighted fans cheering their heroes at the King Abdullah Stadium on Friday night.

In another landmark moment for Saudi Arabia, women were free to attend and enjoy the show.

WWE pulled all the stops to ensure the success of its Greatest Royal Rumble, with all seven men’s titles on the line.

WWE legends The Undertaker, Rey Mysterio, Chris Jericho and Mark Henry were part of the loaded roster.

This was the first WWE event with a 50-man “Royal Rumble” match, rather than the traditional 30.

Four Saudi tryout WWE candidates also made an appearance, receiving a deafening reaction from the crowd as they took on Persian duo the Daivari brothers.

In the first bout of the night, John Cena defeated Triple H. Cedric Alexander then retained his cruiserweight title against Lucha sensation Kalisto, while Jeff Hardy held on to his US championship title against modern-day maharaja Jinder Mahal.

In the fatal four-way intercontinental championship ladder match, Seth Rollins came out on top against Samoa Joe, The Miz and Finn Balor.

Meanwhile, A.J. styles defended his WWE championship title against Shinsuke Nakamura, while the legendary Undertaker defeated Rusev in the Kingdom’s first casket match.

The battle between Brock Lesnar and Roman Reigns for the universal championship proved to be too much for the steel cage that was supposed to contain them, with Lesnar ending up the winner after the pair destroyed part of the structure.

The final match was the 50-man Royal Rumble match, which was down to Big Cass and Braun Strowman. Braun ran into Cass and knocked him to the floor to win the Greatest Royal Rumble match.


Rake news: Social media ablaze on Trump’s forest remarks for Finland

Updated 19 November 2018
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Rake news: Social media ablaze on Trump’s forest remarks for Finland

  • US President Donald Trump claimed the forest-covered nation prevents wildfires by raking its forest floors
  • Raking-related terms were among the most popular Twitter hashtags and Google searches in the Nordic nation

HELSINKI: Social media in Finland was ablaze with bemused comments on Monday after US President Donald Trump claimed the forest-covered nation prevents wildfires by raking its forest floors.
Speaking to reporters during the weekend while in California to see the impact of devastating forest fires, the US president again blamed forest management, but said Finland had the answer.
Trump cited the Finnish president as telling him Finns “spend a lot of time on raking and cleaning and doing things (in the forest), and they don’t have any problem.”
However the Nordic country’s president, Sauli Niinisto, told the Ilta-Sanomat newspaper on Sunday that he had no recollection of raking being mentioned when the pair met in Paris a week ago.
“I told him that Finland is a country covered in forests, but we also have a good warning system and network,” the president said.
Finnish social media users were quick to pile in, describing Trump’s comments as “rake news” and posting pictures of themselves brandishing the garden implement.
By late Sunday, raking-related terms were among the most popular Twitter hashtags and Google searches in the Nordic nation which is 72 percent covered by forests, predominantly of pine, birch and fir.
Meanwhile Yrjo Niskanen, head of emergency preparedness at Finland’s national forest center, said the US president may have been referring to the practice of removing branches and loose material left in the forest after logging.
But he pointed out that this is not done with a rake — and the wood is collected for energy production.
“I’ve never thought before that it could be removed because of the fire risk, that’s not mentioned in any forestry manuals. It’s taken away purely for business reasons,” Niskanen told the Iltalehti newspaper.