WWE: Charlotte on WWE's women's revolution

Charlotte, whose father is the legendary Ric Flair, did not consider wrestling until she was 25.
Charlotte, whose father is the legendary Ric Flair, did not consider wrestling until she was 25.PHOTO: WWE
WWE superstar Charlotte, who's the daughter of legendary wrestler Ric Flair, fielding questions from reporters in Manila, Philippines on Sept 9, 2016.
WWE superstar Charlotte, who's the daughter of legendary wrestler Ric Flair, fielding questions from reporters in Manila, Philippines on Sept 9, 2016.PHOTO: FABIUS CHEN

WWE Raw Women's champion Charlotte is wrestling royalty. As the 30-year-old daughter of the legendary Ric Flair, the two-time women's champion grew up playing sports such as volleyball and was a gymnast.

In the Philippines recently when WWE made a stop on Sept 9 in Manila for its only show in South-east Asia in 2016, Charlotte, whose real name is Ashley Elizabeth Fliehr, told a packed press conference: "My dad was home a lot when I was growing up. He was already in his late 40s and early 50s and past the peak of his career.

"He was not a dad who was never home. My dad went to every volleyball game and was there for my college sports."

Stepping into the squared circle never crossed her mind until she was 25, an age where most people would have embarked on their careers.

"It was my little brother who encouraged me. I didn't know anything about wrestling.

"I grew up watching it but I never wanted to be a wrestler (laughs). (Being the daughter of Ric Flair) has its pros and cons and it makes me work that much harder."

Charlotte has now become part of the women's revolution that has swept WWE.

The revolution occurred when fans - fed up of short five-minute women's matches - demanded more air time for female wrestlers on television.

Charlotte recalled: "When we were in NXT - when it was known as FCW (WWE's developmental territory) - we didn't know we were going to change things or start a revolution.

"It was just a group of girls who wanted to work hard. We did it together.

"That's not to say the girls on the main roster before us weren't working just as hard. It just happened to be the right time and the fans were wanting it."

On female wrestlers being sometimes dismissed as purely eye candy, Charlotte replied: "I have a very athletic background so to be able to contribute and say that not only am I a diva, I am an athlete...I think that's the biggest thing to take away. The women wrestlers are athletes and not just pretty faces."

With fame, comes responsibility.

Charlotte, along with other female wrestlers including Sasha Banks, Becky Lynch and Bayley, are now role models for girls worldwide.

"We just know we want to be treated as equals, like the boys, and to know that the fans are getting behind women's wrestling and that they want more for us.

"Knowing that we can be role models for little girls who root for us, that's what keeps us going every day."

Charlotte, who plays a heel (what is actually a villain) on television, recently "disowned" her father, Flair, on television.

"That particular night, he got very emotional in the ring. To everyone at home watching, he looked like he was crying but I was so close to him, they were happy tears.

"I've been able to adapt to whatever they've (WWE) given me, because at the end of the day, it's entertainment. That's the beauty of what we do.

"So many people who watch it, always ask if it is for real. Did Charlotte really disown her dad?

"That's when you know you're doing something right, when you get to be invested in the character. It's not necessarily the wrestling but the entertainment of the character.

"I really think I'm the queen (laughs). That's the best part about it."

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