‘Lord White’ of Ugandan promotion SGW is wrestling’s top heel cover image

‘Lord White’ of Ugandan promotion SGW is wrestling’s top heel


Roman Reigns? Samoa Joe? These pro wrestling villains pale in comparison to the sport's newest top heel. One of the best things about professional wrestling is how it's part of a universal language. Every country in the world partakes in its pageantry, even when they don't have an actual ring. Enter the villain 'Lord White' of the Ugandan promotion Soft Ground Wrestling. The promotion went viral this weekend after releasing a video on social media that now has over four million views.

What is the excitement over? In the video, the caucasian British heel Lord White berates his Ugandan audience with a promo right out of Mid-South Wrestling in the early 80s. Channeling his best uppity, white coloniser voice, Lord White chastises and leads the crowd to jeers, chest pounding, and a hotter atmosphere than most weekly WWE shows.

"A lot of countries fight for independence... But not Uganda!" Lord White sneers to the SGW crowd. "We gave it back to you because we didn't want it anymore!" Lord White preens and prances in front a crowd fervently yelling "You Suck!"

There's heel work, and then there's a guy saying "we colonized your pro wrestling scene." Fans across the globe have taken notice, as well as one of the best wrestlers in the world.

SGW, Lord White, and Ugandan pro wrestling

<em>(Photo by Badru Katumba / AFP</em>)
(Photo by Badru Katumba / AFP)

The village of Mukano, outside the capital of Uganda, is home of SGW and its literal grass roots wrestling promotion. Unable to afford a wrestling ring--seemingly the most central aspect of a wrestling promotion--the performers of Soft Ground Wrestling get by on a love for the sport. With around five thousand subscribers on YouTube, SGW posts a number of videos and matches that don't look too different than some western indie promotions.

Performers such as One Man Army, Jordan Loverine, and Mr. Handsome perform moves in a way not unlike kids in a backyard, figuring it out as they go. If you love pro wrestling then it's hard not to respect and admire the act of just going out there and doing it. I think that's why SGW putting out the now-infamous clip of Lord White is so fantastic.

It's completely an example of pro wrestling developing in a bubble of its own culture. The internet uproariously responded to Lorde White claiming domain over the 200 square feet of soft earth in Uganda, as it speaks a universal language. Even here, in a squared circle made of the literal ground, SGW found a way to make connections to viewers who will never step foot in Africa.

Enter, bruv

Enter Will Ospreay, perhaps the most important wrestler in the world. The AEW high-flyer helped elevate SGW and the Lord White promo video even higher, sharing his thoughts on what professional wrestling can stand for in the world.

"I love how wrestling can change lives and inspire people," Will said in a tweet early today. He's backed up this promotion even further, donating two thousand dollars to SGW's attempts at financing and building an actual wrestling ring. It's an aspiration that resonates with wrestling fans from all walks of life.

"I have over 200 boys and girls, some of them are orphans," says SGW promoter Bumba Daniel said on a post on Twitter. "I am using wrestling to change and make their lives better." Personally, I want to see Lord White get his, so here's hoping SGW finds growth equal to its heart and love for wrestling.

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