SENSATIONAL AFFAIR IN ME l> BOURNE.
Not since the days of Whistler and Miller (says the "Age" of Monday last) has the public of Melbourne witnessed a wrestling contest so exciting as t'liat at Wirth's Circus on Saturday night between Clarence Weber and Biutt'an. Singh. Not at any time has a victor been greeted with such a unanimous burst of disapprobation as was bestowed upon Buttan, 'who, failing to throw by'fair an-J unfair methods the young atlilete wuo opposad him, choked him down and left liim to be carried helpless out of the arena. The Indian wrestlers Buttan Singh and Gunga Brahm have for .years dominated wrestling in Australia. They are undoubtedly capable men, particularly the former, who so far has not met anyone who has been able to give him any trouble. Hitherto Buttan has not resorted to any of the disreputable Oriental tricks that turned Saturday night*s eon test into a barbaric exhibition. For. a long time the Indian wrestlei-3 tiave been offering £10 to anyone who could oppose either of them for fifteen minutes in catch-as-catchcan style. For the athletic credit of a "white Australia" 'Clarence Weber took the challenge up. He is only 23 years of age, stands over 6 feet high, and is one of the most symmetiieally built men in .Australia. He is ah instructor of physical exercises and & wrestling enthusiast, who plays the game strictly in accordance with British rules, as applied to Lancashire, otherwise catch-as-catch-can style. His experience being limited, he relies largely upon his great strength and aciviiy for success. On the night of Saturday week he was beaten by Gunga Brahm, who secured a fall after eleven minules' play, when Weber tripped over a badly laid mac. Gunga wreslled fairly, but refused to meet Weber again, realising but for that accident a £10 note wou.d have had to be handed over. Buttan then took up the Melbourne athlete's challenge, and lound before he had gone far witli his contract that he was in for the hardest job of his life. At the outset the Indian began making ridiculous conditions about wrestling strictly within the limits of a small square of carpet laid loosely on top of the proper wrestLng mat. mis was laughed out of court by the spectators.
When the men got into holds Buttan began to work for a back body clasp by forcing Ms head under his opponent's right arm. Finding, however, that he had put his head in a clamp that closed on him like a steel trap, he wriggled out of the "tight place," sent Weber off his feet with a dextaxous twist of his arms and shoulders, and then began to turn him over. But Weber was "spread" to stay, and Buttan having failed with every regulation hold, put on an outrageous strangle hold from behind. Weber gurgled an unheeded protest, but there was no checking the utterance of the spectators, and the outburst of indignation that arose caused the Indian to relax his unfair grip. A great deal followed that was worse. While lying prone Weber's eyes, cheeks and nostrils suffered from the fingers of his antagonist, but once Buttan's inquisitive fingers were exploring the interior of his mouth, Weber closed his teeth hard on them. Nothing could shake Weber's resolution to hold out, and occasionally he got a clinch on his dusky foe that made him wriggle like an eel to keep ofl" his back. Most of the time, however, Weber was on the defensive. Finding that the referee's only reply to Weber's incessant protests was, "It's all ,in the game, unless you've agreed beforehand," uiittan again resorted to the strangle. Ai 10 minutes Weber, by a grand aggressive effort, turned and put Buttan on his back amid great cheering from the onlookers. Many of the spectators thought both the Indian's shoulders had touched, but the referee, who was standing up, did not see it, and in any ease the conditions were that Weber, not Buttan. had to be thrown. At this stage excited spectators rushed the ring, but were driven back by the police and ushers without interfering with the struggle in progress. At 12 minutes Buttan again put the strangle on from behind, and had it been his intention to show "the chairs" exactly what the brutal hold was, it could not have been clearer or more delibarate. With his right forearm across Weber's throat and his right hand locked in his left, he virtually garroted his young opponent senseless, and left the arena at once. The spectators rushed the ring, hooting the conqueror so vehemently that the band's attempt to play "God Save the King" was drowned, and Weber was carried off amidst tremendous cheering. THE SEQUEL. The •Age" of Tuesday says:—"The sequel to the sensational wrestling match at Wirth's Circus on Saturday night, when Clarence Weber was subjected to grossly unfair treatment at the hands of Buttan Singh,_jwas enacted in and out of the circus tent after the conclusion of the show. When Weber fell back helpless, overpowered by the merciless garrote applied to his throat, and the excited crowd rushed the rin«, a man o' warsmnn, whose feelings revolted at the unfairness of the Indian's methods, made a dart forward, intend- | ing, as he yelled, to ' deal it out to the I son of a gun. . He was supported by a I cowboy, who remarked, 'I'll be darned if I'll see any son of white folks strangled by a 'coon while I hey a weapon on me.' Button dex+srousjy avoidin* several badly directed swipe 5 of excited persons, got out of the ring and out of the tent, where the crowd following him made a wild rush for him. The Indian still in his abbreviated wrestling costume, fled up St. Kilda-road, with the shouting crowd hard on his heels around the Homeopathic Hospital and back to the city, where, hunted, trem- ' bling and scared, he secured the assistance of two constables who escorted him back between them to the circus where they guarded him while he dressed."
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BRUTAL WRESTLING., Auckland Star, Volume XXXV, Issue 272, 14 November 1904
BRUTAL WRESTLING. Auckland Star, Volume XXXV, Issue 272, 14 November 1904
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