Kairi Sane is one of the most impressive and entertaining competitors in WWE’s Mae Young Classic. And given the high caliber of wrestlers in the tournament, that’s no small feat.

Sane’s elbow drop cannot be matched.

sane elbow drop

Here are five fast facts about WWE’s new “Pirate Princess.”

5. She’s an avid yachter

kairi hojo facts

WWE is no stranger to signing athletes from a wide array of sporting backgrounds, but Kairi Sane comes from a particularly unique sport: yachting.

Throughout her collegiate career, Sane competed in numerous intercollegiate, national, and world yachting competitions, and she even dreamed of making it to the Olympics. While that didn’t happen, Sane carried her passion for yachting into her pro wrestling career – it’s where she got the inspiration for her pirate attire.

4. She’s only been wrestling since 2012

Kairi Sane was the most hyped WWE signee since Asuka, and for good reason. But for all her accolades, can you believe she’s only been wrestling since 2012?

Sane began her training with Japanese promotion Stardom in 2011. She passed her first pro test in November of that year and debuted the following January. The fact that she’s made it to WWE in such a short amount of time is truly astounding. By comparison, it took Asuka, who started wrestling in 2004, more than 10 years to gain WWE’s attention. Of course, there’s no doubt that Asuka broke down doors for Sane, but Sane’s quick rise to prominence speaks to her preternatural ability inside the squared circle.

3. She was discovered while acting in a play… as a pro wrestler

Perhaps it was destiny that Kairi Sane found her way to pro wrestling. It certainly seems so given the unusual circumstances of which she was discovered.

After graduating from Hosei University, Sane pursued a career in acting, which included theater work. One of the roles she undertook required her to portray a pro wrestling villain, and Fuka, the general manager of Stardom, just so happened to see Sane’s performance. Fuka was so impressed that she invited Sane to one of Stardom’s shows, and the rest is history.

2. She wrestled on Lucha Underground

While many American fans are getting their first taste of Sane on the Mae Young Classic, her first appearance for an American promotion was actually on Lucha Underground.

In February 2016, Sane wrestled under the name “Doku” as a member of the mysterious Black Lotus Triad and was the first to face renowned luchador Pentagon Dark (a.k.a. Pentagon Jr.) in a gauntlet match. While Pentagon Dark ultimately defeated Doku, her showing was impressive – you have to see her patented elbow drop to believe it.

1. Shinsuke Nakamura was instrumental in her signing

WWE reportedly first offered Sane a contract in October 2016. However, while Sane was interested in signing with WWE, she worried that she wouldn’t pass the company’s strict physical exam due to a history of concussions. Thankfully, Shinsuke Nakamura convinced Sane that she’d be a perfect fit for WWE, and she officially signed a three-year deal with the company in March 2017.

What do you think of Kairi Sane? Are you excited to see how she does in the Mae Young Classic and beyond? Share your thoughts and comments below!

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