WWE’s Greatest Royal Rumble Will Feature A 15 Minute “Prayer Break”

The Greatest Royal Rumble is set to make WWE history in some ways. The event is taking place live from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on Friday, April 26th at noon eastern time. The GRR is WWE’s largest overseas event, eclipsing the scale of the 1992 SummerSlam at Wembley Stadium in London, UK. There is controversy surrounding the Saudis’ strict religious laws which forbid female talent from competing at the event. The country is one of the more conservative Muslim countries in the world. The nation follows a strict “Wahhabist” interpretation of  Sunni Islam. This is a fundamentalist movement that adheres to strict interpretations of the holy Koran. A part of this and a part of almost all Muslim nations are the calls to prayer that take place multiple times every day. One of these is the “Isha” prayer which occurs at night.

The Greatest Royal Rumble takes place at night, and as such WWE decided to make a break in the show for the prayer.

The Greatest Royal Rumble Isn’t Perfect But It Is A Start

As far as I know, this is the first time there has been a “prayer break” at a WWE event. WWE Live Events (or House Shows) include intermissions and often there are matches considered “bathroom breaks.” Despite the controversy surrounding this event, that WWE is taking time out to allow the religiously devout to pray is an integral part of WWE becoming a global brand.

Many people scoff at WWE reaching out to these religiously strict countries, but the best way to change minds is with direct engagement. You don’t help people grow and involve by isolating them and shunning. By showing that not all Western forms of entertainment are evil, WWE is allowing everyday Saudis a chance to see the outside world. For that alone, they should be applauded. This event doesn’t excuse or erase the Kingdom’s troublesome human right’s record though. I hope WWE will change their deal with the Saudis if they don’t see any further cultural reforms.

Will you watch The Greatest Royal Rumble? Let us know in the comments below.

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