Match Rules

Match Rules || Match Types || Live Show Rules



PUNCHING: Unlike other promotions, a closed-fist is permitted but a referee may declare punching excessive and regulate as his or her judgment sees fit. It is the official’s responsibility to make sure that a contest remains focused on wrestling and not boxing.  

KICKING: Unlike other promotions which require that kicks may only be executed with the flat part of the foot, WAW has no such rule. As with punching, it is the official’s responsibility to make sure that a contest remains focused on wrestling and not kicking.  

LOW BLOW: Refers to actually striking the crotch and is a disqualifiable offense.  

TOP ROPE: Some wrestling promotions have a rule in which a wrestler may not throw another wrestler over the top rope. WAW has no such rule.  

AERIAL MANEUVERS: Some wrestling promotions have a rule in which a wrestler cannot jump off the top rope onto a prone opponent. WAW has no such rule.  

HOLDING APPAREL: Some wrestling promotions have a rule in which a wrestler cannot pull an opponent's apparel while covering for a pin or any other reason. In WAW, a referee may decide not to count a pin or issue a five-count to break a hold should clothing be used for leverage, but it is not a disqualifiable offense. However, refusing to break a hole after a five-count is in fact a disqualifiable offense.  

ROPE BREAKS: During a submission hold or pin, if either wrestler is in contact with the ropes, all contact between the wrestlers must be broken before the count of five in the case of submissions, and for pins, the pin will not be counted. Unlike other promotions, WAW does not regard being under the ropes as a rope break. Physical contact must be made.  

NO MAN’S LAND: A rule unique to WAW, a referee in WAW has a jurisdiction within the ring only. A WAW official, notwithstanding the ten-count being issued to bring wrestlers back into the ring where the official can referee the contest, cannot rule any action that takes place outside of the ring. It is not possible in a normal contest to be disqualified for any and all actions taking place outside the ring.  

FAIR USE OF FOREIGN OBJECTS: Another rule unique to WAW is the “Foreign Object Fair-Use” ruling that dictates certain circumstances in which foreign objects can be used legally. In simple terms, a wrestler may not strike another wrestler with a weapon; however, a wrestler may strike a weapon with a wrestler. For example, while hitting a wrestler with a steel chair would result in a disqualification, hitting a steel chair with a wrestler would not be. A weapon may be placed somewhere in the ring and then be used as a target by which a wrestler slams another wrestler on it in some way. It is up to the referee to determine if any use of a weapon falls under “fair use,” however it is the referee’s job to make a reasonable attempt to discourage use of weapons in a regular contest. The referee is therefore allowed to physically remove weapons from wrestlers or remove the weapons from the ring. It is not, however, in the referee’s best interest to put his or herself in harm’s way. It should be noted that this rule was not instituted to allow use of weapons, but to prevent the disqualification of wrestlers who may unknowingly throw an opponent to a weapon placed by another person.  


A match can be won by pinfall, submission, count-out, disqualification, failure to answer a ten count, or a match may be declared “no-contest.”  

PINFALL: A wrestler must pin both his or her opponent's shoulders against the mat while the referee slaps the mat three times.  

SUBMISSION: To win by submission, the wrestler must make his opponent give up, usually, but not necessarily, by putting him in a submission hold (i.e. leg-lock, arm-lock, etc.). A submission is awarded if the victim of a hold indicates submission by tapping his or her hand on the mat, on his or herself, or on the aggressor. Should he or she be unable to tap out, a verbal expression of quitting may be permitted.  

TECHNICAL KNOCKOUT: Passing out in a submission hold constitutes a loss by technical knockout. To determine if a wrestler has passed out, the referee will usually pick up and drop his or her hand. If it drops three consecutive times without the wrestler having the strength to stop it from falling, the wrestler is considered to have passed out.  

COUNT OUT: Happens when a wrestler is out of the ring long enough for the referee to count to 10. If both wrestlers are outside the ring, the count is reset if either one re-enters and then re-exits the ring. If both wrestlers are counted out, the result is a draw. A referee can declare a count out without counting to ten should a wrestler no longer be visible to the official.  

KNOCKOUT (NON-TECHNICAL) occurs if a wrestler is lying on the mat and not moving. The referee may issue a ten count. To break the count, the wrestler to whom the count is made must be able to stand on both feet. The count may also be broken by another wrestler attacking the wrestler to whom the count it made, though attacking during such a time is illegal and will be answered with a warning and, should the attacks continue, may be answered with a disqualification. A count may also occur in the event of two or more wrestlers being down at once. If neither wrestler reaches his or her feet, it is considered a draw.  

DISQUALIFICATION: A wrestler may be disqualified and thereby lose a contest by performing any illegal holds or maneuvers, refusing to break a hold when an opponent is in the ropes, choking or biting an opponent, use of any move considered by an official to be of the “pile driver” variety, use of a foreign object, outside interference, refusal to make attempts at winning through conventional means, and intentionally physically contacting the official.  


ILLEGAL HOLDS: WAW has a strict policy regarding the use of any hold that constitutes a “pile driver.” Choking, biting, eye-gouging, spitting, clawing, blatant attacks to the groin, and holds that constitute sexual misconduct are not permitted. It is up to a referee’s discretion to determine where these holds apply.  

TOP TURNBUCKLE: Unlike other wrestling promotions, there are no time limits in WAW for climbing the turnbuckles, nor can a wrestler be disqualified for executing aerial maneuvers.  

EXCESSIVE STRIKING: A wrestler may be disqualified for excessive use of punches and kicks. The offending wrestler must first be warned and, should the wrestler ignore warnings by the official, a disqualification may follow.  

REFUSING TO BREAK A HOLD: When the aggressor applies a hold of any kind and the victim contacts a rope, the referee will issue a five-count. Should the aggressor refuse to break the hold, a disqualification may be issued. The same is true when an illegal hold such as a choke is applied, though in that case, the referee may make the decision to issue a disqualification without a count, especially in cases where the aggressor has already been warned. Additionally, breaking a ten-count by a referee for a wrestler who is downed and not moving for a knockout decision is illegal, however a warning must precede a disqualification.  

OUTSIDE INTERFERENCE: Outside interference is constituted when anyone not sanctioned in a contest gets physically involved in a contest, favoring any particular competitor. The wrestler to whom the attack favors will be disqualified in the event of outside interference. Conversely, passive-aggressive interference in which no one is attacked but the person interfering is doing other things to adversely affect the match may result in the official barring the interfering party from ringside. Examples of passive-aggressive interference include but are not limited to pulling the ropes away from a wrestler in a hold, aiding a wrestler by adding leverage to a hold, distracting the referee, or providing foreign objects to wrestlers. A wrestler cannot be disqualified for passive-aggressive interference.  

USE OF FOREIGN OBJECTS: Use of foreign objects is a disqualifiable offense and taken very seriously. No warnings will be issued.  

LOW-BLOW: Any direct attack to the groin can result in a disqualification.  

CONTACTING THE REFEREE: Should a wrestler physically contact a referee in a purposeful manner, the referee may disqualify the offending wrestler without warning. In most cases where the contact is nonviolent or where purposeful intent cannot be determined, the referee will issue a warning or even disregard the contact as being accidental. In the event the referee is attacked and is unaware of who attacked him or her or if the referee cannot determine if the attack was intentional, no action can be taken.  

WITNESS DETERMINATION: A referee may only call what he or she sees and cannot make decisions without actually witnessing any given event. No amount of circumstantial evidence short of a wrestler confessing to breaking a rule when addressed can change that. The referee’s decisions are final except when overruled in a unanimous decision by the WAW Board of Directors or in the event that the referee reverses his or her own decision based on post-match events.  

NO CONTEST: This ruling is reserved for special circumstances whereby referring a match becomes an unreasonable burden. Examples include but are not limited to attempts not being made to end the contest, a wrestler is clearly too injured to continue, or outside interference without favor.  

DECISION REVERSAL: Except in extreme circumstances, a referee’s decision is final. A decision may be reversed only by the referee him or herself or by a unanimous decision within one week by the WAW Board of Directors. A referee may reverse his or her own decision based solely on post-match factors, not the introduction of new information to which he or she was not a witness. Post-match factors are exclusive to the “good sportsmanship ruling” which dictates that a wrestler may not harm his opponent once a contest has a decision. Refusing to break a hold after the bell or violence carried out after the bell may result in a reversed decision. This ruling is so rarely used that WAW has not a single referee decision reversal on record and only one by WAW’s Board of Directors.  


LEGAL TAGS: A legal tag can only be made in the corner to which a team has been designated. The illegal man or woman in the team may only legally tag if within twelve inches (one foot) of his or her designated post (WAW does not employ the use of special tag-ropes). In WAW, any physical contact between the legal man and the illegal man may be considered a legal tag as opposed to many wrestling promotions that require hand-to-hand contact.  

TAGLESS RULE: In 2005, WAW established a “Tagless Rule” which dictates that a legal tag may be made without any physical contact if the legal man or woman on a team leaves the ring and the illegal man or woman within one foot of his or her team’s designated post enters the ring. This rule was established due to a loophole in WAW’s “No Man’s Land” ruling that establishes that a referee’s jurisdiction ends within the ring. Thereby, a wrestler not in the ring cannot be considered legal. In the terms of a tag-team contest, if no member of a team is legal, any one of them may enter the ring to become legal without a physical tag.  

DOUBLE TEAMING: After a legal tag is made, the referee will issue a five-count to the man or woman who tagged out. While the count is technically a grace period to give the newly illegal man or woman time to exit the ring, the time may also be used to legally team up against opponents.  

ILLEGAL PARTNER CONDUCT: The illegal member of a team in a tag-team match cannot get physically involved. While referees tend to be much more lenient toward illegal tag-team partners than they would be toward those not sanctioned in a contest, any outside interference from an illegal tag-team partner can result in disqualification, though usually not without prior warning. In the event of the illegal tag-team partner holding another wrestler, a five-count will be issued to release the hold during which time a tag may be made to transfer legal status. Continuing the hold without a tag after a five-count may result in a disqualification.  



There is a storied history behind the WAW Championship Title. Originally the WAW World Championship Title (it was renamed when Grave Digger held both the WAW World Championship Title and the WAW United States Championship Title and merged the two), the belt had been held first by Dirty Dealer, who won the title in the first ever WAW contest in November of 1998 by defeating his challenger, The Jersey Devil. The belt has changed hands many times over the years and its carriers share distinctions in quantity of title captures, successful title defenses, length of title reigns, and quality of competition. The WAW Championship is the pinnacle of singles achievement in WAW and taken very seriously by WAW’s competitors.  

TITLE SHOTS: Different wrestling promotions have different ways of awarding title shots. Some feature tournaments, others have a ranking system whereby one’s win/loss ratio is a factor, others award the most popular wrestlers with title shots in order to draw money, others require wrestlers to petition for title shots, and still others seemingly have no consistent method of awarding title shots at all. WAW has a very distinct method of determining number one contenders, awarding title shots, and issuing rematches. Here are some of the ways by which a wrestler may earn a title shot.  

WAW SPECIALS: WAW features six annual Specials, one every two months, and each Special features a match involving many wrestlers who all want a shot at the WAW Championship. By winning that special’s match, not only is the victory itself an outstanding accolade, but also the resulting title shot is easily the best anyone could ever hope for. Winning the Special entitles the winner to a WAW Championship Title Match at the next consecutive Special in a match of the winner’s choosing. The only limitation is the “Clear And Present Handicap Rule.”  

CLEAR AND PRESENT HANDICAP: When a wrestler is awarded a title shot in a match of his or her choosing by winning any one of the six WAW Specials, he or she cannot choose a match which presents a clear and present handicap to the champion. For example, a handicap match is not allowed. One could not challenge a Sudden Death or Elimination Match in which another invited participant is a member of the same registered stable as the challenger. Another example includes when Major Morpheus Morency challenged then-WAW Champion F-O to a Lumberjack Match in which Major Morpheus Morency chose the lumberjacks (he was allowed his match, but WAW President Miss Moody Starr appointed more lumberjacks).  

REMATCH CLAUSE: When a WAW Champion is defeated by a challenger and loses his or her title, the WAW Champion who lost the title is entitled to an unconditional rematch. The rematch may be taken at any time in a match of his or her choosing. A rematch clause may not supercede the title shot of a number one contender who won a special, but may be added to or included in the number one contender’s match so long as it doesn’t break the Clear and Present Handicap rule. There are two exceptions to the rematch clause being unconditional: the Title-Reservation Rule, and the Double-Rematch Rule.  

TITLE-RESERVATION RULE: The Title-Reservation Rule dictates that a the WAW Champion cannot defend the WAW Championship for the two weeks leading up to a title-defense at a WAW Special. Two weeks before the Special, the title becomes reserved for the challenger(s) in order to give WAW time to properly promote the WAW Championship Match scheduled for the Special and to allow both the challenger(s) and the WAW Champion time to prepare for a guaranteed match.  

DOUBLE-REMATCH RULE: An exception to the unconditional rematch for a WAW Champion who loses his or her title, no rematch will be awarded if the WAW Champion loses his or her title in a rematch. For example, if wrestler A is the WAW Champion and lost the WAW Title to wrestler B, wrestler A would get a rematch. If wrestler A won back the WAW Title from wrestler B in the rematch, wrestler B would not get a rematch. The Double-Rematch Rule is in place to ensure that the WAW Championship Title couldn’t be traded back-and-forth between two wrestlers in a never-ending cycle.  

PETITION: A wrestler who feels he or she is entitled to a title shot may petition for one. Said wrestler would be required to file paperwork with the WAW Board of Directors and may be granted a conditional title-shot in which the qualifying wrestler will need to win a match to be granted the title shot. Matches in which title shots are won are rare in WAW as the WAW Board of Directors as well as the locker room frown upon petitioning in general. The act is often viewed as being whiny or begging and that a wrestler should earn a title shot.

AWARDS: A title shot may be awarded for a number of reasons. Title shots may be awarded to answer fan demand, to punish the WAW Champion for certain actions or inaction, in response to a strong win/loss ratio, or as retribution to a wrestler who has been wronged by the WAW Champion his or herself, or by a referee decision that was unfair.

 CHALLENGES: A wrestler may issue a challenge to the WAW Champion at any time and the WAW Champion may accept, either because he or she feels the challenger deserves the shot, or in order to prove something. Challenges accepted by the WAW Champion don’t require sanction by the WAW President or the WAW Board of Directors as the WAW Championship is, in itself, sanctioned by WAW. Because the WAW Championship is sanctioned by WAW, the WAW Champion may make any match he or she sees fit so long as the WAW Championship is on the line. The only exception is the Title-Reservation Rule which supercedes a WAW Champions authority to make matches.  


 The WAW Team Championships were first decided in a tag-team match where Chaos Eclipse, the team of Lord Saturn and Dirty Dealer, defeated their challengers Legacy of Pain, the team of Iceman and Nightmare. Throughout their original run, the titles became almost synonymous with Dirty Dealer, who repeatedly held the titles more than anyone with lengthy reigns alongside both Lord Saturn and Iceman. When the titles were captured by Heaven Burning, the team of Sick and The Jersey Devil, the two relinquished the belts and they became part of WAW’s history.  

At the beginning of 2005, WAW President Miss Moody Starr got authorization from the WAW Board of Directors to restore the WAW Team Championship Titles in a WAW Team Championship Tournament which cumulated in a match at Lord of the Ring 2005 between tournament finalists Heaven Burning and The Big Top Playaz, F-O and Puma, where BTP won the newly restored titles.

 The WAW Team Championships are the team equivalent to the WAW Championship and mean as much to teams as the WAW Championship means to singles competitors. Rules and regulations pursuant to the WAW Championship apply to the WAW Team Championships as well. The only major difference is that there is not currently a mandatory number one contenders match at Specials to grant teams unconditional title shots at the following Special. All other rules apply.



 Now defunct, the WAW United States Championship was once a secondary and ultimately meaningless title. The belt was instituted and established without any explanation in a match between Richie Trump and Four-Twenty Man (later Smoke). Four-Twenty Man won the title and it had been held by a variety of competitors, many of whom went on to become WAW Champion, including The Jersey Devil, F-O, and Grave Digger. The title became obsolete when Grave Digger, then WAW United States Champion, won the WAW World Championship from Sin and then merged the two titles to form the WAW Championship. WAW World Champions and WAW Champions are listed together and considered the same. The titles are equivocal and the WAW Championship Title is the only singles title recognized by WAW both in terms of past and present tense, meaning a former WAW World Champion would be referred to now as a former WAW Champion and former WAW United States Champions are recognized in a historical sense only.

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