I was overly critical of the Natalya vs Lacey Evans feud being used on WWE in recent weeks/months. Without either woman holding a championship belt, it seemed rather pointless and overdone. Well, now we know why WWE was pushing this feud down our throats. Tomorrow’s Crown Jewel pay-per-view will feature a historic moment as Natalya will face Lacey in the first-ever women’s match held in Saudi Arabia.
A press release provided to Forbes states: “WWE (NYSE: WWE) today announced at a press conference at King Fahd International Stadium in Riyadh that the first-ever WWE women’s match in Saudi Arabia will take place tomorrow, October 31 as part of Riyadh Season, which includes more than 100 events over a two-month span featuring world-class entertainment and sports properties.”
Last year, WWE made a last ditch effort to see this moment come to fruition when it pitched Alexa Bliss vs Natalya to Saudi Arabia; an idea that was later vetoed for a number of reasons. Still, Renee Young was able to serve as commentator last year, which was also a first for the company and its lucrative deal with the Saudi Arabian government.
Reactions to the recently announced Natalya vs Lacey Evans match at Crown Jewel has been met with mixed emotions. Many fans and wrestlers alike are cheering for this moment in women’s equality history, while others are complaining that Lacey Evans doesn’t deserve the opportunity over women who are bigger stars and have longer careers in WWE. Then, there’s the underdone of general displeasure from viewers that WWE is in Saudi Arabia in the first place due to nasty political and ethical views held by the government there. Which is, ya know, valid.
Will you be watching Crown Jewel tomorrow? Other matches on the card include Team Hogan vs Team Flair, Braun Strowman vs Tyson Fury, Brock Lesnar vs Cain Velasquez, Mansoor vs Cesaro, a nine team tag team battle, Seth Rollins vs The Fiend, a twenty man Battle Royal and AJ Styles vs the Royal winner.