Stephen Farrelly (Irish: Stíofán Ó Fearghaile; born 28 January 1978) is an Irish professional wrestler and actor. He is signed to the American professional wrestling promotion WWE, where he performs under the ring name Sheamus (pronounced /ˈʃməs/)[14] shortened from his previous ring name Sheamus O'Shaunessy.

Prior to joining WWE, Farrelly wrestled on the European circuit and was a two-time International Heavyweight Champion during his tenure in Irish Whip Wrestling (IWW).

After becoming part of the WWE main roster in 2009, he would go on to be a four-time world champion in WWE, having held the WWE (World Heavyweight) Championship three times and the World Heavyweight Championship once.[17] He is also a two-time United States Champion. In addition to these championships, he has won the 2010 King of the Ring tournament, the 2012 Royal Rumble match and the 2015 Money in the Bank ladder match, making him only the second wrestler (after Edge) to achieve all three accomplishments.

Early life

Farrelly was born in Cabra, Dublin, Ireland and was raised in the city.[18] He speaks fluent Irish, having attended Scoil Caoimhin Primary and Coláiste Mhuire Secondary School, a Gaelscoil.[18] During his school years, he sang in the Palestrina Choir until the age of 13; during this time, he appeared on the Late Late Show and Live at Three.[12] He played Gaelic football for the Erin's Isle team where once he was proclaimed sports star of the month.[10] He also played rugby for the National College of Ireland,[18] where he gained a National Diploma.[19] He has been a fan of Premier League football club Liverpool F.C. since childhood and also supports both rugby union clubs London Irish and Leinster and rugby league club the New Zealand Warriors.[20] He is a former IT technician,[3] and also worked as security for a nightclub, which led to him to occasionally working as a bodyguard for Bono and Larry Mullen, Jr. of U2, as well as Denise van Outen.[18][22][23]

Professional wrestling career

Training and character development (2002–2004)

Farrelly's inspiration into a professional wrestling career came from watching both British wrestling from ITV's World of Sport and American wrestling from the World Wrestling Federation (WWF) on Sky One.[22] On the advice of Bret Hart,[19] Farrelly began training in Larry Sharpe's Monster Factory wrestling school in April 2002,[2] alongside Tank Toland, Cliff Compton, and Cindy Rogers.[19] Six weeks later he officially debuted as a fan favorite under the name Sheamus O'Shaunessy against Robert Pigeon. It was during this time that he developed the nickname the "Irish Curse" after low-blowing an opponent.[18] He soon suffered a serious neck injury after botching a hip toss[19] which sidetracked his career for two years.[2]

Farrelly soon developed his wrestling character by drawing on Celtic mythology. Wanting to move away from limiting Irish stereotypes of lucky charms, leprechauns, and alcoholism, he instead wanted to portray an Irish warrior.[19] Going to a Gaelscoil, Farelly grew up aware of the four cycles of Irish mythology and, inspired by the artwork of Jim Fitzpatrick, incorporated the sword and axe-wielding imagery into his gimmick.[19][22] This included the design of his own pendant, the crossos, which combines the Celtic cross with a Celtic War sword to illustrate his character's "indigenous origins with a hybrid of warrior strength matched with a strong ethical centre".[19]

Irish Whip Wrestling (2004–2006)

In May 2004, still using the ring name Sheamus O'Shaunessy, Farrelly returned to wrestling at the newly opened Irish Whip Wrestling (IWW) school in Dublin. He then made his debut match for the promotion at their Mount Temple show on 9 July against Mark Burns, where he picked out an easy win.[12] He went on to win a battle royal the following month.

O'Shaunessy spent the rest of the year engaged in a rivalry with Vid Vain after losing to his tag team partner Joey Cabray the same night he won the battle royal. On 22 and 23 October they traded wins,[24][25] leading to O'Shaunessy recruiting help from CJ Summers to help defeat the tag team on 24 October.[26] O'Shaunessy was still unsuccessful to defeat Vain in singles action the following day.[27] Despite these losses, his impressive showings earned him a place against Alex Shane in a guest match for the Frontier Wrestling Alliance (FWA) British Heavyweight Championship.[29] Although he put on a proficient exhibit and came close to win, his friend Red Vinny interfered in the match and cost him the championship.[12]

In March 2005, he avenged this loss by teaming with Raven to defeat Shane and Vinny.[30] This victory was part of a winning streak over the end of March where O'Shaunessy wrestled twice a day on 24, 25, 26 – including an 11-man Rumble win – and 27 March with a standard tag match and a ten-man tag team match.[30][31][32][33] This series of victories, aside from one loss by disqualification to Vain,[32] put him to a good form for the one-day tournament held in County Kildare to crown the inaugural IWW International Heavyweight Champion. On 28 March, O'Shaunessy put an end to his main rivalries when he defeated Vinny and then Vain in the quarter and semi finals, respectively.[34] He met Darren Burridge in the final match and won to become IWW's first champion,[7] but had to compete again in an evening show in Dublin, defeating Burridge and Vinny once more in a tag match alongside Vain.[35]

O'Shaunessy's first successful title defence came against Burridge the following month[36] but Burridge would not let his grudge rest, continuing to attack O'Shaunessy and finally costing him the title during a match against D'Lo Brown on 29 May.[12][37] O'Shaunessy earned revenge in July by defeating Burridge in a grudge match,[39] though lost to him in an arm wrestling contest the following day.[40] Still, he continued on his quest to regain the title[12] by winning a contendership three way match against Vinny and Red Viper in August[41] setting him up to regain the International Heavyweight Championship in October from Brown in Newcastle upon Tyne in England.[43]

After defending his title against Vampiro[45] and Viper,[46] O'Shaunessy found himself embroiled in a new feud with rising Scottish wrestling star "Thee" Drew Galloway, whom he later admitted was his toughest opponent.[47] On 28 January 2006, he received his first championship match, evolving their rivalry from previous non-title contests.[49] The rivalry quickly took on a patriotic flavour, with Galloway's blue colours of Scotland clashing O'Shaunnesy's green colours of Ireland, mirroring the Old Firm football derby between Rangers and Celtic, respectively.[50] This football allusion became particularly prominent when the two met again at Verona Football Club again for the title, though the match changed into a Lumberjack match, the result and champion remained the same.[52]

With Galloway defeated, O'Shaunessy continued to dominate by again defending his title against Vampiro on 17 March.[54] Galloway earned himself a two out of three falls match against the champion the following day, however, which O'Shaunessy won two falls to one;[56] the next day produced the same result[58] in a match O'Shaunessy claimed was his best on the independent circuit.[47] With Galloway briefly answered, O'Shaunessy took on the newcomer Pierre Marcaeu and defeated him in two successive title matches only to find Galloway had earned another shot.[60][62] With their rivalry intensifying, Galloway's next challenge to O'Shaunnesy was given the stipulation of a Last Man Standing match. O'Shaunessy retained the title,[64] as he also did in June with the same stipulation.[65] Finally, on 28 August, O'Shaunessy lost the IWW International Heavyweight Championship in a singles match to Galloway in what would be his last appearance with the promotion.[66]

British promotions (2005–2007)

As well as wrestling in Ireland, O'Shaunessy occasionally travelled to Great Britain to make appearances on the British independent circuit. In April 2006 he was brought into Wales' Celtic Wrestling promotion as a contender for their top title but was defeated by the champion, Chris Recall.[67] Later that year in November, he was employed by London's LDN Wrestling to appear on their Capital TV show where, after quickly defeating William Hill, he gained an LDN Championship match against Tex Benedict which ended with Benedict winning by disqualification and O'Shaunessy attacking him after the match.[69]

During his time overseas he worked for Brian Dixon's All Star Wrestling,[70] which gave him a taste of large audiences that he had not experienced in Ireland,[19] as well as wrestling English veteran Robbie Brookside and other British wrestling luminaries, including Nigel McGuinness and Doug Williams.[19] He also represented the UK in a Battle of the Nations tag team match between the UK and Austria alongside Drew McDonald and The Celtic Warrior in a losing effort against Chris Raaber, Michael Kovac, and Robert Ray Kreuzer at the European Wrestling Association's Night of Gladiators.[71]

As well as making top contender appearances based on his growing reputation, O'Shaunessy also brought with him to Britain his long-standing rivalry with Galloway. He had already wrestled in Galloway's home promotion, British Championship Wrestling (BCW), twice in 2005, losing to Jay Phoenix on the day before Phoenix lost to Galloway in March,[73] and returning in September to defeat one of BCW's top stars, Wolfgang, via countout.[75] In the middle of their IWW feud the following year, O'Shaunessy went back to Scotland to take part in BCW's Path To Glory tour, defeating Galloway on the first night[77] but conceding a loss to him the next night in May.[79] Though their feud finished in Ireland in August 2006, it continued on across the Irish Sea when the two wrestled for the umbrella promotion Real Quality Wrestling (RQW) the following year. The two first met during April's Taking On The World show which ended in a double countout.[81] The lack of a decision led to a rematch in June, and one of O'Shaunessy's last on the independent circuit, where Galloway picked up the victory in a No Holds Barred match ahead of an RQW Heavyweight Championship match.[83]

World Wrestling Entertainment/WWE

Early cameos (2006)

On 13 November 2006, O'Shaunessy and English wrestler Stu Sanders appeared on the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) show Raw at the Manchester Evening News Arena as part of the security team ejecting D-Generation X from ringside, only for O'Shaunessy to later receive a Pedigree from Triple H.[2][84] The following day, he and Galloway had a tryout match against each other. The following year in April, he received another set of tryout matches in Milan and London against Galloway, as well as Sanders, WWE talent Jimmy Wang Yang, and Monster Factory alumnus Domino.[85] This led to an offer and signing of a developmental contract with WWE, at which point he relocated to the United States.[2]

Florida Championship Wrestling (2006–2009)

O'Shaunessy debuted for the WWE developmental territory Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW) on 2 October in a double-debut match with a win over Bryan Kelly. While wrestling regularly, he was not part of any long feuds but did wrestle with a number of short-term tag teams alongside Hade Vansen[86] and Jake Hager before teaming with Kafu (and managed by Dave Taylor) in the tournament to crown the inaugural FCW Florida Tag Team Champions. They advanced past the first round after defeating The British Lions ("Thee Superstar" Christopher Gray and "The Rascal" Tommy Taylor), but lost to Brad Allen and Nick Nemeth in the second round.[87]

By September, O'Shaunessy had focused his attention on singles competition and wrestled his way to the top of the card, successfully defeating former partner Hager for the Florida Heavyweight Championship.[10] He defended the title against Hager on 23 October and took on a number of competitors, with Eric Escobar and Joe Hennig consistently earning themselves into contention. Eventually, on 11 December, O'Shaunessy lost the title to Escobar in a four-way match also involving Hennig and Drew McIntyre (formerly Drew Galloway).[87]

O'Shaunessy spent 2009 continuing to chase gold, earning two shots in January and February at the Florida Tag Team Champions Johnny Curtis and Tyler Reks, but he and Ryback were unsuccessful in both attempts. In March he challenged the two for the titles again, this time with McIntyre as his partner, but could not defeat them, nor could he defeat McIntyre for the Florida Heavyweight Championship the following month. He received a series of chances throughout the rest of the year, but could not win any more titles before being called up to WWE television,[88] unsuccessfully challenging Justin Angel for the Florida Heavyweight Championship in November.[89]

On 22 July 2008, O'Shaunessy worked a dark match at a SmackDown taping, losing to R-Truth.[90] The following year in May, O'Shaunessy began appearing at the Raw brand's house shows, and on both 8 and 9 May he defeated Jamie Noble[2][91][92] along with another dark match victory over Noble before an episode of Raw.[93]

WWE Champion (2009–2010)

On the 30 June 2009 episode of ECW, Farrelly made his unannounced debut as a villain under the shortened ring name of Sheamus, quickly defeating a local competitor.[6][94] Sheamus soon entered into a critically well-received[95] rivalry with Goldust after defeating him on 29 July.[96] After exchanging victories in the following weeks[96][97] they competed in a No Disqualification match on 1 September which was won by Sheamus.[95] Sheamus then began a feud with Shelton Benjamin which was hot-shot into a deciding match on 27 October which Sheamus won.[98]

His rivalry with Benjamin ended prematurely when Sheamus was moved to the Raw brand. He made his Raw debut by defeating Jamie Noble on 26 October.[99] In the following weeks, he continued to attack Noble causing him to retire,[100] and, in lieu of competition, assaulted the timekeeper and commentator Jerry Lawler on 16 November.[101] The following week Sheamus appeared on his first WWE pay-per-view event, Survivor Series, when he was part of The Miz's team in a traditional five-on-five elimination tag team match. He eliminated fellow Irishman Finlay and made the final pinfall to eliminate the opposing captain John Morrison and survive along with The Miz and longtime former rival Drew McIntyre.

The following night on Raw, Sheamus won a "break-through" battle royal for wrestlers who had never won a world championship, to become the number one contender to John Cena's WWE Championship. At the contract signing immediately afterward, Sheamus put Cena through the table, and the Raw guest host, Jesse Ventura, announced it would be a Tables match.[102] On 13 December at TLC: Tables, Ladders and Chairs pay-per-view, Sheamus defeated Cena to win the WWE Championship, his first championship in WWE,[103] making him the first Irish-born WWE Champion.[22] He also captured the major title in just 166 days since his WWE debut, making it the third shortest time to capture a title since his WWE/ECW debut.[104] The following night on Raw, Sheamus was awarded the 2009 Breakout Superstar of the Year Slammy Award.[105] On 31 January 2010 at the Royal Rumble, Sheamus defeated Randy Orton by disqualification to retain the WWE Championship, following interference from Orton's teammate Cody Rhodes.[106] On 21 February, Sheamus lost the WWE Championship at the Elimination Chamber pay-per-view in the Elimination Chamber match after he was eliminated by Triple H.[107] During the match, Sheamus suffered a concussion and as a result did not attend Raw the following night.[108][109] Upon his return, he attacked Triple H in revenge, setting up a match at WrestleMania XXVI, where Sheamus lost.[110][111] The following month at Extreme Rules, Sheamus attacked Triple H at the beginning of the show and later defeated him in a Street Fight. After a series of kicks to the head to win, he continued his assault after the match finished resulting in Triple H being written off television for ten months.[112]

On 20 June at Fatal 4-Way pay-per-view, Sheamus won a fatal four-way match, following interference from The Nexus that allowed him to pin John Cena, winning the WWE Championship for the second time and being named the one-hundredth WWE Champion in history.[113][114] He defeated Cena in a steel cage match to retain the championship on 18 July at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view,[115] retained the title Randy Orton on 15 August at SummerSlam by disqualification.[116] On 19 September at Night of Champions, Sheamus lost the WWE Championship to Randy Orton in a six-pack elimination challenge, which also included Chris Jericho, Edge, John Cena, and Wade Barrett.[117] Sheamus received his rematch for the title on 3 October at Hell in a Cell, but was again defeated by Orton in a Hell in a Cell match.[118]

Championship reigns (2010–2012)

He bounced back on 29 November, with wins over Kofi Kingston and John Morrison to become King of the Ring, after receiving a bye through the second round.[119] As "King Sheamus", he faced Morrison again at the TLC: Tables, Ladders and Chairs pay-per-view for a future WWE Championship match, but lost in a ladder match.[120] Going into 2011, he continued to lose to Morrison in a mixture of singles and tag team matches.[121][122] Triple H returned on 28 February and took revenge for his scripted ten-month injury by putting Sheamus through the announce table.[123] On 7 March, after losing a match against Daniel Bryan, Sheamus challenged him to a rematch with his WWE career on the line against Bryan's United States Championship.[124] He won his match against Bryan the following week, winning his first United States title.[125] The rematch between Sheamus and Bryan took place on 3 April, during the pre-show of WrestleMania XXVII, and ended in a draw after interference from the lumberjacks.[126] The next night on Raw, Sheamus retained the United States Championship against Bryan in a rematch.[127] In the 2011 Supplemental Draft, Sheamus was drafted to the SmackDown brand, and made his SmackDown debut on 29 April, and attacking Kofi Kingston. He brought the United States Championship to SmackDown, but lost it back to the Raw brand at Extreme Rules when Kingston defeated him in a Tables match.[128][129]

On the 3 June episode of SmackDown, Sheamus lost a World Heavyweight Championship match to Randy Orton due to biased refereeing from Christian.[130] Two weeks later, he lost a match to Christian, ending his chance to compete in the World Heavyweight Championship match at Capitol Punishment.[131] Sheamus turned face for the first time by starting a brief feud with Mark Henry over Henry being a bully, including a loss at SummerSlam, Sheamus went on a fourteen match winning streak that ended after interference from Christian, with whom he had been feuding.[132][133] During this time, Sheamus defeated Christian in three consecutive matches at Hell in a Cell, Vengeance, and on SmackDown.[134][135][136] He then went on a twelve match winning streak[137] building towards winning the 2012 Royal Rumble. He entered the match twenty-second and won by last eliminating Chris Jericho to earn a main event championship match at WrestleMania XXVIII.[138]

On 19 February at Elimination Chamber, Sheamus attacked World Heavyweight Champion Daniel Bryan after the latter retained his title, indicating he would face Bryan at WrestleMania.[139] On 1 April at WrestleMania XXVIII, Sheamus defeated Bryan in a record eighteen seconds to win the World Heavyweight Championship.[140] On the following episode of SmackDown, Sheamus was defeated by Alberto Del Rio in a non-title match via disqualification, thus earning Del Rio a future title match and beginning a feud between the two.[141] On 29 April at Extreme Rules, Sheamus successfully defended the World Heavyweight Championship against Bryan in a two out of three falls match.[142] Sheamus then returned to his rivalry with Del Rio while also starting a feud with Chris Jericho and Randy Orton.[13] The four-way rivalry culminated in a match for the World Heavyweight Championship on 20 May at Over the Limit, where Sheamus pinned Jericho to retain.[13] Del Rio earned another shot at Sheamus' title on the following episode of SmackDown, but suffered a concussion a week before their match at No Way Out and was subsequently replaced by Dolph Ziggler; Sheamus retained the championship in their match.[13][13][13][13][13] Sheamus went on to retain the championship against Del Rio and Ziggler over the next few months, including at the Money in the Bank, SummerSlam, and Night of Champions pay-per-views.[13][13][14][14] On 28 October at Hell in a Cell, Sheamus lost the World Heavyweight Championship to Big Show, ending his reign, which was the third longest in the title's history, at 210 days.[14]

Sheamus faced Show for the World Heavyweight Championship on 18 November at Survivor Series, where he defeated Show via disqualification, failing to win the title. Afterward, Sheamus repeatedly hit Show with a steel chair.[14] This led to a Chairs match on 16 December at TLC: Tables, Ladders and Chairs, where Sheamus again failed to regain the World Heavyweight Championship.[14] On the 24 December episode of Raw, Sheamus defeated Show in a non-title lumberjack match.[14]

Various feuds (2013–2014)

On 27 January 2013, at the Royal Rumble, Sheamus entered the Royal Rumble at number eleven and eliminated five other competitors before being eliminated by Ryback.[14] After being a frequent target of The Shield,[14] Sheamus gained vengeance on the stable when he united with John Cena and Ryback to attack them.[14] This culminated in a six-man tag team match at Elimination Chamber, where the Shield emerged victorious.[14] In late February, Sheamus aligned himself with Randy Orton to feud with The Shield.[17] Over the next weeks, Sheamus and Orton saved each other from attacks by The Shield and Big Show.[17][17] On the 15 March episode of SmackDown, Sheamus and Orton were then allowed to pick a third partner to face the Shield in a six-man tag team match at WrestleMania 29 and chose Ryback.[17] Three days later on Raw, however, Ryback was booked for another match at the event, leaving the spot open. Later that night, Big Show saved the two from an attack by The Shield and was recruited as their partner.[17][17] On 7 April at WrestleMania 29, Sheamus, Orton and Show were defeated by The Shield, after which both men were knocked out by Show.[17] The following night on Raw, Sheamus and Orton faced off in a match to earn a match with Big Show, however, the match ended in a no contest after Show interfered.[17] Sheamus and Orton then defeated Show in two handicap matches on SmackDown and Raw.[170][171]

Later that month, Sheamus re-entered a feud with Mark Henry after the two repeatedly attacked each other backstage.[170][171][172] Sheamus and Henry then challenged each other in tests of strength, but with Sheamus unable to best Henry, he resorted to attacking Henry.[173][174] After Sheamus attacked a commentary-bound Henry during a match, Henry whipped Sheamus with a belt, prompting a strap match on 19 May at Extreme Rules, where Sheamus emerged victorious.[175][176] Sheamus then began feuding with Damien Sandow, when Sandow hosted a series of mental challenges on SmackDown, and Sheamus repeatedly interrupted and tried to solve the challenges. However, when Sheamus failed to solve the puzzles, he instead resorted to physical violence.[177][178][179] On 16 June, during the Payback pre-show, Sheamus defeated Sandow in a singles match.[180] The following night on Raw, Sheamus was defeated by Sandow and Cody Rhodes in a handicap match after Sandow pinned him with a roll-up.[181] The rivalry culminated in a Dublin Street Fight on the 28 June episode of SmackDown, where Sheamus emerged victorious.[182] On 14 July at Money in the Bank, Sheamus competed in the WWE Championship Money in the Bank ladder match, but was unsuccessful as the match was won by Randy Orton.[183] During the match, Sheamus suffered a hematoma on his left thigh after being thrown into a horizontal ladder, which prevented him from competing that week.[184] Sheamus returned to in-ring action on the 22 July episode of Raw, losing to World Heavyweight Champion Alberto Del Rio in a non-title match.[185] On 7 August, WWE confirmed Sheamus had suffered a torn labrum in his shoulder that would require surgery, and was expected to miss between four and six months of ring action.[186][187]

On 26 January 2014, at the Royal Rumble, Sheamus returned as a surprise entrant in the Royal Rumble match; he was eliminated by Roman Reigns in the final three.[188] The following night on Raw, Sheamus, Daniel Bryan, and John Cena qualified for the Elimination Chamber match for the WWE World Heavyweight Championship; he was eliminated by Christian in the match. This began a brief feud leading up to WrestleMania, in which Sheamus consistently was victorious. He was part of the final four in the André the Giant Memorial battle royal at WrestleMania XXX, before he and Alberto Del Rio eliminated each other.[189] On 14 April, Sheamus participated in the Intercontinental Championship number one contender tournament, which was held on Raw. He advanced to the next round by defeating Jack Swagger, before losing to Bad News Barrett in the semi-finals on 21 April.[190][191]

On the 5 May episode of Raw, Sheamus won a 20-man battle royal to win the United States Championship for the second time, last eliminating the previous champion Dean Ambrose. Sheamus then began feuding with Cesaro and his manager Paul Heyman, culminating in a match between Sheamus and Cesaro for the championship at Payback, which Sheamus won. On 9 June, Sheamus defeated Bad News Barrett to qualify for the Money in the Bank ladder match for the vacant WWE World Heavyweight Championship; the match was won by John Cena.[192] Sheamus was in the Intercontinental Championship battle royal at Battleground; the match was won by The Miz. At Night of Champions, Sheamus successfully defended the title against Cesaro and retained the championship against The Miz at Hell in a Cell.[20][20] He lost the title to Rusev on 3 November, in a match aired exclusively on the WWE Network.[20]

Following this, Sheamus was written off television when he and Big Show were attacked by Rusev and Mark Henry, allowing Sheamus time off for surgery.[20][20]

The League of Nations (2015–2016)

"For months, Sheamus had been in a lower-level position, sometimes comedic, sometimes in a tag team but never presented or treated as the threat-in-waiting for the champion on a consistent basis".

Pro Wrestling Insider writer Mike Johnson describes Sheamus' storyline position before winning the world title in 2015.[20]

On the 30 March episode of Raw, Sheamus returned from injury, having drastically changed his look, including a mohawk and braided beard, appearing to save Daniel Bryan and Dolph Ziggler from an attack by Bad News Barrett, but then attacked Bryan and Ziggler instead, turning heel in the process for the first time since 2011.[20][20] Sheamus then explained his heel turn and new attitude by claiming that "the era of underdogs is over", resulting in a feud with Ziggler.[20] On the 16 April episode of SmackDown, Sheamus announced that he would face Ziggler in a Kiss Me Arse match at Extreme Rules, which he lost.[202] However, Sheamus refused to follow the stipulation, and instead made Ziggler kiss his arse, despite losing.[203] At Payback, Sheamus defeated Ziggler in a rematch.[204] At Elimination Chamber, Sheamus participated in the Elimination Chamber match for the vacant Intercontinental Championship, but was unsuccessful as the match was won by Ryback.[205] At Money in the Bank, Sheamus won the Money in the Bank ladder match to earn a WWE World Heavyweight Championship contract.[206] Sheamus then began a feud with Randy Orton, who was also part of the ladder match, with both men attacking each other and facing off in tag-team matches. Sheamus lost to Orton at Battleground, but defeated Orton at SummerSlam.[207][208]

At Survivor Series, Sheamus cashed in his Money in the Bank contract and defeated newly crowned champion Roman Reigns, after he refused to shake hands with Triple H, to win the WWE World Heavyweight Championship, thus aligning with Triple H and The Authority.[209] On the November 30 episode of Raw, Sheamus announced that he had formed his own stable called The League of Nations with King Barrett, Alberto Del Rio, and Rusev. This new stable, the members of which all have been born outside the U.S., remained associated with the Authority. In addition, he proclaimed his championship reign as "Sheamus 5:15", which is a play on Austin 3:16 and Reigns' short-lived tenure as champion for five minutes and 15 seconds.[210]

At the TLC: Tables, Ladders and Chairs pay-per-view, Sheamus defeated Reigns in a tables, ladders, and chairs match due to interference from The League of Nations. After the match, Reigns snapped and viciously attacked Sheamus as well as Triple H.[211] This resulted in a rematch the following night on Raw for the title with the added stipulation that Reigns would be fired should he lose. Despite interference from chairman Mr. McMahon, Sheamus lost the championship, ending his reign at 22 days.[212] On the January 4, 2016 episode of Raw, he failed to regain the title from Reigns with McMahon as special guest referee.[213] On January 24, Sheamus entered the 2016 Royal Rumble at number 29, where he made to the final four, before being eliminated by Reigns. This loss would end his feud with Reigns.[23][23]

At Fastlane, WWE Tag Team Champions The New Day began mocking The League of Nations, calling them the "league of booty". They then continued to mock The League of Nations in various segments and skits while simultaneously feuding with other teams.[23] At Roadblock, Sheamus and Barrett challenged for the WWE Tag Team Championship, but were unsuccessful.[23] The following night on Raw, The New Day defeated Del Rio and Rusev, prompting all four members of The League to attack The New Day after the match. The League of Nations then challenged The New Day to a match at WrestleMania 32, where they defeated The New Day. After the match, they were confronted and attacked by Mick Foley, Stone Cold Steve Austin, and Shawn Michaels.[218]

On the April 4 episode of Raw, Barrett and Sheamus faced The New Day in another tag team title match, in a losing effort. After the match, the League of Nations blamed Barrett for being the "weak link" and attacked him, ejecting him from the group, before the rest of the team was attacked by The Wyatt Family.[219] The feud was suspended within a month due to Bray Wyatt suffering an injury, which led to Alberto Del Rio commenting that The League might separate soon as a result.[23]

On the April 28 episode of SmackDown, The League would compete in a six-man tag match against Sami Zayn, Kalisto and Cesaro, however, Del Rio and Rusev walked out during the match. Sheamus, who would do the same, confronted Del Rio and Rusev during a brawl, and said that the league is finished, confirming the end of the group. Del Rio would also confirm in an interview that the group was finished.[23][222]

Various feuds (2016–present)

On the May 2 episode of Raw all three members of the former stable competed in the United States Championship number one contender match. Rusev won the match, and eliminated both Sheamus and Del Rio.[223] On the May 23 episode of Raw, Sami Zayn defeated Sheamus to qualify for the Money in the Bank ladder match at the Money in the Bank pay-per-view.[224] At the Money in the Bank pay-per-view, Sheamus suffered a loss to Apollo Crews.

Other media

Farrelly had a small role in the 2006 Irish film 3 Crosses,[19] and played Two Ton in the 2008 movie The Escapist.[225] He also appeared as a Celtic Warrior Zombie in the opening sequence of the 2009 film Assault of Darkness.[22] He played Rocksteady in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows (2016).[226]

He appeared on several episodes of Dustin's Daily News, where he had a rivalry with Dustin the Turkey, the famous Irish sock puppet; this ended with Dustin and Farrelly having a "fight", which Dustin won. Farrelly played a leprechaun wrestler on The Podge and Rodge Show.

In July 2014, Farrelly was involved in the Royal Pains television series as a guest star.[227]



2008The EscapistTwo Ton
2009Assault of DarknessCeltic Warrior Zombie
2016Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the ShadowsRocksteady
2016Scooby-Doo! and WWE: Curse of the Speed Demon[228]Himself


2014Royal Pains

In wrestling

Championships and accomplishments

1 Sheamus' first two reigns were when the title was known as the WWE Championship.

Lucha de Apuesta record

Winner (wager)Loser (wager)LocationEventDateNotes
Roman Reigns (contract)Sheamus (championship)Philadelphia, PennsylvaniaRawDecember 14, 2015[212]