The new WWE Women’s Tag Team Champions Natalya and Tamina Snuka recently joined Oral Sessions with Renee Paquette to talk about their recent title victory. This is Tamina’s first championship reign in her eleven year career with WWE. Natalya meanwhile felt that the victory was part destiny, part her and Tamina manifesting their goal into reality. In some ways it’s still unbelievable to her that this all occurred. Natalya recalled some advice she gave to Sasha Banks about headlining WrestleMania, and how it was similar to her and Tamina’s victory.
“So we talk a lot about manifesting like our dreams, manifesting everything we want to happen. I told Sasha Banks when Bianca (Belair) challenged her to the match at WrestleMania, I was with Sasha Banks in the locker room and I told Sasha ‘you’ve got to manifest yourself in the main event. I really think you guys can be the main event at WrestleMania.’ And she looked at me like, her eyes just lit up and she said ‘I want to do that. I want to make that happen.’ And I said ‘there’s no reason you can’t.’
“It was the same thing with myself and Sarona with the tag team titles. We’ve been such close friends for over a decade, she’s somebody I truly look up to in so many ways. And I was like ‘she’s the perfect partner, this is the perfect partnership, this is our time to shine. ‘And we’re going to do it, we’re going to manifest it and we did it.'”
Natalya and Tamina had previously challenged for the Women’s Tag Team Championships at WrestleMania 37, coming up short against Nia Jax and Shayna Bazler. Both described how great it was to wrestle in front of a crowd again and how hard it’s been to work without an audience.
“When we all went out and we stood in front of all the crowd in the beginning, that’s what got you the chills and the goosebumps and the feeling of ‘this why we do this.’ It’s for the fans,” Tamina said. “This is why. Because the love and the passion behind that they have for all of us, that was crazy amazing. I can’t even tell you. And then when we went out and had our match, hearing them cheering and hearing them chant and do all these things, I lost it. You’re losing it in the middle of the match because this is what you miss, this is what you love, this is why you do this. Then going back, like how you said, there’s like no fans? Oh my gosh! Then that’s when you got excited when you saw the whole announcement, we’re going back on the road and we’re doing these shows live. Hell to the yes. Thank you so much.”
“Our audience so important and so special to us and I’ve never, ever, ever taken our audience for granted,” Natalya said. “But when you don’t have them, you just have to dig so deep. I felt so emotional that very first night where we all stood out on stage and we all got to look out at the fans. It was like, I just felt like we had missed them so much. They’re such a big part of our performances. And they can change the course of your career.”
To illustrate her point, Natalya brought up how the audience had changed the course of one of WWE’s most popular stars just a few years ago. She then brought it back to how that same audience helped Tamina get over in a way no one ever expected.
“You look at Becky Lynch’s career,” Natalya said. “Becky was supposed to be a heel. When she turned on Charlotte at SummerSlam it was supposed to be a heel turn for her. But the fans, at that moment, the way the stars had aligned, they felt Becky was deprived. And up against Charlotte, she’s one of the most decorated women superstars in WWE history. When Becky turned on Charlotte, fans were getting behind Becky they felt Becky was deprived. So the fans changed the course of the direction for ‘The Man’ character. It kind of set Becky up to be part of the first ever women’s main event at WrestleMania.
“Then you look at Tamina. Tamina and I, our partnership was incredible, we’re really close friends in real life. But the fans, at WrestleMania, they actually were a part of why we won these champions. Tamina was one of the top worldwide trends at WrestleMania. And nobody, including the people backstage, even myself, I had no idea people would be chanting her name louder than anyone else on both shows. And I was like watching going ‘I can’t believe they’re so behind Tamina.’ Who would’ve thought that somebody that had been sort of in the shadows for a long time, kind of letting everybody else shine, would emerge as one of the biggest babyfaces in the entire WWE?”
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Oral Sessions with Renee Paquette and provide a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription