- This article is about a professional wrestler. For the actress, see Melissa Sue Anderson. For the soap opera character, see Melissa Anderson (fiction)
Melissa Marie Anderson (born August 17 1982), better known by her ring name Cheerleader Melissa, is an American professional wrestler. She is also the manager of Awesome Kong under the name Raisha Saeed in Total Nonstop Action Wrestling.
Melissa is one of the few second-generation female wrestlers. Her father, Doug Anderson, wrestled professionally before her in the early 1980s. Before she took up professional wrestling, Melissa wrestled on her high school's
amateur wrestling team. Her professional start came from her father's former tag team
partner Billy Anderson and Jesse Hernandez
, who she was trained by briefly in 1998.
Melissa's first match was on August 17 1999
(which happened to be her birthday) against Lexie Fyfe in Douglas, Wyoming
Melissa got her cheerleading gimmick when she became the valet for the Ballard Brothers, a Canadian tag team. She credits them with helping her in the ring when she was first starting out. She also received training from Christopher Daniels for a short period of time before moving on to All Pro Wrestling where she trained under the tutelage of Robert Thompson and Bryan Danielson.
Melissa was personally invited, along with Taylor Matheny
, to wrestle and train for three months at ARSION, a prestigious wrestling promotion in Tokyo, Japan
. Her favorite matches she worked in Arsion were a 15-minute draw against Rie Tamada and her loss to Mariko Yoshida
Melissa has been wrestling for SHIMMER Women Athletes
,, wrestling in all twenty of their supercard DVDs thus far. Melissa has also been involved in all ten of the ChickFight
events; she won the fifth (June 24, 2006) and the seventh tournaments (14th January, 2007), when the tournament moved to the UK. In the first round of the ChickFight tournaments she is 5-0-2, appearing in non-tournament matches for the most recent events where she became the first Transatlantic Women's Champion.
On January 7 2007, Anderson won Pro Wrestling World-1's Queen's Cup tournament, earning herself a number one contendership for the AWA World Women's Championship. Though known for touring Japan, Melissa also toured the United Kingdom in that same month. On the tour, she won the seventh ChickFight tournament, and competed at Real Quality Wrestling's No Pain, No Gain 2007, where she faced MsChif and Eden Black in an unsuccessful attempt to take Black's RQW Women's Championship.
World Wrestling Entertainment
Wrestling in a match for the May 26
edition of WWE Heat
under her real name, Melissa Anderson
fell to a Widow's Peak
in Las Vegas, Nevada
. Melissa has also participated in WWE workouts against Ivory
, Molly Holly
, and Jazz
. One night before her Heat
match, she wrestled in two matches (against Allison Danger
, respectively) for SHIMMER in Chicago, Illinois
Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
On the January 10 edition of TNA iMPACT!
Melissa made her debut as an unknown woman wearing a burqa
, later named Raisha Saeed
and billed from Syria
. She was in Awesome Kong
's corner when Kong defeated Gail Kim
to win the TNA Women's Championship
. She was also at Kong's corner at Against All Odds
when she defeated O.D.B
. She also distracted O.D.B., at Destination X
, to help Awesome Kong retain her title in the 3-Way match, which involved Gail Kim, helping Kong retain her title for the 3rd major title match in a row. On April 13
, at TNA's all-cage event Lockdown
, she and Awesome Kong were defeated by Gail Kim and O.D.B. in a tag-team match.
On the May 1, 2008 edition of iMPACT!, Anderson appeared as her signature Cheerleader Melissa gimmick in TNA, defeating Daisy Haze in a match. However, she still came out as Raisha Saeed alongside Awesome Kong later on the same night. On the July 3, 2008 edition of iMPACT!, Saeed lost a match against newcomer, Taylor Wilde. The stipulation was that if Taylor won, she would become the number one contender for the Knockouts title. At Victory Road, Taylor defeated Kong for the title. Kong and Saeed attempted to attack Wilde post-match, but Abyss came out to intervene and stared down Awesome Kong. This lead to Saeed to slapping Abyss; Abyss responded by delivering a Black Hole Slam on Saeed. Later, on an edition of iMPACT! Kong and Saeed again attacked Taylor and Abyss came to the rescue again. This time Saeed slapped Abyss and escaped. On the September 4, 2008 edition of iMPACT! Saeed lost via pinfall against ODB. ODB chased her backstage and about 3 seconds later came out with her head wrap. Awesome Kong hit ODB in the back of the head while Saeed ran out with her hair covering her face so no one could see her face.
- Finishing and signature moves
- Wrestlers managed by Melissa
- Entrance themes
- "#1 Da Woman" by Tricky (SHIMMER and APW)
- "Firestarter" by Prodigy (APW)
- "Trouble" by Pink (APW)
- "Omori (Kong Rap Remix)" by Dale Oliver (TNA; Used with Awesome Kong)
- "Let's Go!" by Dale Oliver (TNA; As Cheerleader Melissa)
- "Syrian Princess" by Dale Oliver (TNA; As Raisha Saeed)
Championships and accomplishments
When not wrestling, Melissa works as a security guard at a department store
Melissa's favorite opponents include Mariko Yoshida (who innovated the Air Raid Crash finishing move that Melissa herself also uses), Wesna, and Tiffany.
Melissa won Attack of the Show!'s "MySpace Girl of the Week" contest on September 6 2006. She appeared on the show in person rather than the usual via webcam format and went on to participate in later segments of the show. Video of the appearance can be found on the G4 website.