A FORMER Swords-based worker has made it to the top of the world - literally! Sheamus O'Shaughnessy defeated American hero John Cena to claim the World Wrestling Entertainment ( WWE) title in San Antonio, Texas on a pay-per-view show, beamed across the United States.
His win was deemed one of the biggest in the history of professional wrestling and one of the biggest shocks in the last 30 years in the sport.
Sheamus, real name Stephen Farrelly, worked in the Hartford company in Swords while wrestling in Ireland with the Irish Whip Wrestling organisation. Those contests brought him to places like the Combined Clubs in Balbriggan and the Fingallians GAA complex in Swords.
However, his dream was to go to the United States and try out for the biggest wrestling organsation in the world. Having passed a series of test matches, he went into training in Florida before breaking into the ECW series in June of this year.
After just a few months he moved to the RAW brand, featuring on US television every Monday, and last week, in a surprise move, was given a title shot against Cena, a firm fan favourite.
In what was billed as a TLC match (tables, ladders and chairs) and Sheamus utilised the timber - a table - to win the match, sending Cena crashing through it to end the match.
His rise to glory in the WWE has been seen as nothing short of remarkable and winning a title so early in his career puts him in the same league as the likes of former champions, Hulk Hogan, Buddy Rogers (the first ever champion in 1963), Andre the Giant and Bret Hart.
Standing at 6' 6'', Sheamus is now likely to feature on all the top shows in various parts of the States in the coming months as he attempts to defend his crown against all comers.
The last time he picked up a major honour was two years ago when he won a Clarion Hotel, Dublin Airport/ Fingal Independent Sportstar of the Month award for his success on the Irish scene.
Last week also saw another former local competitor, Scottish born Drew McIntyre (known around Balbriggan and Swords venues as Drew Galloway) win the WWE Intercontinental title, beating John Morrison.
One of the last times Sheamus and Drew met was at the Combined Clubs in Balbriggan three years ago, after which they decided on travelling to the US to follow their careers, both achieving their goals last week, many miles from the banks of the Bracken.