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  April 23, 1999

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READER ALERT: For all the latest wrestling happenings, check out our News & Rumours section.

Popular Venis up for bout

By GLENN COLE -- Toronto Sun
  He already has been the intercontinental champion and he appears to be the No. 1 ladies man in the World Wrestling Federation.

While Val Venis has been around for just a a year and a half, he has made his mark.

"I think the reason people have stuck by me is they realize that I worked hard to get here and I'll work hard to stay here," said Venis, also known as Sean Morley, who will be on the card tonight as the WWF returns to the SkyDome (7:30 p.m.).

The Venis character is one of the WWF's most popular, with much of it gained by Venis' ability to deliver sexually suggestive messages to the audience.

They are similar in nature to those which the late Rick Rude, who died on Tuesday, delivered in his his career with the WWF and WCW, though Venis doesn't go through the gyrations that Rude did.

"I write about 80% of the lines," Venis said, who also gets help from the WWF creative staff. "Sometimes they will come to me when I'm driving around or going to the next event. Sometimes I test them out on the guys in the back to see if they work."

Venis will battle Hardcore Bob Holly in one of two title matches on the card. The other features Calgary's Owen Hart with Jeff Jarrett looking to regain their tag-team title belts from X-Pac and Kane.

The Rock, meanwhile, will continue his feud with Stone Cold Steve Austin leading up to this Sunday's pay-per-view card. Austin will team with Paul Wight, making his Toronto debut, with Hunter Hearst Helmsley joining The Rock.

Bad Ass Billy Gunn, Road Dogg Jesse James, the Undertaker and his pals, Goldust and Al Snow also will be featured.