In 2005, at the age of 13, Bevis made her debut in the World Association of Wrestling, a promotion run by her family, under the ring name Britani Knight. She went on to hold several championships on the independent circuit within Europe. In 2011, she signed a contract with WWE and started wrestling within its developmental systems, eventually debuting on WWE's main roster in April 2014. In her debut match on the main roster, she won the Divas Championship, becoming the youngest champion in the title's history at the age of 21.
Bevis was born and raised in Norwich, Norfolk, the daughter of professional wrestlers Patrick Bevis and Julia Hamer-Bevis, who once unknowingly wrestled while she was seven months pregnant with Bevis. As a child, Bevis was scared of wrestling because of the injuries her family received and the concept that her parents fought other people for a living. She also intended to become a zoologist. At age 13, she officially made her debut as a wrestler. At the age of 15, Bevis worked as a bouncer and bartender at her parents' bar while they were away. She attended The Hewett School in Norwich, graduating in 2008.
Professional wrestling career
European independent circuit (2005–2011)
Bevis made her debut in 2005, at the age of 13, when her father, who was running a wrestling show, asked her to replace a wrestler who failed to turn up. Her earliest recorded match was in April 2006 when she, using the ring name Britani Knight, teamed with her mother for a loss in a triple threattag team match in World Association of Wrestling (WAW). Knight then allied with Melodi to form a tag team called the Norfolk Dolls (based on the movie The California Dolls) and they wrestled in multiple English promotions. The Norfolk Dolls won the new World Association of Women's Wrestling (WAWW) Tag Team Championship in June 2007 by defeating the Legion of Womb, but it became inactive due to no title defenses by the Norfolk Dolls.
Knight at a Swiss Championship Wrestling event in November 2010
At the age of 14, Knight sent résumés to numerous wrestling promotions around Europe and earned a chance to wrestle in countries like Scotland, Ireland, Wales, Belgium, France, Turkey, Denmark, Norway, and Germany, as well as the United States, managing to travel by herself at 14. She began to compete for singles championships without much initial success. In Scotland, Knight competed for the World Wide Wrestling League (W3L) Women's Title, but lost to Sara in the tournament finals in September 2007. In December 2007, Knight took part in a tournament where the winner would become the first WAWW British Champion, but lost in the finals to Jetta. In 2008, Knight challenged both Sara and Jetta for their respective titles, but failed in her title bids.
Knight went on to achieve more singles success from 2009. In August 2009, Knight defeated her mother Sweet Saraya in a two-out-of-three falls match to capture the vacant Herts and Essex (HEW) Women's Championship. Later that month, Knight once again defeated Saraya to capture the WAWW British Championship. In November 2009, Knight captured the Real Deal Wrestling (RDW) Women's Championship from her mother in an elimination match also featuring Chelsey Love and Stacey Baybie. In December 2009, while in HEW, Knight won the RQW Women's Championship by defeating Jetta in a champion vs. champion match with her HEW Women's Championship on the line. In May 2010, Knight and her mother challenged Amazon and Ananya for the PWF Ladies Tag Team Championship, which they won. On 17 July 2010, Knight lost the HEW Women's Championship to her mother.
On 22 January 2011, Knight captured the German Stampede Wrestling Ladies' Championship from Blue Nikita. Knight also competed at debut show of Turkish Power Wrestling in Ankara in January 2011, with a losing effort against Shanna for the inaugural TPW Ladies Crown. On 11 March, she recaptured the HEW Women's Championship from her mother. Knight returned to Pro-Wrestling: EVE on 8 April to participate in a two-night tournament to crown the first ever Pro-Wrestling: EVE Champion. In the first night, Knight lost a four-way match to Jenny Sjödin, won a Last Chance battle royal, then defeated Sjödin in the quarter-final match. The next day, she defeated Jetta in the semi-final match, and later in the finals defeated Nikki Storm to win the Pro Wrestling: EVE Championship. On 30 April, Knight won the SCW Ladies Championship by defeating champion Amy Cooper. Also in 2011, Knight won an elimination match to become WAWW Hardcore Champion.
On 4 June, Knight lost her Pro-Wrestling: EVE Championship to Jenny Sjödin, and on 26 June, Knight lost her SCW Ladies Championship to her mother during a four-way match also involving Amy Cooper and Laura Wellings. On 2 August, Knight and her mother lost their PWF Ladies Tag Team Championship to Amazon and Destiny in a two-out-of-three falls match. On 12 November, Knight vacated the HEW Women's Championship. Knight also lost the WAWW British Championship to Liberty on 19 November 2011, while also vacating the RQW Women's Championship on that day.
In October 2011 at Volume 42, the Knight Dynasty lost another Shimmer Tag Team Championship match against champions Ayako Hamada and Ayumi Kurihara when Saraya refused to help Britani. Saraya then scolded Britani after the match. At Volume 43, Britani lost to Jessie McKay, which was her third consecutive loss. This led to Saraya disowning (in storyline) and slapping Britani, before a brawl between the two ensued and had to be pulled apart. Britani subsequently challenged Saraya to a match at Volume 44, where Britani defeated Saraya under no disqualification rules, in what was her final Shimmer match.
Bevis was first informed that there would be try-outs for WWE when a talent scout came to a show in England. She was unsuccessful in her first try in November 2010, but succeeded in April 2011. In September 2011, Bevis signed a contract with WWE and was assigned to its then-developmental territory, Florida Championship Wrestling (FCW). She made her debut for FCW at a house show on 5 January 2012, using the ring name Saraya. Her ring name was then changed to Paige, as she made her televised debut in an appearance on the 26 February episode of FCW TV. From March 2012, Paige formed an alliance with Sofia Cortez, dubbing themselves the "Anti-Diva Army". Paige made her televised in-ring debut in a tag team match alongside Cortez on 19 March, where the duo lost to Audrey Marie and Kaitlyn. Paige and Cortez then formed a brief association with Rick Victor, winning a mixed tag team match against Audrey Marie and Aiden English. On 6 May, Paige pinned the FCW Divas Champion, Raquel Diaz in a non-title triple threat match, which also involved Audrey Marie. This earned Paige a championship match against Diaz on the 27 May episode of FCW TV, where Diaz's chicanery led to Paige being disqualified and Diaz retained her title. Dissension was teased within the Anti-Diva Army as Paige moved on to feud with Audrey Marie. Paige lost to Marie on 11 June on FCW TV after Cortez interfered against her, signalling the end of the alliance. On the final episode of FCW TV on 15 July, Paige and Cortez ended their feud with Marie emerging victorious in a no disqualification match.
On 30 January 2013, Paige was assaulted by ring announcerSummer Rae, due to Rae's jealousy of Paige's popularity and success. On 13 February episode of NXT, Paige suffered a shoulder injury after brawling with Rae, which Rae exploited later that episode to end Paige's undefeated streak. After Paige continued to confront Rae, Paige defeated Rae in a singles match, despite Rae's pre-match attack, on 1 May episode of NXT. In June, Paige entered a tournament to determine the first NXT Women's Champion. She defeated Tamina Snuka and Alicia Fox en route to the final, in which she defeated Emma to become the inaugural champion (the episode aired on tape delay on 24 July 2013, the day WWE officially begins her reign).
Paige made her first successful title defense on 14 August episode of NXT, defeating Summer Rae. In the following months, Paige teamed up with Emma to feud with Summer Rae and Sasha Banks. Paige successfully defended her title against Natalya on 4 December episode of NXT, and against Emma on 27 February 2014 at NXT Arrival. On 24 April, Paige was forced to vacate her NXT Women's Championship, ending her reign at 274 days, due to being elevated to the main roster and winning the Divas Championship.
Divas Champion (2014–2015)
Paige posing just after winning the Divas Championship at her main roster debut in April 2014
Paige surprisingly made her main roster debut on the 7 April 2014 episode of Raw, the night after WrestleMania XXX, congratulating Divas ChampionAJ Lee on her successful title defense at the pay-per-view event, after which AJ slapped Paige, challenging her to an impromptu match for the championship, which Paige quickly won, making her the youngest Divas Champion in history at the age of 21, the first Diva to win the title in her debut match and the only woman to hold both Divas and NXT Women's Championships at the same time. Paige had her first successful title defense on 28 April episode of Raw in an impromptu match against Brie Bella, which went to a no contest due to Kane attacking Brie, as Paige escaped. In her first successful title defense on pay-per-view, Paige defeated Tamina Snuka on 4 May at Extreme Rules.
Paige suffered her first defeat on the main roster on the 19 May episode of Raw against Alicia Fox in a non-title match, which led to a title match between the two at Payback, where Paige prevailed. In June, Paige started a feud with Cameron and defeated her in two non-title matches. However, Cameron's tag team partnerNaomi went on to defeat Paige in a non-title match and was granted a title match Money in the Bank, which Paige won. During this time, WWE was criticized for failing to develop Paige's character despite being able to do so for Paige's opponents and for portraying Paige as a vulnerable champion while she was proving herself in the storyline.
On the post-Money in the Bank episode of Raw on 30 June, a role reversal occurred when a returning AJ Lee quickly defeated Paige in a title match to regain the Divas Championship, in which Paige was initially reluctant to face Lee, but she then agreed to the match per request of the live audience. Despite the championship loss, Paige acted as if she were best friends with Lee during tag matches in which they teamed together. At Battleground, Paige lost a rematch for the Divas Championship to Lee. On the post-Battleground episode of Raw on 21 July, after Paige and Lee won a tag match against Emma and Natalya, Paige turned villainous after viciously assaulting Lee. This eventually set up another title match between the two on 17 August, Paige's 22nd birthday, at SummerSlam, which Paige won to capture her second Divas Championship. A month later at Night of Champions, Paige lost the title back to Lee in a triple threat match which also involved Nikki Bella. Paige then formed an alliance with Alicia Fox while still feuding with Lee but after Fox failed to secure Paige a victory in another title match against Lee at Hell in a Cell, Paige dissolved their alliance by attacking Fox the following night on Raw. At Survivor Series, Paige participated in a 4-on-4 elimination tag team match where she was the last person from her team to be eliminated, courtesy of Naomi.
On 5 January 2015 episode of Raw, Paige became a fan favorite again as she rescued Natalya from a post-match assault by Divas ChampionNikki Bella which led to a non-title match between the two the following night on Main Event, which Paige won. This led to a tag team match between Paige and Natalya against The Bella Twins at the Royal Rumble, which The Bella Twins won. Following weeks of being tormented by The Bella Twins, Paige unsuccessfully challenged Nikki for the Divas Championship at Fastlane and on 2 March episode of Raw, after which, the returning AJ Lee saved Paige from a post-match attack by The Bellas. This led to a tag team match at WrestleMania 31 between Paige and Lee against The Bella Twins, which Paige and Lee won in Paige's WrestleMania début. On 13 April episode of Raw, Paige won a battle royal to become the number one contender to Nikki Bella's Divas Championship and was attacked after the match by Naomi, who injured her in the storyline and made her unable to compete. Paige returned on the 18 May episode of Raw, after a one-month absence, saving Nikki Bella from an attack by Naomi and Tamina Snuka, before attacking Bella as well. This prompted a triple threat match between Paige, Naomi and Nikki at Elimination Chamber, which Paige lost. In June, Paige went on to unsuccessfully challenge Nikki for the championship in two singles matches on Raw and Money in the Bank, after Nikki and Brie switched places and in a triple threat match on 4 July at The Beast in the East, which also involved Tamina.
Women's Revolution (2015–2016)
On 13 July episode of Raw, after weeks of being outnumbered by The Bella Twins and their ally Alicia Fox, Stephanie McMahon called for a "revolution" in the Divas division, introducing the débuting Charlotte and Becky Lynch as Paige's allies and NXT Women's ChampionSasha Banks as an ally of Naomi and Tamina, which led to a brawl between the three teams. The trio of Paige, Charlotte and Becky, originally dubbed "Submission Sorority", was renamed "Team PCB", after the first-name initials of each wrestler. The three teams would ultimately face off at SummerSlam in a three-team elimination match, which PCB won after Becky Lynch pinned Brie Bella. On 31 August episode of Raw, all members of PCB competed in the first ever "Divas beat the clock challenge", but Charlotte was named number one contender for the Divas Championship, as Paige fought Sasha Banks to a time limit draw. This led to two matches between Paige and Banks on the 7 and 14 September episodes of Raw, which Banks won, and on 10 September episode of SmackDown, where the two fought to a no contest.
Charlotte won the Divas Championship from Nikki Bella on 20 September at Night of Champions, and during her celebration the following night on Raw, Paige turned on her partners and cut a worked shoot promo, where she claimed Charlotte was only there because of her father and berated other members of the Divas division, including Becky and Natalya. This also led to Paige having multiple confrontations with Natalya. Throughout October, Paige acted as if she wanted to reconcile with Becky and Charlotte, only to attack them. In November, Paige became the new number one contender for Charlotte's Divas Championship after winning a fatal four-way match, but was unsuccessful in regaining the title on three different occasions: at Survivor Series, when she lost by submission, the following night on Raw in a rematch, which ended in a double countout, and at TLC, when she once again lost.
As part of the 2016 WWE draft which took place on 19 July, Paige was drafted to Raw. On 3 August, her mother revealed on Twitter that she was on a hiatus due to injury. On 17 August, Paige was suspended for 30 days after violating the company’s wellness policy. She later explained that she had not failed a drug test, but that the suspension was due to a procedural issue. In September 2016, Paige revealed that she would be undergoing neck surgery and would not be wrestling for an undisclosed amount of time. On 10 October, Paige was suspended again for her second violation of the wellness policy; this time for 60 days. Bevis subsequently tweeted, "Same shit different day. Kids..Please don't get prescriptions or doctors notes. Not acceptable". Her father released a statement saying she had been prescribed medication for her neck injury. However, WWE issued a statement, saying that she had "tested positive for an illegal substance, not a prescription drug". On 19 October, she underwent successful neck surgery and was cleared to return to in-ring competition in September 2017.
Absolution and retirement (2017–2018)
On 20 November 2017, Paige returned on Raw as a heel to attack Sasha Banks, Bayley, Mickie James and Raw Women's ChampionAlexa Bliss. Paige was joined in her attack by the debuting Mandy Rose and Sonya Deville, with whom she formed the stable Absolution. Paige returned to in-ring action in her first match since June 2016 on 4 December episode of Raw, defeating Sasha Banks. Later in the night, the group attacked Alicia Fox. At a house show on 27 December, Paige suffered another injury after taking a kick from Sasha Banks in a six-woman tag team match, thus forcing the referee to stop the match. She suffered an impact injury to the neck, keeping her from competing at the Royal Rumble. Paige continued to accompany her fellow Absolution members in their matches; but did not return to in-ring competition. During the WrestleMania 34 kick-off show, Paige made a cameo appearance as part of the commentary team for the first ever WrestleMania Women's Battle Royal. On the post-Wrestlemania episode of Raw on 9 April, Paige officially retired from in-ring competition due to injury.
Non-wrestling participation in SmackDown (2018–present)
Just a day after revealing her in-ring retirement, on 10 April 2018 episode of SmackDown Live, Paige was announced by Shane McMahon (acting as the commissioner of the show) as the new general manager of SmackDown, turning her face once again and disbanding Absolution in the process. Paige remained on the position throughout the rest of the year, however, on 17 December episode of Raw, the McMahon family announced that starting that night they are taking charge and the general manager position was quietly removed. The following night on SmackDown, Shane McMahon confirmed that Paige is to remain around the show but not in the same position.
In September 2015, Bevis co-launched a coffee company called The Dark Gypsy with Blackcraft Cult clothing company owners Bobby Schubenski and Jim Somers. However, in October 2016, Bevis tweeted that she was no longer affiliated with the company.
In December 2017, Paige launched an online clothing store under her real name, Saraya, at TheSarayaStore.com. She also announced that she would extend her brand to a brick and mortar store. On 26 February 2018, she held the grand opening of The Saraya Store in Anaheim, California. Soon after, Saraya Jade Cosmetics, a makeup line, was introduced. Saraya Jade Cosmetics launched on 16 November 2018. In 2019, she partnered with Hot Topic to launch an exclusive makeup collection.
In March 2017, various sex tapes and photos of Bevis were leaked online. Bevis addressed the leaks on Twitter: "Personal and private photos of mine were stolen and unfortunately they were shared publicly without my consent." She later stated that the leaks caused her to be suicidal and she suffered from "stress-induced anorexia" and had to be hospitalized.
^"WWE's latest developmental signing". Pro Wrestling Torch. 19 September 2011. Archived from the original on 25 September 2011. Retrieved 6 January 2011. U.K.-based independent wrestler Britani Knight will be reporting to FCW in Florida after signing a WWE developmental contract.
^"Devil's Playboys". Herts & Essex Wrestling. Archived from the original on 1 February 2016. Retrieved 8 July 2014. The Devil's Playboys are confident that Britani Knight will successfully defend her HEW Womens Championship wrestling title at the Friday the 13th show.