WrestleMania 31: What time does it start? Full match card and preview ahead of WWE event

A look ahead to WrestleMania XXXI on Sunday

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The Independent Online

The 31st instalment of the WWE’s flagship pay-per-view WrestleMania takes place this Sunday with the WWE World Heavyweight Championship on the line as Royal Rumble winner Roman Reigns takes on reigning champion Brock Lesnar.

Here, we take a look at the full card and the rivalry leading up to Sunday’s main event of the year.

WHAT TIME DOES IT START?

WrestleMania 31 begins at midnight on Sunday 29 March on Sky Sports Box Office channel 743 and Sky Sports HD Box Office channel 752.

FULL MATCH CARD:

AJ Lee and Paige vs The Bella Twins

Despite the Divas Championship not being put on the line in the sole Divas match at WrestleMania, it does feature the four leading stars of the female division. England’s very own Paige will team up with her former adversary AJ Lee in a partnership that has been labelled the ‘Frenemies’ to take on Nikki and Brie Bella in a rivalry that stretches back nearly two months.

Prediction: AJ Lee and Paige to win.

 

Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal

The second running of the annual Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal could well be one of the standout events on the roster given the level of emerging young talents that will be included in the match. While the build-up to the match has been somewhat overshadowed by the battle for the Intercontinental title, but there are still a number of contenders who could use the battle royal to springboard their careers. That could come from a WWE NXT Superstar making the step up such as Adrian Neville, although he would have to go some way to beat the established names that will enter the fracas with the likes of Ryback, Big Show and Kane all due to be involved. One unlikely candidate could be Damien Mizdow, whose partnership with The Miz has deteriorated over the past few weeks and has seen him become a firm crowd favourite.

Prediction: Damien Mizdow to win.

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Could Damien Mizdow turn on The Miz?

Intercontinental Championship 7-man ladder match

Bad News Barrett faces a stiff challenge to hold on to his championship belt against six other men, and he’ll need to do a better job than he has done recently having seen nearly all of his opponents get their hands on the title at some point. Daniel Bryan will be the big attraction in the match, but big things can also be expected of Dolph Ziggler and Dean Ambrose. R-Truth, Luke Harper and Stardust make up the line-up, although that number could easily be bumped up to eight if the rumours are to be believed and a newly-turned- heel Sheamus makes his long-awaited return from injury.

Prediction: Daniel Bryan to win.

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Bryan, Ambrose and Ziggler will all compete for the Intercontinental title

John Cena vs Rusev

The Bulgarian Brute emerged triumphant from their battle at Fastlane but a United States Championship rematch is likely to see the first defeat handed out to Rusev. His assistant, Lana, has gone AWOL since approving the rematch against Cena and the prospect of Cena losing at WrestleMania isn’t a very likely one. What is unlikely is how long Cena’s United States Championship reign would last, given that he is unlikely to be kept away from the WWE Heavyweight Championship picture for too long.

Prediction: John Cena to win.

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Rusev beat Cena's at Fastlane

Randy Orton vs Seth Rollins

This match has the potential to be the match of the night, as the talented “Future of the WWE” takes on the current “Face of the WWE”. Rollins put Orton out of action in December but The Viper returned to a raucous reception a handful of weeks ago, only to disappoint fans by re-joining The Authority. It all proved to be an act of deception though, and Orton really desired to get close to Rollins in order to exact revenge for his enforced lay-off. Rollins is likely to have Jamie Noble and Joey Mercury on his side, and the rest of The Authority won’t be far away.

Prediction: Seth Rollins to win.

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Rollins and Orton's rivalry dates back to last year

Bray Wyatt vs The Undertaker

What condition will The Undertaker be in? We haven’t seen The Phenom since he was defeated in stunning circumstances by Brock Lesnar at last year’s Wrestlemania. Talk of retirement was rife, but Wyatt was able to coax him into a WrestleMania showdown in what could be the passing of the torch in the name of freaky and surreal. However, the prospect of ‘Taker losing a second straight match on the Grandest Stage Of Them All is hugely unlikely, and the prospect of facing Sting sometime in the future also remains a distinct possibility that could begin to take shape on Sunday night.

Prediction: The Undertaker to win.

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Bray Wyatt taunts The Undertaker

Sting vs Triple H

The undoubted shock of the year saw Sting finally arrive in the WWE at Survivor Series last November, and the WCW legend has continued his presence in the business in 2015. That has led to a feud with Triple H, the WWE’s stalwart, and in what is being billed as a clash of the titans, we’ll finally see Sting involved in a match. Both Superstars have sold the fight brilliantly in the build-up, and you can guarantee that the appearance of a sledgehammer and baseball bat will occur too.

Prediction: Sting to win.

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Sting takes down Triple H

Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns

Credit where credit’s due, Reigns has done well to build up hype for this match, but whether there would be as much interest in the bout if Lesnar wasn’t on the verge of leaving the company and Paul Heyman hadn’t worked his usual magic on the mic is up for debate. Reigns is starting to win a portion of the WWE Universe over, although there remains a large contingent against the former Shield star. That said, Lesnar’s fleeting appearances haven’t done him any favours over the last year, and it may take a little something extra to give the match the fireworks it needs in order to merit it’s headline status. Whether that comes from Heyman, a returning figure such as The Rock, or even Mr Money In The Bank, we’ll find out on Sunday.

Prediction: Roma Reigns to win.

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Paul Heyman could hold the key to the main event

WrestleMania airs on Sky Sports Box Office and WWE Network on Sunday 29th March at midnight.

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