Cheree Crowley (May 6, 1988) is a New Zealander professional wrestler previously signed to World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) under the ring name Dakota Kai on the NXT brand. Before WWE she has wrestled in Shimmer Women Athletes, Shine Wrestling, and also for Pro Wrestling Alliance in Sydney, Australia where she is a former PWWA Champion. She also worked for Impact Pro Wrestling in New Zealand, where she is a former three-time IPW Women's Champion.
Professional wrestling career
Impact Pro Wrestling (2007–2015)
Pro Wrestling Alliance Australia (2012–2016)
In September 2011, she debuted in Sydney, Australia based Professional Wrestling Alliance (Australia) (PWA Australia) for their annual PWWA show, where she defeated Kellie Skater. In August 2012, Evie became the first ever Impact Pro Wrestling NZ Women's Champion, defeating Britenay and Megan-Kate in a triple threat match. A week later, she won the Interim PWWA Championship by defeating Jessie McKay in the finals. She retained the title during her first defense against Kellie Skater on October 6.
Other promotions (2013–2016)
Evie made her debut for the all-female American promotion Shimmer Women Athletes at Volume 53 on April 6, 2013, participating in a five-way match which she lost to Christina Von Eerie and also included Yuu Yamagata, Kalamity, and Rhia O'Reilly. At Volume 54, Evie defeated Kimber Lee to pick up her first win for the promotion, but she was defeated by Mia Yim the next day at Volume 56.
After Impact Pro Wrestling returned after a few months from folding in mid-2013, all the previous title holders were stripped of their championships. Evie won the IPW Women's Championship back in December 2013 and aligned herself with a new heel faction called 'The Investment'.
Evie began 2014 in Japan working on a three-month contract awarded to her through Zero1 Pro Wrestling Australia. She was the first ever female to receive such a contract. She competed with the promotion World Woman Pro-Wrestling Diana. During her stay, Evie also teamed with Madison Eagles in a losing effort against Global Green Gangsters (Kellie Skater and Tomoka Nakagawa) for the Shimmer Tag Team Championships as part of the Joshi4Hope show.
In April, she traveled back to the United States, beginning her second tour in New Orleans, Louisiana. She competed in a losing effort against Hikaru Shida at Shimmer Volume 62. At Volumes 63 and 64, Evie defeated Rhia O'Reilly and Nicole Matthews, respectively.
World Wonder Ring Stardom (2015–2016)
On December 6, 2015, Evie made her debut for Japan's World Wonder Ring Stardom promotion. In her first match she won the vacant Artist Of Stardom Championship alongside Hiroyo Matsumoto and Kellie Skater. They lost the title to Io Shirai, Kairi Hojo and Mayu Iwatani in their third defense on February 28, 2016.
World Wrestling Entertainment (2015–2022)
On June 29, 2017, Evie was announced as a participant in the upcoming Mae Young Classic under the ring name Dakota Kai. On August 28, Kai defeated the villainous Kavita Devi in the first round. A week later, on September 4, Kai defeated Rhea Ripley in the second round, before being eliminated in the quarterfinals by Kairi Sane. On October 4, Kai wrestled in a qualifying battle royal to challenge for the NXT Women's Championship but was defeated by Nikki Cross. On October 27 Kai competed in a Halloween Costume battle royal won by Shayna Baszler. She finished out 2017 with a victory on December 16, teaming with Rhea Ripley in defeating Reina Gonzalez & Sage Beckett.
On April 6 at WrestleMania Axxess, Kai joined the NXT Women's Championship Invitational where she advanced in the first round after eliminating Lacey Evans. On the following day, Kai advanced in the semifinals after eliminating Nikki Cross. On the following day of WrestleMania Axxess, Kai had earned her first title match, challenging Shayna Baszler for the Women's Championship. The match concluded with Baszler retaining the title. Kai went on to enter the a women's battle royal held during WrestleMania 34 Kickoff show, but lost to Naomi. On [April 14]], Kai returned to contendership status after winning a four-way match defeating Bianca Belair, Nikki Cross and Vanessa Borne to become the new number one contender for the NXT Women's Championship. However, Kai once more had to compete for the right to challenge for the Women's title on April 16, defeating Bianca Belair and Vanessa Borne in a triple-threat match. During the course of the month of May, Kai challenged Shayna Baszler for the Women's Championship, beginning on May 5. Kai lost to Baszler in a succession of three later title rematches held throughout the remainder of the month.
Returning the following month, Kai earned two title match opportunities including a rare independent booking with PROGRESS Wrestling, on June 10 at PROGRESS Chapter 71: F.E.E.L.I.N.G.C.A.L.L.E.D.P.R.O.G.R.E.S.S. against the reigning PROGRESS Women's Champion Jinny. She did not succeed in winning the title. After wrestling in NXT house shows in France and Belgium, Kai returned the United States with NXT where at the June 23 house show, Kai competed in a Number One Contender Triple Threat match for the NXT Women's Championship against Nikki Cross and Rhea Ripley. A week later during the June 28 house show, Kai met Shayna Baszler for the Women's Championship but was unsuccessful in defeating Bazler for the title. Kai later returned during the July 28 NXT UK-Tapings, where she defeated Portuguese recruit Killer Kelly. On the following day's taping, Kai lost to sister countrywoman Toni Storm. During the August 25 episode of NXT UK, Kai participated in the WWE United Kingdom Women's Championship Tournament to crown the first-ever UK Women's Champion. On that date, Kai advanced in the first round after eliminating Nina Samuels. The following day, Kai was eliminated in the semifinal by Rhea Ripley. Returning stateside for the August 30 house show, Kai teamed with Io Shirai & Nikki Cross in a tag match lost to the all-mixed martial arts team of Jessamyn Duke, Marina Shafir & Shayna Baszler. During the September 14 house show Kai and Io Shirai with new teammate Kairi Sane lost a rematch against Jessamyn Duke, Marina Shaifir and Shayna Baszler. During the September 22 house show, Kai teamed with Candice LeRae and Kairi Sane in a third rematch, facing Duke, Shafir and Baszler in an elimination tag match but were once more defeated.
She was released from WWE on April 29, 2022.
In September 2009, Evie starred in the music video for "Sweet December" by the Auckland band 'These Four Walls'. In April 2013, 20/20 aired a story which followed Evie on her lead up to her first tour in the United States. Also that summer, she was similarly profiled on the Māori Television sports show Code.
- Finishing moves
- Diving double foot stomp
- Kai-Ropractor (Front flip Backstabber)
- GTK: Go To Kick
- Signature moves
- Entrance themes
- "High Ground" by APM Music (NXT, 2017-2019)
- "Kombat" by Def Rebel (NXT, 2020)
Championships and accomplishments
- Professional Wrestling Alliance (Australia)
- PWWA Interim Title Tournament
- PWWA Championship (1 time)
- PWWA Interim Championship (1 time first)
- World Wonder Ring Stardom
|2015 PWI Top 50 Females|
|Nikki Bella • Paige • Sasha Banks • Santana Garrett • Gail Kim • Charlotte • Naomi • Cherry Bomb • Courtney Rush • Taryn Terrell • Bayley • Brie Bella • Sexy Star • Cheerleader Melissa • Lufisto • Nicole Matthews • Becky Lynch • Kimber Lee • Natalya • Jessicka Havok • Awesome Kong • Candice LeRae • Brooke • Athena • Ivelisse • Jade • Madison Rayne • Leva Bates • Barbi Hayden • Angelina Love • Emma • Saraya Knight • Veda Scott • Velvet Sky • Madison Eagles • Kay Lee Ray • Marti Belle • Kellie Skater • Nikki Storm • Evie • Heidi Lovelace • Tessa Blanchard • Portia Perez • Alicia Fox • Cat Power • Crazy Mary Dobson • Xandra Bale • La Rosa Negra • Malia Hosaka • Vanessa Kraven|
|2016 PWI Top 50 Females|
|Charlotte Flair • Sasha Banks • Asuka • Becky Lynch • Bayley • Jade • Natalya • Gail Kim • Sexy Star • Sienna • Ivelisse • Madison Eagles • Nicole Savoy • Rosemary • Allie • Nicole Matthews • Kimber Lee • Candice LeRae • Paige • Heidi Lovelace • Evie • Cheerleader Melissa • Nia Jax • Santana Garrett • Naomi • Dana Brooke • Madison Rayne • Kay Lee Ray • Alexa Bliss • Lufisto • Amber Gallows • Marti Belle • Emma • Taylor Made • Vanessa Kraven • Su Yung • Ember Moon • Tessa Blanchard • Jessicka Havok • Shayna Baszler • Crazy Mary Dobson • Malia Hosaka • Thunder Rosa • Carmella • KC Spinelli • Veda Scott • Jessica James • Xandra Bale • Kaitlin Diemond • Eva Marie|
|2017 PWI Top 50 Females|
|Asuka • Charlotte Flair • Alexa Bliss • Sasha Banks • Bayley • Io Shirai • Natalya • Sienna • Naomi • Kairi Sane • Mercedes Martinez • Shayna Baszler • Rosemary • LuFisto • Mayu Iwantani • Mia Yim • Allie • Ember Moon • Becky Lynch • Madison Eagles • Nicole Savoy • Nia Jax • Candice LeRae • Toni Storm • Hiroyo Matsumoto • Chelsea Green • Saraya Knight • Shazza McKenzie • Kay Lee Ray • Mickie James • Dakota Kai • Nicole Matthews • Alex Windsor • Deonna Purrazzo • Abbey Laith • Risa Sera • Viper • Carmella • Ruby Riot • Nikki Cross • Vanessa Kraven • Santana Garrett • Tessa Blanchard • Arisa Nakajima • Lady Lory • Shotzi Blackheart • Veda Scott • Alpha Female • Marti Belle • Zoey Skye|
|WWE Mae Young Classic 2017 contestants|
Abbey Laith • Ayesha Ray • Bianca Belair • Candice LeRae • Dakota Kai • Jazzy Gabert • Kairi Sane • Kavita Devi • Kay Lee Ray • Lacey Evans • Marti Belle • Mercedes Martinez • Mia Yim • Miranda Salinas • Nicole Savoy • Piper Niven • Princesa Sugehit • Rachel Evers • Reina Gonzalez • Renee Michelle • Rhea Ripley • Sage Beckett • Santana Garrett • Sarah Logan • Serena Deeb • Shayna Baszler • Taynara Conti • Tessa Blanchard • Toni Storm • Vanessa Borne • Xia Li • Zeda