Childhood & Early Life
Sasha Banks was born Mercedes Justine Kaestner-Varnado on 26 January 1992, in Fairfield, California, United States. Not much is known about her family, apart from the fact that she has a brother who suffers from autism. Sasha and her family spent a lot of time traveling in order to find schools and hospitals for her brother. Banks later stated that she was like a second mother to her brother.
She later settled in Boston, Massachusetts, and did her schooling online. She was a huge fan of Eddie Guerrero. She grew up watching 'All Japan Women's Pro-Wrestling,' a show which she was very enthusiastic about. She had a strong desire to train from the early age of ten. However, her mother disliked wresting, and didn't want her to take up wrestling as a career.
In the year 2008, she began her training at ‘Chaotic Wrestling,’ an independent American wrestling promotion, based in Woburn in Massachusetts.
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Her debut match, under the ring name Mercedes KV, took place on 1 October 2010. It was an inter-gender tag team match, in which she teamed up with Nikki Roxx against Alexxis Nevaeh and Danny E. Her debut singles match was on 22 October where she lost to Danny E.
She tasted victory on 7 January 2011 in a tag team match where she and Roxx defeated Alexxis and Mistress Belmont. Throughout the year, she competed in several singles matches. On 2 December 2011, she defeated Alexxis in a 'I Quit' match to win the ‘Chaotic Women's Championship.’
Throughout the next year, she successfully defended her title against wrestlers, such as Luscious Latasha, Nikki Roxx, Alexxis Nevaeh, and Mistress Belmont. On 1 June 2012, she defeated Alexxis, Barbie, and Mistress Belmont in a fatal four-way match to retain the championship. Following her victory, she became the longest-reigning ‘Chaotic Wrestling’ women's champion in history, beating the previous record of Alexxis, which was 182 days.
After her reign of 259 days, the championship was declared vacant on August 18, as she signed a contract with the WWE.
With her new ring name Sasha Banks, she made her debut in WWE NXT. Her first match was against Paige, in which she lost.
Later, she became part of a storyline, receiving letters from a secret admirer who was revealed to be Audrey Marie. However, in an episode of NXT, Marie attacked Banks due to her jealousy of her success. This was followed by a match between the two, in which Banks was defeated.
The feud came to an end after Banks teamed up with Paige to defeat Marie and Summer Rae. In June, she took part in the NXT Women's Championship. However, she lost in the first round. Later, when the championship was vacant, she once again competed in a tournament in an attempt to win the championship. However, she lost in the semi-finals
In February 2015, she defeated Charlotte Flair in a fatal four-way match, winning the ‘NXT Women's Championship.’ A rematch was held next month, where Banks successfully retained her championship by defeating Charlotte again. Throughout the year, she defended her title against several other stars, such as Alexa Bliss and Becky Lynch. Sasha and Charlotte had another rematch in July, in which Banks emerged victorious again, retaining her title.
After a reign of 192 days, she lost her championship to Bayley. A rematch was held in October, where Bayley defeated Banks and successfully retained her title. It was Banks’ last match at NXT.
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Sasha Banks became part of the 'Women's Revolution' which started in 2015. She aligned herself with Naomi and Tamina Snuka, and formed ‘Team B.A.D.’ Her first triple threat match was against Charlotte and Brie Bella, in which Banks suffered defeat. She then faced many opponents, such as Brie Bella, Alicia Fox, and Becky Lynch.
Later, she was drafted to Raw brand as part of the 2016 WWE draft. In her first match, she faced Charlotte whom she defeated in order to win the ‘WWE Women's Championship’ for the first time. After a reign of 27 days, she lost the title to Charlotte. The title was then renamed as ‘Raw Women's Championship.’
In November 2016, Sasha Banks became part of Raw women's team for ‘Survivor Series.’ Even though she was eliminated by Natalya, her team went on to win the match. During the same month, Banks defeated Charlotte in a ‘Falls Count Anywhere’ match to win the ‘Raw Women's Championship.’
In February 2017, Banks helped her friend Bayley defeat Charlotte Flair to win a championship. In the same month, she also overpowered Nia Jax in ‘Fastlane,’ triggering Jax’s first loss in the roster.
In June 2017, she single-handedly defeated Bayley, Jax, Brooke, Mickie James, and Emma in a gauntlet match. She then fought Alexa Bliss to defend her ‘Raw Women’s Championship’ title, but was defeated. In a rematch on July 9, she regained the title.
She faced defeat early in January 2018 against the Bella twins. The following month, she started a feud with her longtime friend Bayley.
Banks then entered her first ‘Money in the Bank’ ladder match in June 2018 and lost to Alexa Bliss.
After much deliberation, Banks and Bayley ended their feud and became friends. They then formed ‘The Boss ‘n’ Hug Connection.’ They even won the ‘WWE Women’s Tag Team Championship’ in February 2019. Their reign ended 49 days later in a match against ‘The Ilconics.’
She took a four-month break from WWE in early 2019 for unknown reasons and returned in August 2019. On her return, she attacked Natalya, posing as a heel. She reunited with Bayley, who had also turned heel, and attacked Lynch and Flair.
After reigniting her feud with Lynch, Banks entered into a ‘Clash of Champions’ match with her in September and won through disqualification. This led to the second ever women’s ‘Hell in a Cell’ match where she lost.
She was then drafted to WWE SmackDown. After an injury to her tailbone, she took another break and returned in October 2019.