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WWE Royal Rumble marks the road to Wrestlemania

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The Rock Wins first WWE Championship in 10 years

The Road to WrestleMania 29 officially began Sunday night with the 26th annual WWE Royal Rumble event at the US Airways Center. Fans in attendance witnessed history as the Rock competed in his first WWE Championship match in 10 years against 434 day champion CM Punk. The annual over-the-top-rope 30-man Royal Rumble match also took place, in which the winner would guarantee himself a championship main event match at WrestleMania 29.

The Royal Rumble match started off in hot fashion with the unexpected return of Chris Jericho. The veteran wrestler proved he still had it, lasting over 40 minutes before being eliminated by number 1 entrant Dolph Ziggler, who was eliminated after surviving for nearly 50 minutes. Taking place in the match, were many exciting moments such as the face off between Cody Rhodes and his brother Dustin, the surprise elimination of Wade Barrett by NXT rookie Bo Dallas, and an elite group of five superstars left to battle it out for the victory.

The final five left standing inside the ring were the Viper Randy Orton, Dolph Ziggler, John Cena, Sheamus, and the monstrous Ryback. Orton would soon be eliminated by Ryback, followed by the elimination of Ziggler at the hands of Sheamus. After eliminating Sheamus, the face of the WWE John Cena was the only person standing in Ryback's way of winning the Rumble in his first ever appearance. Cena though got the best of Ryback by eliminating him after going toe to toe for two straight minutes. John Cena won the Royal Rumble match for the second time in his 10 year career and will go for his 11th WWE Championship at WrestleMania.

Then came the main event where the 434-day-reigning WWE Champion CM Punk faced his toughest challenge yet in the Rock. After 10 long years, the Rock was full prepared to win back the belt he had held on seven occasions. This match met all the hype as these two superstars fought for over 20 minutes, dishing out everything they had. 

Just as it looked like the Rock was going to defeat Cm Punk, the lights all of a sudden went out and the Rock was brutally attacked by the group known as the Shield. Given the prior stipulation made that CM Punk would be stripped of the title if the Shield were to interfere, WWE Chairman Vince McMahon came out ready to do the honors. Before he could though, the Rock interrupted him and said he wanted to win the match fair and square. The bout officially restarted, with the Rock hitting the patented People's Elbow to win the WWE Championship once again.

The Rock still faces the task of holding on to the belt until April 7 when WrestleMania 29 emulates from MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

Until then fans should enjoy the Road to WrestleMania, as the People's Champion is back.

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