Jake "The Snake" Roberts returns on Old School episode of WWE Raw
Last Updated: 21/01/14 3:23pm
Jake Roberts brought a scaly surprise to Monday Night Raw...
Monday Night Raw's 'Old School' edition was bookended by snakes.
The Viper, aka Randy Orton, bickered with former Evolution stablemate Ric Flair before being sent scurrying by Royal Rumble opponent John Cena towards the beginning of an action-packed show.
Plus, Jake "The Snake" Roberts made a shock return in the closing stages, removing a serpent from his bag and placing it on top of stricken Shield member Dean Ambrose.
WWE World Heavyweight Champion Orton gatecrashed Flair's address to the WWE Universe in Baltimore and demanded that The Authority scrap his title match with Cena at the Royal Rumble on January 26.
WWE ROYAL RUMBLE
1am, Sun, Jan 26 (Mon)
Live on Sky Sports Box Office
However, the Nature Boy mocked The Apex Predator's statement that he was the WWE's kingpin and when an irate Orton seemed primed to attack his one-time mentor, The Cenation Leader emerged and sent his enemy into retreat.
Roberts' interjection, meanwhile, came after Roman Reigns had - thanks to a distraction from pal Ambrose - defeated CM Punk in the evening's main event courtesy of a stomach-churning spear.
Punk, with the help of The New Age Outlaws, responded to his defeat by flattening Ambrose whilst Reigns and Seth Rollins fled, and Roberts compounded the black-clad rebel's woe by putting him face-to-face with a Banana California King Snake.
"Rowdy" Roddy Piper had earlier tried to cause fractions in The Shield during a disorderly episode of Piper's Pit, while plenty more WWE legends reared their heads on the first Monday-night extravaganza of 2014.
Sgt Slaughter was the guest referee as The Great Khali clobbered his way to victory over Damien Sandow, and Too Cool - Grandmaster Sexay, Scotty 2 Hotty and Rikishi - beat 3MB before engaging in a post-match dance.
Elsewhere, Daniel Bryan seemed fully embedded in the Wyatt Family having joined the eerie faction last week, but the submission specialist, Luke Harper and Erick Rowan still slipped to defeat against Rey Mysterio and The Usos.
WWE Tag Team Champions Cody Rhodes Goldust - fresh from successfully defending their titles in a clash with Harper and Rowan on Smackdown - overcame The Real Americans, while Big E Langston floored Curtis Axel.
1am, Mon, Sky Sports 3 (Tue)
Alberto Del Rio got the better of fellow Mexican Sin Cara - and announced his eyes were now fixed on Batista, who will return to Raw on January 20 - and Aksana and Alicia Fox saw off The Bella Twins in a Divas encounter.
Brock Lesnar, meanwhile, attacked Mark Henry for the second Monday evening running, putting The World's Strongest Man in the Kimura Lock manoeuvre that has previously broken the arms of both Triple H and Shawn Michaels.
But as he swanned away from the carnage he had caused, the Anomaly was met by Big Show, with the World's Largest Athlete sending Lesnar flying when he decided to strike.
Watch Raw and Smackdown every week on Sky Sports and make sure you witness the Royal Rumble, 1am, Sunday, January 26 (Monday morning) on Sky Sports Box Office.
Royal Rumble booking details
WWE Royal Rumble will be shown on Sky Sports Box Office (channel 743) and Sky Sports HD Box Office (channel 752) at 1am on Sunday, January 26 (Monday morning).
WWE Royal Rumble will be repeated on Sky Sports Box Office (channel 743) BUT NOT Sky Sports HD Box Office (channel 752) between 9am, Monday, January 27 and 9pm, Saturday, February 1. Repeats showing will last for three hours.
The event is priced at £14.95 for UK customers, €21.95 for customers in the Republic of Ireland.
You can order WWE Royal Rumble from Friday, January 17 by pressing the Box Office button on your remote. Select 'sports & events' and follow the on-screen instructions.
Viewers can call 08442 410 888 from Friday, January 17 to book WWE Royal Rumble. (There may be an additional charge for telephone bookings).
You can also book WWE Rumble online from Friday, January 17 by visiting this link: https://my.sky.com/orderboxoffice/
Cable customers should contact their local cable operator.