Thanks to the popularity of Ronda Rousey – one of the UFC’s most dominant champs – and the consistently exciting product churned out by all-female promotion Invicta FC, women’s MMA (WMMA) has become a growth industry in the States. But what about elsewhere in the world? What about… Australia – a place where MMA’s general fanbase has also dramatic growth in recent years?
To answer those questions, CagedInsider caught up with up-and-coming Australian female MMA fighter Megan Anderson, who provided us with insight into both herself and the scene she fights in.
Americans have the notion that MMA is pretty popular in Australia. Is that the case, and where do female MMA fighters fit in to that scene?
I believe that MMA is extremely popular in Australia; however, we still have a long way to go in terms of the level of popularity it gets in the US. The legalisation of the cage in Victoria was a giant step forward for the sport here in Australia and will help the sport explode even more in a positive way. Aussie MMA fans love female fighters! We always put on a show and can be more exciting than our male counterparts. The only struggle is that there aren’t as many female fighters here in Australia yet to have a strong competitive pool.
How did you get into the sport? What prompted you to want to compete?
Funnily, I originally always wanted to do boxing instead of mixed martial arts. I used to go to fight nights with a friend and I went and picked up tickets for a MMA fight night for a local promotion who persuaded me to come in for a trial. After the first session, I fell in love with the sport. I knew that whether it be boxing or MMA, I was going to want to compete as I thrive off competition and challenging myself.
What is your training background, how old are you, what weight do you fight at, and what do you do for work outside of MMA?
As surprising as this may seem, I was extremely unathletic growing up. I tried out a few different sports in which I was very injury prone and uncoordinated! Mixed Martial Arts has been the only sport that I’ve picked up naturally and have been good at. I am 25 years old and I fight in the Featherweight division which is 145lbs. Outside of MMA I work for an IT Company.
What does your family think of you fighting in the cage?
My mum was a bit upset at first as she didn’t want my straight nose to be broken! But they are so supportive and help me out in so many ways. They just want to see me achieve my goals.
Describe the experience of your first fight? How different was it from your last fight?
Well your first fight is always filled with crazy emotions and as you’ve never done anything like this before, there aren’t really any expectations or pressure. I remember going into the third round and I had a massive adrenalin dump and couldn’t move my arms! As you have more and more fights, you get those emotions under control and you don’t have that adrenalin dump anymore. You know what to expect and what you need to do to get the job done. The difference between my first and last fight was just experience. I knew what to expect, I was focussed, I was prepared and so I went in and got the job done.
While the UFC holds show all over the world, Invicta FC pretty much stays in one place. Would you be willing to come to the US to fight for Invicta?
I’ve fought everyone I can in Australia so to reach the next level in my career I need to go to the US to fight. There’s alot of great talent over there and a much deeper pool of athletes so it’s a must for me to compete in the US. Whether it be Bellator, Invicta or the UFC (when they bring in the 145lbs division), I’ll go wherever I need to and fight whoever they match me against, I’ll be ready.
What is your ultimate goal in the sport?
I want to be the Champ! I believe i’ve got what it takes to be the best and i’m ready to show everyone what I’m capable of. I want to learn off the best, meet inspirational people and grow both personally and as an athlete. I really want to be a great role model to young girls and give them a figure they can look up to and respect. I want to show everyone why i’m the best female Mixed Martial Artist that will ever come out of Australia and along the way inspire others to reach their goals.