My name is Carleigh Crawford and I’m 31 years old. I train out of the Thaiboxing Pit with Blair Smith. I also train with my husband Burty at his gym Dinky Di Muay Thai. I fight anywhere between 66kg – 70kg. I have had 11 fights, 7 wins, 3 losses, 1 draw and 2 KO’s.
1. How long have you been training Muay Thai and what made you want to fight?
I have been training since 2001. When I started training it was just for fitness reasons. Then I started going to all the fight nights and that’s what made me want to fight. I also wanted to test myself and see where I was at with my skills.
2. What has been your biggest challenge as a female fighter?
The biggest challenge as a female fighter is definitely finding opponents. I’m at the heavier end of the weight divisions and it’s always difficult to find opponents. That is one of the reasons why I will agree to fight over my preferred fight weight. Getting beaten up at training by all the guys that are 10 years younger than me can get challenging at times. No respect for their elders! Haha.
3. What drives you to fight?
I guess I just really enjoy hitting people. I want to be the best at what I do so that’s what drives me to fight and train and push myself.
4. Hardest fight and why?
My hardest fight would have been Melissa Anderson as I was unwell in the lead up to that fight. I had 3 root canals, an infected jaw and was on strong antibiotics at the time. My training in the lead up to that fight suffered as result. The gym motto is “the pit, never quit” so I just got in there and gave it my best.
5. Favourite Muay Thai weapon?
6. What are your goals as a fighter?
I just want to have as many fights as I can before I get too old. Eventually work my way up to fighting the top female fighters in my weight division. Win or lose at the end of my career I want to be able to say I’ve been in the ring and mixed it up with some of the best female fighters.
7. What do you think is the most important thing to remember as a fighter?
Always listen to your corner. They will always tell you what you need to be doing.
8. How do you deal with pre fight nerves?
I have pre-fight things I always do. I have to fight in a brand new pair of shorts. I won’t fight in shorts I have worn before. I like to get a new fight outfit (ankle straps, crop top and shorts). I always get a manicure and pedicure and have my hair braided a couple of days before the fight. I just focus on picking my fight outfit and then my nerves don’t normally kick in until I’m in the ring and centre ring with the ref but by then it’s too late as you are punching on within a few minutes.
We are heading in the right direction. More promotion of female fighters through Facebook pages and other online forums or groups like Nationally Registered Fighters. Maybe an all girl fight show.
10. Any advise you would like to give to any females wanting to start training or fighting?
DO IT!! Training and fighting is one of the best things you can possibly do. Once you start you get addicted and you will love it. There is nothing better than getting in the ring in a glittery pair of shorts and punching on!
Any last words? or people you would like to thank?
Would like to thank Blair and Burty for all the time they put in to me and my training. Especially Blair as I know he has to work pretty damn hard to get me fights. All the guys and girls and Thaiboxing Pit and Dinky Di Muay Thai as they are awesome training partners. Also thanks to Jay who works wonders with his strength and conditioning training.
Sponsors: Jetts Fitness Forrestfield, Distinctive Detailers and Joesups
You can find Carleigh Training (HERE)
Interview By Natasha Sky Feb 2013