Grapple Nation 3 is back tomorrow, live from the Sugden Sports Centre Manchester, and featuring in a really good superfight is Caz Grayson.
Training for around five year, Caz has taken to the sport perfectly and is someone who is always exciting to see on the mats. Her opponent tomorrow is Christine McDonagh, someone she has trained with, and is looking forward to testing her skills against another skillfull opponent.
Ahead of the day, Caz took some time out to speak with me and let us all know her thoughts and about her journey into the world of BJJ.
Hi Caz, thanks for taking the time out to answer my questions. I wanted to begin by asking what it was that first peaked your interest in BJJ and led you to begin training?
“I used to watch professional wrestling as a kid and kind of always wanted to give that a go so when I moved to Leicester for uni I tried pro wrestling at the same time as trying a submission wrestling class. I was just amazed at how much I wanted to get down there and train, I just found it so interesting and wanted to know more. I also found the pro wrestling to be a lot of pain for not a lot of gain 🙂 “.
Once you first got on the mat and started rolling, what was it that made you want to continue learning?
“There is just so much to learn, I love how complicated and intricate the techniques are. I love collecting theories and principles, it really appealed to me as a personality type. There were also a lot of smaller guys training at the gym at the time and I loved that smaller guys could get the better of massive guys”.
I see that your development comes at SKJ/Combat Base. Who have been some of the bigger influences on your development there?
“There are a lot of influences within Combat Base. Helen Currie has been a massive influence on me and my love for grappling. Helen and Darren Currie are such interesting people with a load of time for anyone who is respectful and loves jiu jitsu. They have given me a lot of time, support and energy over the years and I like the fact that they are open to learning new things from anyone who makes sense rather than being too closed off”.
When you first started training was it always your intention to enter competitons and how have you found testing your skills against over competitors to date?
“No, I didn’t plan to compete at all. It kind of just happened because it was just something that most people did at our gym at the time, so it was natural progression. I absolutely hated it at first but have really enjoyed testing myself over the years and learning from what the competitions throw at me. It is interesting for me to train with women my own size when it comes to competition as there are usually larger men or smaller/less experienced women at training, so that is nice”.
Next up is Grapple Nation 3. How much do you know about Grapple Nation and the first two shows they have put on?
“I know that they have been really well run and I am looking forward to it. I like to support any grappling comp with a good name 😉 I have been working hard in prep and I am looking forward to the day”.
On the day you are involved in a superfight. How does it feel to be asked to compete in a superfight and how much are you looking forward to being involved in it?
“I can’t wait. Yeah, it is interesting. I think it will be a lot of fun”.
Your opponent on the day is Christine McDonagh. How much do you know about her and her skills?
“I have trained with Christine a few times and see her compete, she is very skillful and a good competitor”.
The more times you compete, the more confident you feel and the more you develop. Do you have any specific aims for this superfight?
“I have a couple of secret aims and then it is just enjoy it and learn from it”.
And finally, is there anybody you would like to thank/give a shout out to?
“My team at SKJ for helping me to train and prepare (Abi Steady, Matt Steady, Jenny, Sophie, Emma Crick, chris and Bailey) also my coaches at Combat Base Helen and Darren Currie for there constant support”.