Croden, Dinwoodie Matchup Primed for Fireworks

With all their combined wins coming by way of finish, Calgary’s Melissa Croden and Kelowna’s Sierra Dinwoodie could very well put on a show fans won’t want to miss.

Croden (2-0) and Dinwoodie (3-0) will square off in an amateur catchweight bout at 150 pounds, which goes down Saturday night at Rumble in the Cage 57 in Lethbridge.

Despite Dinwoodie being the toughest test of her career, Croden, 26, said she’s entering this fight with same mindset as her past contests, while training primarily at 101 Academy.

Melissa Croden
Melissa Croden working on her wrestling at 101 Academy. (Joel Griffith)

“I treat every fight camp like I’m going in there to fight Cris Cyborg,” said Croden in an interview.

“I’m treating it like I’m about to fight the baddest girl on the planet. I try to keep that mindset in every fight camp, and I try to over-estimate my opponent.”

With the well-rounded game Dinwoodie possesses, Croden said she’s been putting a lot of emphasis on becoming more well-rounded herself.

She said, when facing an opponent as skillful as Dinwoodie, the fight can truly end up anywhere, and she’s preparing for just that.

“This training camp is definitely taking me down some avenues I’ve kind of been avoiding in past camps,” said Croden.

“I’ve really been confronting areas that are long overdue for this fight.”

Croden said she’s anticipating Dinwoodie to come out strong and try to take her down early, but is also wary of the potential of a toe-to-toe war.

She said she’s making sure not to get “tunnel vision” on any one way she thinks the fight may go because anything can happen once the cage doors close.

“That’s the beauty of MMA; you’re never really going to know until it happens,” said Croden.

“For all I know, she could be training some crazy spinning hook kick and come out with that, and I would have no way of preparing for that.”

Dinwoodie Provides Tough Test

Dinwoodie has won all three of her fights prior to the two-minute mark of the first round, but despite her track record of being a quick finisher, she’s preparing to have to spend more time in the cage this time around.

She said although it’s nice to know she can put away here opponents quickly, she knows Croden has the same capability, so she’s prepared for a war.

“I’m ready to go the full fight, and if I can seize the opportunity sooner, I definitely will,” said Dinwoodie in an interview.

Dinwoodie and Croden were actually scheduled to fight in September, but Croden was forced out due to injury.

Even once that fight was canceled, Dinwoodie said she didn’t stop training like she would’ve had the fight still been a go.

“I’ve struggled to find fights in the past, so I always try to show up to the gym, whether I have something scheduled or not, with the mindset I’ll be ready for anything, anytime,” said Dinwoodie.

“Having something scheduled to look forward to is just that extra motivation to be ready.”

Dinwoodie has been training primarily out of RDC jiu-jitsu in preparation for this fight.

Following this fight, Dinwoodie said the thought of turning professional has been a strong consideration.

Nothing is set in stone, but she said with her experience and success as an amateur, she feels she’s close to being ready for the next step.

“I know turning professional is going to put me in another league of fighters. Up the risk and the up the reward, and I’m ready for all of it,” said Dinwoodie.

“The more I get in the cage, the more I want to be involved with the sport, and I know this is what I want to do as a profession and a career. It’s a passion.”