Marloes Coenen is a woman on a mission.
"The Golden Girl of Golden Glory" has had her eyes set on a rematch against Cris Cyborg for quite some time now. In fact, she brought up wanting to fight the former Strikeforce women's featherweight champion again back in our last interview before she made her Invicta debut against Romy Ruyssen in April of 2012.
Needless to say, she's incredibly focused on her goal, which is redeem herself against perhaps the scariest woman in mixed martial arts today.
Coenen was defeated by Cyborg via third round TKO back in January 2010, but a lot can happen in three and a half years. Cyborg was stripped of her title after a positive steroid test and both women have since moved on to Invicta FC.
The Dutch submission specialist will have her rematch this Saturday night (July 13, 2013) in the main event of Invicta FC 6 in Kansas City, Missouri and she spoke to MMAmania.com about being bigger, stronger and more confident in herself this time around.
Check it out:
Brian Hemminger (MMAmania.com): You were hoping to have a smooth transition from Holland to Kansas City but I heard you had some troubles in that department. What happened?
Marloes Coenen: Oh it was really awful! Now I'm in Kansas City so I'm happy but it started the day we left. We made it to the airport, we were on a train in New York and on the runway ready to take off to Kansas but we got deplaned and we were the only flight that got cancelled. We decided to get a hotel and it was a really bad hotel. The next day we had a flight at 5 o'clock but it got cancelled and we had to go to a new airport for a flight at 7 o'clock but that one was cancelled too. Then we ended up getting delayed until 9:45 pm and finally got in late last night. Now, the sun is shining here in Kansas and Invicta is great.
Brian Hemminger (MMAmania.com): Okay, I've got a few fan questions for you. The first is, do you have any tricks to help you deal with pre-fight nerves especially before huge fights like Saturday night's rematch against Cyborg?
Marloes Coenen: Well it's simple. I compete in MMA because I like doing it. I started with amateur jiu-jitsu competitions and kept progressing all the way up to where I am now. The way I see it, if you aren't doing what you love to do then that's when you get the nerves. I don't get the nerves because I'm legitimately excited to be in there and to compete. To me, no matter who I'm facing, I'm having fun.
Brian Hemminger (MMAmania.com): You've been very outspoken about all the work you've put in with your strength and conditioning for this upcoming fight against Cyborg. Does that mean you're officially done with 135 pounds?
Marloes Coenen: No, no, no, no. Not at all. I just think I'm a better fighter at 145 and that's why I like fighting there. I made 135 three times. The first time I made it I was feeling really good and it was a good fight. The second time I made it was harder and the third time I was fainting half the week. I did a lot of traveling and didn't recover and when I was supposed to rest I was dieting again. I can make 135 but I need a rigorous series of dieting and professionals around me so I can be strong in the ring as well.
Brian Hemminger (MMAmania.com): I've seen some videos of you working diligently with your strength and conditioning. How much stronger do you think you'll be against Cyborg on Saturday than you were the first time you fought her?
Marloes Coenen: I'm still kind of amazed at how I look right now. After training, when you get out of the shower, you look up and see yourself and I'm like, "Is that me?" I'm a lot stronger than I ever have been. I always thought I was naturally strong because my grandmother was a very strong woman but I never did such a professional strength and conditioning program like I've been doing. Before I don't think I did it hard enough or that good because I did it by myself all the time. Now, with Martin, he trains the guys and the girls and it's fun because I'm not he only one and I think it's a big difference right now.
Brian Hemminger (MMAmania.com): I know it's rude to ask a woman about their weight, but you mentioned eating breakfast on the day of weigh-ins the last time you fought Cyborg. With all this work you've put in, how much heavier do you think you'll be when you step into the cage against her this time?
Marloes Coenen: (laughs) I don't know what my weight is right now, but I think I'll be at least 10 pounds heavier. I was always exhausted before, not dieting and I just lost a lot of weight naturally from training back then so I weighed 145 naturally. Now, the muscles have replaced the fat and I'm going to be much bigger and stronger and that makes me happy.
Brian Hemminger (MMAmania.com): While many are bringing up your first fight against each other, you both recently fought the same opponent in your last fights. How would you compare your performance against Fiona Muxlow against Cyborg's?
Marloes Coenen: Well I did win 10 seconds earlier than Cyborg so that was nice. Cyborg did what she always does which is what she does very effectively. I wanted to do the same thing and go in there and get the KO. My trainers told me I had to take it to the ground so I did. We did some drills for that. I ended up in guard again and got the armbar. My stand-up has improved definitely.
Brian Hemminger (MMAmania.com): It looked like Cyborg was slowing down quite a bit against Muxlow despite the dominant striking performance, perhaps because she was trying to hard to finish the fight. Do you think conditioning will be a big factor on Saturday night?
Marloes Coenen: I do. Fiona told me the day after that Cyborg was breathing very heavily. But again, when she was fighting me she was also breathing heavy in the first round. When you have so many muscles on your body, you can get exhausted. I think conditioning will be very big in this fight. Stamina is key.
Marloes would like to thank her parents, her team, her sponsors Onnit Lab, Virus and Fear the Fighter. You can follow Marloes on Twitter @MarloesCoenen.