A marriage is a bond between two people who are to spend the rest of their life together. It’s about commitment, passion and, depending on whom you ask, happiness. Over the past six months Jessica “Jessy Jess” Rose-Clark has had to make some tough decisions in regards to her personal life. She had the best intentions, doing what she thought was necessary in order to progress her career.

She split up with her partner at the time and focused solely on training. However, just like we see all the time in the movies, love conquers all. Now she is not only engaged to be married, but she is also focused on being the best fighter at bantamweight in Australia.

“I had it in my head that I couldn’t have a relationship and a successful career in mixed martial arts,” Rose-Clark revealed in an exclusive interview with The MMA Corner. “I felt as if I was giving fifty-fifty in both my training and my personal life. Chris [Bridgewater, Rose-Clark’s fiancée] is incredibly supportive, and I worked out that I could give 100 percent to our relationship and to fighting and that we are just meant to be together. I am so excited for the wedding; I just want to wear the ring already [laughs].”

Rose-Clark (L) throws her opponent (Unrivaled/Victory Management)

In her last three competitive outings, Rose-Clark has posted wins. She has been able to keep her undefeated mixed martial arts record intact, as well as gain some more stand-up fight experience in a striking-dominated Combat8 bout. On July 13, she faced off with world champion boxer Arlene Blencowe at Nitro 9 and came away with a second-round submission victory.

“Winning the fight was a bit of a relief,” she admitted. “I was so happy because when I went into the fight I didn’t really have a game plan. We’d just worked on learning the correct skills in the lead up. Before the fight, I’d been saying that I wanted a submission win, and I really just wanted to finish the fight. When it happened, I was so happy to get it.

“I think that I did well with my striking considering she had just won two boxing world titles, and I think that my Combat8 fight—where it was primarily striking—really helped going into the fight.”

Rose-Clark trains out of Australia’s best gym, Integrated MMA, in Brisbane, Queensland, and with that comes the opportunity to work with the best coaches and some of Australia’s top fighters. An intense training environment can do wonders to prepare a fighter for the cage and that is something that Integrated MMA does extremely well.

“Training there is intense,” she admitted. “Those boys put you through your paces every single night. There has been such a rapid level of improvement to my skills though, and it’s such an improvement to the gyms I’d trained at before. Don’t get me wrong, those places were great too, but Integrated is just something else. It’s an amazing gym. Every training session is like you are in an actual fight, so it helps a lot.”

Leading into Rose-Clark’s fight, the Integrated MMA professional fight team was on a roll. All five bouts that the team competed in on the Nitro card resulted in wins for the camp, and after competing at XFC Australia on July 20 the team is now riding a 12-fight winning streak.

Rose-Clark (Unrivaled/Victory Management)

“There wasn’t any added pressure to win,” she said. “All the coaches just told us that if we do exactly what we are supposed to do in the fight, then it doesn’t matter what the result of the fight is.”

With women’s mixed martial arts now being featured on almost every card across Australia, the opportunity to compete is coming up more and more often. It would be easy for Rose-Clark to take every fight opportunity that she is offered in order to continue building on her record, but she has other plans.

“I’ve asked not to fight until the end of the year,” Rose-Clark revealed. “There is still a lot of stuff that I want to work on, so I want to be able to focus on training and working on different techniques so that I am ready for my next fight. I still think I have a lot I can learn and that is what we are going to focus on until I get back in there in late October.”

When Rose-Clark walks down the aisle in a little over four months time, her life is going to change forever. Her love in life may be split between two entities—her fiancée and mixed martial arts—but that is something that almost all fighters will deal with at some point in their career. A healthy work-life balance is crucial in any relationship, and Rose-Clark is ready to show that her commitment to the sport she loves, as well as the bond she has with her fiancée, both truly are marriages that will endure until “death do they part.”

Jessy would like to thank Hayley Birtles-Eades and Victory Management, Integrated MM, Home for Haiti and all of her sponsors: Unrivaled, Australian Sports Nutrition Brisbane, Return To Raw, Raw Nutrition, Motor Hospital, Fighters Against Child Abuse Australia and DITTO Dancewear. Follow Rose-Clark on Facebook and Twitter: @jessy_jessmma

Top Photo: Jessica Rose-Clark celebrates her win (Unrivaled/Victory Management)

About The Author

Staff Writer, Australia

Located in Queanbeyan, New South Wales, Neil Rooke has been writing about the sport of MMA since 2011. In the past, Neil has written for Cage Junkies and has written for Fight! Magazine as well as Fist! Fight Magazine. Neil is also a regular contributor to Fight! Magazine Australia and Yahoo! Sports Singapore.