Club: Pinoké Heren 1

Postition on the field: Goalkeeper

Osaka Hockey Stick: Pro Tour 100 Mid Bow

What got you into hockey?
I started playing hockey when I was 6 years old. My biggest inspiration in that time was definitely my dad. He is a former goalkeeper as well and when I was younger I really liked to watch him play on Sundays. So looking at him made me decide I want to be in that goalkeeping equipment as well!

What does hockey mean for you, right now?
Hockey is a really important part of my life. It gives me a lot of joy, to achieve great things together in a team. It also gives my life a lot of structure.

It is really special to represent a club like Pinoké. I am playing for Pinoké for my 5th season and I feel very proud to wear the jersey of our club. Especially during our play-offs last season, when a lot of people from the club came to our games. The atmosfere was crazy and it was really special to play for such big crowds.

I also play for the Dutch Indoor Team. Back in 2019 we played the European Cup and won the bronze medal. During our groupstage game we played the host-nation Germany in a really tight game. We lost 6-7 but we played for 3000 people in the stadium!

What is your pre-/after game ritual?
Before every game I have the same ritual. I always do the same warm-up with our assistant coach. And when I step on the field, I first touch the grass with my right foot.

What is a typical day in your life?
Besides hockey, I really think it's important to invest in your 'working career'. So in September I start my masters degree to develop myself for life after hockey.

I invest a lot to stay fit during the season. So every morning I eat the same healthy breakfast. I also do yoga to develop my body and become more flexible. It's a good way to develop as a goalie.

I also have some sessions during the season with my sport psychologist. The mental part of the sport is for me the most important part to perform on the highest level.

What do you still want to achieve as athlete?
I'm only 24 years old and I have a lot of years to go. With my club Pinoké, we became second of the league last year. I really want to become champion with my club. I'm also really ambitious on an international level. I played in all the Dutch youth teams. The next step for me is to go through to the senior Dutch team and play a big tournament (Olympics / World Cup).

How do you see hockey evolving in the next couple years?
I expect Hockey will be faster and more physical in the next years. I also hope that the sport will be bigger around the world and that more country's invest in the sport so the sport can be even more competitive.

I also hope that Indoor hockey will get bigger around the world. That not only countries, such as Germany, invest in a good indoor competition, but hopefully also other European leagues.

What does the Osaka ambassadorship mean to you?
I am really happy to be part of the Osaka brand. Last year I stepped over from another brand and I do not regret it. It gives me a nice feeling to have a healthy collaboration where they help me grow as an athlete.

I really like the way Osaka invests in the lifestyle part of the brand. They make great products you can use in your daily life!

What would you tell your younger self?
It sounds a bit cliché. But it is really important to ask yourself why you choose to be a hockey player. It is important to have a good foundation. For me, playing in a team was an important reason why I chose hockey as a sport. And this is still one of the main motivations for performing at the highest level. Remember to have fun with your friends, and don't make it too important for yourself. You will find out if you are talented enough to reach the top in a playful manner.