Lonneke Sloetjes ends her top sports career. The 30-year-old volleyball player announced this on Tuesday through the Nevobo volleyball association. Sloetjes already took a sabbatical in May last year to think about her future and now she is sure she does not want to return.
Sloetjes played for the Dutch team 302 times. The volleyball association describes her as ‘one of the most successful volleyball players in Dutch history’. Sloetjes was a fixture at Orange from 2011 to 2020. She was also part of the team that finished fourth at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics. A year earlier, Sloetjes lost the European Championship final to Russia with the Netherlands.
“Over the past year I have been looking for motives and motives to start playing again”, says Sloetjes. “I didn’t feel like going back to play. I notice that I get a lot of energy from other things that come my way and that I can learn, for example in the field of my studies. I also want to join my family. I am very grateful for everything I have been able to experience. The successes with Orange and the Turkish club Vakifbank will always stay with me. And of course also the many friendships I have gained from volleyball. It’s all right this way . “
Sloetjes won the Champions League twice with Vakifbank Istanbul in four seasons and the World Cup for club teams twice. She became champion in the Turkish league three times and also won the Turkish Cup twice. Sloetjes was voted best diagonal player in both the Champions League and the Turkish league.
“Lonneke really was a world-class player”, says Maret Grothues, captain of Orange. “Despite all these successes, she is one of the most humble people I know. Both on and off the field, she is a very pleasant person who is always there for people. It was an honor to be on the field next to her. miss her. “
Joop Alberda, technical director of the volleyball association, also praises Sloetjes. “Lonneke is a player who brought together ambition, responsibility and perfectionism and that rare mix of qualities makes her a special top athlete. She has always remained very modest and I suspect that she herself does not realize how great she was as a player. Her contribution to the game. Dutch volleyball is credited with large letters in the history of our sport. “