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2016-11-29 09:19:00 CEST

More Than Sports: Big adventures for the Nummerdors

Manon and Reinder are facing new challenges

When the Netherlands’ women’s volleyball national team impressed the world with an excellent fourth place at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Manon Nummerdor-Flier was at home. She had a perfect alternative program: Milou, the daughter of her an Reinder was born 10 July.

Nevertheless, Reinder, who played at his fifth Olympic Games in Rio, felt a little guilty. “It was a big sacrifice for her,” he explains. Manon, 32, has been the first opposite of the indoor national team for years. She tried three times to qualify for the Olympics, and now, when the Netherlands made it for the first time since 1996, she had to stay at home with the baby.

“Now it’s her time,” Reinder says. After stepping back from his career as professional player, he will stay at home, while his wife will now start to follow his footsteps. Like her husband did 10 years ago, Manon is switching from indoor to the sand. 

So excited to team up with @marleenvaniersel #beachvolley #worktodo 📸fotohoogendoorn

See this Instagram photo by @manonflier * 1,029 likes

“Originally, she wanted to play at a club abroad,” Reinder told us. But then the Netherlands’ national women’s beach volleyball coach Richard de Kogel invited her to attend the practice sessions, before two-time Olympian Marleen van Iersel asked the 1.92 meter-tall Manon to play with her. “It came totally out of the blue,” Reinder says. In the past they joked sometimes about it – but this time Marleen was serious.

Marleen asked out of the blue

Since 2014, Marleen played with Madelein Meppelink. They won the European Championships in the same year and reached the podium at the FIVB World Tour eight times. “It’s time for new adventures,” Madelein wrote on her Instagram account. “I wish Marleen and Manon all the best together as a team. My road will be known soon.” Manon follows Margareta Kozuch, another indoor player who will go barefoot in the 2017 season. She and Maggie played together in Baku. “Knowing that Maggie also dares to take on this adventure may have helped her a little bit,” Reinder says.

Reinder and Manon have now moved into an apartment in The Hague where Manon will practice during the week. Reinder stays at home, looking after Milou. “I hope I can accompany Manon as much as possible during the FIVB World Tour,” he says.

First practice is a wrap! #newteam #startup #gettingsandy

See this Instagram photo by @marleenvaniersel * 337 likes

Nevobo is planning a big event 2018

Reinder might have quit, but you will definitely still see him on the Tour. He was named the new tournament director for the European Championships which take place in The Hague, Utrecht, Rotterdam and Appeldorn July 2018 – as well as the FIVB World Tour tournaments in the Netherlands in the next two years. “I feel honored to do this and develop myself in a different way,” Reinder says.

He will replace Bas van de Goor, who did a great job during the World Championships in 2015, but regrettably he has recently fallen seriously ill. “I visited him last week,” Reinder says. “He is a fighter and told me that he is very happy that I will try to follow in his footsteps.”

The Dutch volleyball federation, Nevobo, is planning a big event, combining the European Championships with the World Championships of sitting volleyball and the European Championships of the Under-20 indoor volleyball championships.

It looks as if the Nummerdors will face lots of exciting experiences in the near future.

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