Tilburg entered the competition this season as the frontrunner to win the title. But in the first half of the season, it wasn’t Tilburg, but Rotterdam that shone in the women’s promotion category. Until Saturday. Thanks to Tilburg’s 1-3 victory over Rotterdam, the team of coaches Ajith Baumgardt and Marty Baumen finally reached the coveted top spot.
When Tilburg received a penalty in the final minutes of the match, Baumgardt grabbed her fist. Paumen did not dare to look. However, Captain Irene van den Asim turns out to be a wonderful frog. With his efficiency of 6.40 metres, Tilburg knew he was sure to beat Rotterdam and thus first place in the standings.
After the final whistle, the euphoria among the players, staff and the great numbers of Brabant’s crowd was overwhelming. The players flew around each other’s necks. There was singing, cheering and applause. If you didn’t know there are still four games to play in the competition, you’d think Tilburg already secured the championship on Saturday afternoon.
The beginning of the dream
Van den Asim was one of the first to withdraw from the festivities. The international is the manager of the Dutch U18 team and had to board a plane bound for England, where the Orange Girls will play a five-nation tournament this weekend. Over the phone from the train to Schiphol, the experienced defender was able to highlight the match and her role within her squad.
Van Asem, who recently joined the Orange team, particularly praised the “dream start” for her team, who took the lead four minutes later with a goal from Inge Dankers. After 22 minutes, striker Sina Bombach doubled the score. “After that, we didn’t necessarily play nice hockey, but we played business,” Van den Asim analyzed. Hockey is rarely beautiful in such matches, but this was not the most important. At the same time, it’s great that we are now at the top, but we don’t have anything yet.
Assistant coach Martje Baumann agreed with that. After the winter holidays, we started to focus on expressing what everyone is good at. Week after week, game after game. We have a new, young team with a number of experienced players. It took a while to get used to each other, but now we see it getting better every week. It’s nice to see it. And of course it’s a bonus that we made up for eight points behind Rotterdam.
International experience inside and outside the field
Van den Asim, a multiple national champion with den Bosch and 79 caps, is undoubtedly a supporting role in the field. She is even modest about what she gave: “What to add, you’d better ask my teammates.” But I am trying my best to use my experience for the benefit of the team. I check how girls participate in the game. Try to give them confidence. State that you can play business hockey better if you are up front, especially against teams like Rotterdam. Getting a six is the key. Then those extra points will come naturally.
The pasts of coaches Baumgardt and Bommen, both active for many years and acclaimed at Den Bosch and Orange, undoubtedly contribute to the stellar form their team has been in since the end of the winter break. And maybe they also add a touch of indomitable from Bossche in Tilburg? Paumen, assistant coach on paper: “We try to convey that feeling as a crew, but it’s also something the players themselves will experience. The more you win, the more they feel they can play hockey well. This gives you confidence in your own abilities and space to spend less time on things that you don’t have. effect on them.
Whether it is the experience of players like Van den Assem, the coaches class Boomgaardt and Paumen, the talent of the younger generation or the amalgamation of all these factors: the truth is that Tilburg is now at the fore in the promotion category. finally.
With four games remaining for Rotterdam and one point for Rotterdam, ambitious Brabants could go straight to Hoofdklasse hockey after all. Baumen said: “We are happy with the new starting position, but I am particularly proud of the way we played. The steps we are taking. The fighting spirit in the team. We will continue to focus on that and then we will see in four games where we finished the standings.
Rotterdam – Tilburg 1 3 (1-2)
4 ′ 0-1 Ingie Dankers
22 ′ 0-2 Sina Baumbach
25 1-2 Rebecca Huygens
70′ 1-3 Irene van den Asim (SB)