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20/03/2014 20:00
Getting to know: DRESDNER SC and Dutch national team libero Myrthe Schoot
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Dresden, Germany, March 20, 2014. Myrthe Schoot – the libero of DRESDNER SC and of the Dutch national team – is a great athlete and personality at the same time. The 25-year old is spending her second season in Dresden. She is working hard and has a dream to fulfil: “It shall come true in 2016, on a beautiful day where the hosts of Brazil and the Netherlands will be playing each other in the Olympic final. In the tie-break I catch the ball, our team scores that rally and ends the set at 15-13 thereby winning Olympic gold,” she says.

That would be the perfect day for Myrthe. However, apart from this big dream, she always takes her role and responsibilities very seriously. It has been already 18 months since the young and good-looking player from Winterswijk moved to Dresden. She is now one of the pillars of the team that this year made the semis of the CEV Volleyball Cup after participating in the prelims of the 2014 CEV DenizBank Volleyball Champions League. She follows in the footsteps of another excellent libero, Kerstin Tzscherlich. She has improved a lot as a player and as a person as well, thereby becoming one of the most loved team members among the fans of DRESDNER SC.  

By the time she arrived in Dresden she was much helped by Tzscherlich. “She really helped me a lot and provided many useful tips. However, I have to stay myself and cannot copy her way of playing Volleyball. I have to find and go my own way.” She discovered Volleyball by the time she was only eight years old following her sister Anne who was already 13 and playing for a Volleyball club. “I started as an outside hitter but the former coach of our national team Avital Selinger discovered my skills in defence. So I switched and became a libero” recounts the 183 cm tall player. She is now fully at ease in her new role: “I have more fun stopping the balls than by clashing with the block. I need to be very communicative with the other members of the team. Moreover, I have to be able to read and understand the game very quickly. Honestly, I do not wish to go back to the position I started with,” she admits.

Like many other Volleyball players, she also has been going through ups and downs in her career. “The happiest moment came at the 2009 European Championship in Poland where we played before 15,000 fans,” she recounts. By that time she was already a national league and national cup champion with her former team from the city of Amstelveen. So far she has played more than 100 matches with the national team. “I was really disappointed last year when I was not retained for the group that played at the European Championship in Germany. It was a very difficult situation for me to stand.” However, she also found the right motivation to work harder than before and is now back in the group: last January she helped the Dutch finish second at the qualification tournament in Croatia whereby they booked their ticket to the 2014 World Champs in Italy. “I am very grateful to our coach Alexander Waibl. He always showed he believes in me and gave me a lot of confidence. He has helped me get back to my real strength.”

Schoot feels good on and off the court right now. “There is a player from Belgium in our team here in Dresden, Elies Goos, and with her I can speak Dutch. This way I feel a bit like being at home,” she says. However, she also perfectly speaks German. “I think that people from the Netherlands are very good at languages and assimilating other cultures. On top of this, I always want to learn something more about the country where I live,” she stresses. She has already explored the historical centre of Dresden a few times together with her parents. “My father used to teach history and knows many things about the past and other cultures. We also went to the Semperopera. There I watched an Italian opera with my parents and it was the first time in my life I had such a chance. It was just amazing.”

Another thing that amazes Myrthe are the fans that regularly get together at the Margon Arena. “Our fans are great and can create a great ambiance in our matches. This is particularly true when we play in the Bundesliga or European Cups. There are not that many people who come to watch a Volleyball game back home in the Netherlands,” concludes the libero who would like to stay in Dresden for yet another season while continuing to work in order to achieve her lifelong dream…

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