“I’d like to give something back to the country I grew up in as a baseball player.” With these words, Rick van den Hork announced that he will serve as technical director of the Dutch baseball association KNBSB.
The 36-year-old Van den Hork returns home for the first time in twenty years, after a playing career that has seen him top the competition in the US and Asia. “I am now taking this experience and my network with me to the Netherlands.”
There is no shortage of ambition in the new head coach. He wants to bring the kingdom’s team, which missed out on qualifying for the Olympics last year, to the world top. “The goal is to connect with the world’s top five.”
“Play more of the best matches”
“I want to achieve this by allowing our players to play more matches at a high level,” van den Hork continues. “If you look at the top countries in Asia and America, you can see that we are far behind in terms of experience.”
“Our training is good, that is also recognized all over the world, but in those other countries they play at a high level all year round. We still miss that.”
Van den Hork wants to bring the Netherlands back to the top
As a player, Van den Hork has had a great career. “The Holland Hammer” played fifty games in the Major League Soccer MLB. The bowler then caused a stir in South Korea and Japan where he won the tournament.
Therefore, Mark Herbold, Chairman of the Board of Directors of KNBSB, is delighted with the acquisition of such a big name. “Yes, I am very happy with this special man. After Robert Einhorn in the past, we now have an excellent player at home who will lead baseball in the Kingdom.”
“In addition to his net, Rick basically takes a thin athletic mindset with him. He sees that we can still speed up in the field.”
But Van den Hork just left the field. He has no management experience yet. In a sense, Herbold is risking this appointment. “True, but that danger is always there.”
“He comes straight from the field to the office. That’s why we’ve appointed a team to support him. This will make this a success.”
How can this long-term success be measured? Van den Hork: “The mission is successful if we get closer and closer to the top of the world. Preferably as soon as possible.”
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