Captain Tuerlinckx attaches little importance to defeat against Maaseik: “Logical that some boys once got playing minutes”
19 de February, 2023
Volleyball Lotto Volley League Maaseik – Haasrode Leuven 3-1
In a match without stakes – Maaseik was already certain of second place and Haasrode Leuven of third – and without basic pawns, the Limburgers proved too strong 3-1. VHL deservedly led 0-1, but then encountered an excellent Jolan Cox, among others.
No Ferre Reggers at Maaseik, but also no Hendrik Tuerlinckx at Haasrode Leuven and there were still a few top players who got a rest in a match that therefore had nothing to do. Who can blame coaches Fulvio Bertini and Kris Eyckmans when they gave most of their regular core a rest? Nice to see: the Leuven captain also proved to be an excellent motivator from the couch.
“This was predictable, although of course I would have preferred to play. I always want to play”, says a relaxed Hendrik Tuerlinckx. “But I do understand the choice of the coach. It is only logical that some boys got the necessary playing minutes. Players such as Witvrouwen, Beelaert and Blondeel were rewarded for their weekly efforts in training. We knew from Witvrouwen that he was definitely going to play his match, he already proved that in the past.”
In any case, VHL’s unparalleled basic team got off to an excellent start, with varied attacking play and a solid block defense. Tuerlinckx also saw that along the sidelines. “If you can play without pressure, you sometimes show nice things and you try something unexpected. In the first set that was fully expressed and resulted in a deserved set win, but the danger is that afterwards too much laxity will creep into the game. We saw that again during the rest of the game.”
Maaseik therefore took over command after the 0-1 and made the difference more and more often. And when it did, it was either due to excellent save pressure or an inimitable Jolan Cox. The Antwerp resident excelled with 22 points and an offensive percentage of 75% for a while. “Well, you can expect that from a top team like Maaseik. They doubled every position with a topper. Which is not to say that we have less qualities. Although we lose 3-1, the numbers don’t quite translate how the value ratios really were.”
Done regular competition with the coveted third place as a result, that should not be more for the people of Leuven. Although it all actually starts within two weeks, because VHL will start on March 4 in and against… yes, Maaseik. First there will be a free weekend following the cup final. “No, I’m not going to look at that, because I would rather have been there myself. In any case, I am asking for an extra practice match. That can certainly be useful to optimally prepare for the play-offs”, concludes a hungry Tuerlinckx.