World champs named Dutch team of the year
The pair beat the men’s rowing four and men’s speed-skating pursuit team to take the award after winning the world title in Stare Jablonki in June.
Meeuwsen and Brouwer became the first Dutch world champions when they defeated Brazil veteran Ricardo Santos, a world champion in 2003 and his new partner Alvaro Filho 2-0 (21-18, 21-16) for a victory that was unexpected before the tournament.
The furthest they had previously gone on an FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Grand Slam was the second knockout rounds in The Hague and Rome. Their main aim for the season was to reach a Grand Slam quarterfinal to qualify for A-standard funding from the Netherlands Olympic Committee, but they blew away those targets and made themselves poster boys for the 2015 World Championships which will be held in the Netherlands.
In their victory speech Brouwer and Meeuwsen thanked their coach Gijs Ronnes who has worked with the pair for almost four years and who helped plot their path to the world title.
“You’ve been our coach for four years and without your help we would not been able to reach this astonishing result,” Brouwer said. “We’re feeling the same we did at the World Championships; I don’t think we really believe it.”