Today, the KNBSB held a round table conference about the rejuvenation of team Kingdom of the Netherlands. A few weeks ago, the federation let some players at the right side of 30 know that they would not get an invitation. When you see the current roster, it is even more mind boggling than expected.
Let’s start with the three players on the roster that will be debuting: Aaron de Groot (pitcher), Julian Rip (outfield), and Junior Martina (infield). Especially De Groot and Rip showed their value with the Dutch U23 team during last week’s European Championship, so the addition of these two is justified.
But when players like Stijn van der Meer and Dudley Leonora, who are 28 and 29 respectively are not selected, one would certainly not expect the following players: Mike Bolsenbroek (34), Shairon Martis (34), Dwayne Kemp (33), Sharlon Schoop (34), and Roger Bernadina (37).
I am not saying that the aforementioned players are bad players, on the contrary, but when the KNBSB is talking rejuvenation, cutting a 28-year old and a 29-year old and keeping a bunch of players at the wrong side of 30 on the roster, doesn’t make sense at all.
Why is the KNBSB talking rejuvenation all of a sudden? By doing this so abruptly, it means they started with it too late. It means they relied on the same players much too long. If the responsible persons, would have tried to fit in a young player in each of the past five to ten years, this sudden overhaul would not have been necessary.
If the responsible persons would have cut two of the aforementioned age group of 33 through 37, Van der Meer and Leonora could have been part of the roster. For sure these two are still in the prime of their lives. But by not selecting them, a wealth of experience is lost. With three debutants, this team is not really rejuvenated if you’d ask me.