It’s rare to see a coach get in the limelight like Sjoerd Marijne has done in a day. Not many knew Sjoerd before the Indian women’s team’s historic quarterfinal win against the Aussies yesterday.
For the first time, India’s women’s team have entered the quarters and semis of an Olympics, and it won’t be fair if the Dutchman Sjeord Marijne doesn’t get his share of the credit. Someone who has been with the team since 2017, he has worked with his wards with absolute dedication and got his results.
Also read: Tokyo Olympics: Indian women’s hockey team’s projected path to final
An ever cheerful person, Sjoerd took charge at a time when the women’s team was going through a transformation after finishing 12th at Rio 2016. The team has put in a lot of hard work under the Dutchman. His eyes were filled with tears after the team’s win.
“How my heart was? It’s still working. I was like….aaaggghhh but that’s in every match in the last three games,” said Sjoerd after the match.
Soon after winning the match, Marijne posted an image of the team and wrote, “Sorry family, I am coming again later.”
To everyone’s surprise, within just three hours, the king of Bollywood and the reel coach of the Indian women’s hockey team Shahrukh Khan replied to Sjoerd’s tweet saying, “It’s okay to come back late, but come back with some golds.”
The tweet went viral within minutes and received thousands of likes and shares. Sjoerd, who had only around 10k followers and no blue tick on his handle, became an overnight social media sensation.
Sjoerd now has more than 36k followers and is a household name in every conversation about the Olympics. His Twitter handle also got verified after a few hours.
Sjoerd Marijne, the Real Coach
The conversation didn’t just stop here. Sjoerd again replied to SRK’s tweet, “Thank you for all the support and love. We will give everything again. From: The Real Coach.”
Fans were enjoying this conversation after the historic win by the Indian women. The win drew obvious parallels with Shah Rukh’s movie Chak De! India, in which he played the coach of the Indian team. Like in the movie, the real team also beat Australia.
It remains to be seen if the real coach can take India to the perfect ending SRK did in the movie. The Indian women are set to face Argentina tomorrow in the semifinals of the Tokyo Olympics.
Also read: Former India internationals recommend the best way to approach Olympic semifinals against Argentina