TEAMKPN Sportfonds helps sports teams on their way to top performance

TEAMKPN Sportfonds will support the sports beach tennis, wheelchair rugby, basketball and canoe sprint in 2022 and helps sports teams to perform optimally and reach the world top

TEAMKPN Sportfonds was founded by KPN in 2015 precisely to focus help on team sports in the Netherlands that are not regarded as front-line sports by NOC*NSF, and that therefore only receive limited financial support. In 2022, TEAMKPN Sportfonds is again making funds available to a number of teams to help with costs such as training camps, travel and accommodation costs, equipment, and medical and sports assistance. Last week the last of the four teams was revealed: The women’s K4 canoe sprint team.

K4 canoe sprint: Competing in multi-seat canoes to reach the top
The canoe sprint is an Olympic discipline which involves paddling as fast as possible from start to finish across still waters (i.e. without waves or currents). Since last year the K4 women’s team has been following a real top sport program, and this raised the athlete’s performance to a high base level. This year, working from this base level, the Watersportverbond (Royal Dutch Water Sports Association) wishes to focus on this team. This requires investment in multi-seat boats. Results in the World Championships in Denmark in 2021 highlighted that there was potential in the K4, particularly with the women’s team. However, up to now there had been very few multi-seat boats available. With our support the team has purchased a new boat so that it can really compete amongst the top nations.

Basketball (five-a-side) on their way to the FIBA World Cup 2023
Over recent years the Orange Lions five-a-side team has been making great strides towards its ultimate goal of joining the top teams in Europe and participating in future Olympic Games. Managed by national coach Buscaglia, the Dutch men’s team has qualified for the EuroBasket, delayed till 2022 due to the corona crisis. In a strong qualifying group that included Turkey, Sweden and Croatia, the Orange Lions finished second in the table, more than enough to qualify. Their next goal is qualification for the FIBA World Cup 2023. The TEAMKPN Sportfonds had already supported this team in the run up to their first-time participation in the European Championships in 2015, and is doing so again. This time the support is not only financial: for the July 4 qualification deciding match at home against Italy, there will be an actual KPN grandstand from which over 200 KPN employees and customers will cheer on our home team.

Wheelchair rugby to European Qualification Championship
Wheelchair rugby is a big Paralympic sport played on a high level in many countries. Since 2014 the Netherlands has been operating a new top sports program to enable it to join the world’s elite teams. For example, it has introduced an intensive training program, expert coaching, and improved top sports facilities. And the results are easy to see: each year our sporting performances get better. This is another team that in the past has received support from TEAMKPN Sportfonds: In 2019, when it participated in the European Championships Division A for the first time. Unfortunately the team’s performance at the European Championship meant it did not qualify automatically for the World Championship in September. The focus therefore now lies on the European Qualification Championship to be held in Norway in September, where a top position will mean keeping a place amongst the world’s top teams.

Beach tennis: On the way to the top in Europe
A relatively young sport in which Bo Groot Antink and Joeri Ertner have now stormed into the top 100 on the world rankings list. With our support they will aim to reach the top 50 and achieve good results at the European Championships later this year in Italy. Beach tennis is a sport rapidly growing in popularity throughout the world. With the support of the fund, the Dutch team is able to compete in all tournaments, so that it can earn the points needed to rise to the top in Europe. The European Championships in Greece and World Championships in Italy (both in September) will both be important points at which to take stock of progress. But leading up to these, the men will compete in at least fifteen tournaments across several continents.

Excellent performances for the last seven years
Since its foundation in 2015, the TEAMKPN Sports Fund has supported eighteen national teams in sports that are recognized as top sports or international match sports, but that are not front-line sports. The sports teams utilize the temporary support to achieve an outstanding performance such as competing in a World Championship or qualifying for the Olympic Games.