“With Mark we have a trainer who knows Flemish judo very well, but also someone who has already proven to be able to produce top performances with his judokas at the very highest level,” said Technical Director Top Sport Koen Sleeckx. “He will specifically take care of the judokas competing for Olympic tickets and medals. We are convinced of his added value to our framework and wish him every success in advance.”Van der Ham was double Dutch champion U73kg as an athlete. As a coach he developed fast. He won Olympic bronze with Anicka van Emden in 2016. European titles with Roy Meyer. Took titles with Matthias Casse, Marhinde Verkerk, Juul Franssen, Guusje Steenhuis and Kim Polling and coached many youth talents.”I am grateful for the return to Judo Flanders,” responds Mark van der Ham. “In the previous five years I always had the pleasure and energy to work with the athletes and staff. I am therefore very much looking forward to a new cooperation!”Mark van der Ham returns as coach at Judo Flanders. The coach who achieved great successes from 2017 with Matthias Casse and Jorre Verstraeten, among others, made the move to the Judo Federation of Azerbaijan as technical director in 2022. In Azerbaijan Van der Ham didn’t find the optimal connection that would lead to greater success in the Azerbaijan team. Van der Ham left the team by mutual agreement and got his hands free to further develop his Sport Institute De Korte.With the departure of Damiano Martinuzzi to Paris St Germain, Judo Flanders again had a need to fill in for leadership with the ambition to make Matthias Casse an Olympic champion in Paris next year. The federation saw in Van der Ham the ideal solution to stick to its goals.Van der Ham thus remains close to his family in the Netherlands and can complete the circle in Belgium.
Mark van der Ham reunited with Casse and Flanders