Open about Oslo – Elisabeth Reyniers & Jérôme Noiret

With European Games coming very soon, we thought it would be nice to do a Q&A with some the players who’ll be representing the Belgian Gryffins, the national team of Belgium.

Elisabeth Reyniers usually plays for Antwerp A. She has represented the Belgian Gryffins since 2015 as a beater.

Elisabeth Reyniers usually plays for Antwerp A. She has represented the Belgian Gryffins since 2015 as a beater.

Hey Elisabeth! In just a couple of weeks you will compete for the second time at the European games. Can you take us back to Elisabeth in 2015? How did she experience the first edition of European Games?

2015 Elisabeth was a pretty insecure player. It was my first season of playing quidditch so playing against some of the biggest names in Europe gave me a lot of stress. I didn’t have a lot of experience and I remember that I found it very frustrating that I couldn’t make a big difference on pitch. Apart from that, it was a great experience to play against some top quality European countries.

Two years later you have won the European Quidditch Cup with Antwerp QC, something you want to do with Belgium as well?

Of course! Winning EQC was incredibly satisfying after so many years of hard work. It would be amazing to do it again this summer and to prove that Belgium can also win European titles as a country.

Last year at World Cup Belgium ended on a 7th place, a disappointment for most of the Gryffins, how do you look back on it? Did the result have an impact on you this season and why do you think Belgium can do better this year?

It was a dissappointment for sure, especially because I played really bad in our consolation game against Turkey. I could’ve made the difference there, but I failed to do that. Against the USA I played really well, one of my greatest games ever, but even that ended in a loss.
After World Cup I worked a lot on playing against beaters who play more aggressive than me. I think our bad World Cup performance motivated our team a lot. Everyone wants to prove themselves now and show Europe that we can do better.

Imagine Belgium reaches the final, against whom would you like to play the final and why?

Against the UK. In 2015 we lost against them in the semi finals, so I really want to prove myself against them. I also love to play against their beaters so that would be the dream match-up for me.

Jérôme Noiret plays chaser for Liège Leviathans. This is the first time he's been called up for the national team.

Jérôme Noiret plays chaser for Liège Leviathans. This is the first time he’s been called up for the national team.

Hey Jérôme! This is the first time you’ve been selected for the Belgian national team, describe what went through your mind when you saw your name on that list.

I honestly couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw the news. I waited a couple of days to see if it wasn’t a mistake, but no! Everyone around me believed in my chances, but I didn’t really think I had a shot.

With your team, Liege Leviathans, you’ve reached the upper bracket at EQC, followed by a close loss to Paris Frog. Yet, the wider European quidditch community might not be familiar with your playing style. Tell us what qualities you can bring to the team?

First of all I have still a lot to learn. I think my speed is my biggest strength, I’m looking forward to use that in counter attacks or to move quickly behind the beaters. I’m also willing to play defensive seeker or even to seek whilst our main seekers have to rest. I feel like I also have a good connection with some of the players so that might give us an extra spark.

How have the practices been so far? Do you feel any differences between practicing with your home team? Have you learned a lot while playing with the best players of Belgium?

I learned and learn more and more with the gryffins. I’m feeling really stronger, better structure in the game,… I need more vision, but in fact, i feel a big difference when I play with my home team.

Belgium is aiming for nothing but gold this year. Tell us why you feel that this is a realistic goal?

We’ve great players. All of us are really motivated and are aiming this. We are going to show to everyone that we can fight for the 1st place, and fly !