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Laura Dijkema with the orange jersey at the 2022 World Championship

Laura Dijkema, the star setter of the Netherlands’ national team, is about to join CBF Balducci HR Macerata and compete in the Lega Pallavolo Serie A1 Femminile again. The 32-year-old playmaker is set to join her new club on December 6, returning to the Italian league for the first time in two years.

· Watch all Lega Pallavolo Serie A1 matches live or on demand on Volleyball TV.

During the previous two seasons, Dijkema played in Russia. She won the 2021 national title and Best Setter nomination in the Russian Superliga as a player of Lokomotiv Kaliningrad, before transferring to Leningradka Saint Petersburg. Before that, she competed for Il Bisonte Firenze in Italy for three seasons between 2017 and 2020, after spending a season and winning the Italian title with Igor Gorgonzola Novara.

In her club career, the 1.84m-tall Dutch playmaker has also triumphed as a national champion and earned Best Setter awards in the Netherlands and Germany, and spent a season in the Turkish league. With the national team, she picked up a 2016 FIVB Volleyball World Grand Prix bronze and two CEV European Championship silvers. She also helped the Netherlands reach the semifinals at both the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and the 2018 FIVB Volleyball Women’s World Championship, and was part of the Dutch team that played co-host to this year’s edition of the World Championship.

“I am very happy about the opportunity to play in Italy again. I can say I feel at home there and I also enjoy the high level of the Italian championship,” Dijkema told the club’s official website hrvolley.it. “When Macerata offered me to come, I had a good feeling about it, so I said to myself, ‘yes, let's go!’”

The club from Macerata is a newcomer to Italy’s top division. In their first season, the Orange-and-Blacks currently stand 13th on a 2-8 win-loss ratio and five points.

“The goal will be to try and stay in Serie A1 and I will make all my energy, positivity and experience available to the team,” Dijkema added. “I followed the team’s match against Bergamo last Sunday and I saw an ambience of passion and a great desire to fight on the court. And I was pleased to see the final celebrations for the victory. I can't wait to get started. I'm waiting for all the fans dressed in orange in the hall. It is obviously a colour I love very much because it reminds me of my national team's shirt.”

CBF Balducci HR Macerata vs Volley Bergamo 1991 3-2 (25-18, 25-18, 19-25, 16-25, 15-13): match highlights