Seychellois female volleyballer Marielle Bonne motivated by team’s success, personal achievement
Young Seychellois volleyball player Marielle Bonne recently won three individual prizes including the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award in the African Volleyball Confederation Zone 7 competition which took place in Mauritius. (Jude Morel, Seychelles News Agency)
(Seychelles News Agency) - Seychellois volleyballer Marielle Bonne has once again played an important role in the victory of her team ARSU, in the African Volleyball Confederation Zone 7 competition which took place in Mauritius earlier this month.
Coming from the district of Anse Royale in the south of the main island Mahe, Bonne has achieved some amazing results during her 13-year volleyball career.
In the Zone 7 competition, Bonne won three individual prizes including the Most Valuable Player (MVP) award.
SNA caught up with the 25-year Bonne upon her return to the Seychelles, a group of 115 islands in the western Indian Ocean.
SNA: How did your volleyball career start?
MB: I did not like volleyball at first. I preferred netball. It was only after my coach said I will not go far in netball, I went to my first volleyball training and that was in 2003.
SNA: Your mum (Jerina Bonne) is also a well known volleyball player. Is that an advantage for you?
MB: When I was playing netball and every-one was trying to push me in volleyball, they kept saying my mum is a good player so you can be one too. I did not believe I could reach the level that I am today. My mum encourages not only me but everyone in the team. She helps us stay focused.
SNA: What does a player need to become a good volleyballer?
MB: A lot of patience and the ability to listen. When I started it was what I did. I learned to listen and developed a liking for a sport. I had to learn the basic before being able to join the team. Today I am proud of where I am and what I have achieved. The young players nowadays have no patience. They want to become stars very quickly.
SNA: You have achieved something that not many players do in their career, playing at professional level in France. What was that like?
MB: I had to stop my secondary education in Seychelles to go to France and for the six years I was there, it was an interesting experience and very demanding both mentally and physically. The experiences I got I now use it when playing with ARSU.
SNA: Will you consider going back if you get the opportunity?
MB: I am getting opportunities to play at a professional level but up to now I have not accepted any offers. I came back because I was homesick, so I am thinking carefully about whether I will do it again.
SNA: Your club ARSU is one of the top female clubs in the country. To what do you attribute ARSU’s success?
MB: I think we have a great team spirit. We are always together in and out of matches. We motivate each other into playing to the best of our ability. The young players when they join understand that close relationship.
SNA: What have you appreciated more in your volleyball career?
MB: All my achievements -- like the ones I won recently. I feel proud especially when people question how I can perform when they consider my weight. I came back from the Zone 7 competition with three individual prizes and this shows that I still performing at a high level. Volleyball involves a lot of thinking and technique and weight does not really play a role. Like our coach always tell us, you control the ball -- not the other way around.
SNA: What keeps you motivated as a volleyball player?
MB: Knowing that we can win a high level competition. I am very happy when my team wins not only a match but a competition. It shows that we are progressing. The next thing I like is the challenge -- I love challenges and every competition poses one for me. When I am on the court I am focused on playing my best and winning the match. When I lose a match I will cry all night.
SNA: How do you see volleyball in Seychelles?
MB: I feel that the level of play is going down. Although there are many young people in the sports today the motivation to give the best is lacking. Today many young are more interested in what people are saying about them than focusing on their game. It is important that when you are playing you are focused on the game.