The Belgium captain barely puts a foot wrong whenever he dons the Red Lions shirt and 2016 was no exception. John-John Dohmen led his team to a silver medal at the Rio Olympics, the first medal the Belgium men’s hockey team has won since 1920.
A year earlier, Dohmen, who has more than 330 caps for his country, led Belgium to a silver medal at the Hero Hockey World League Final and just a few months earlier, the Red Lions had qualified for Rio courtesy of a second place finish at the Fintro Hockey World League Semi-Final.
“I’m very proud to win this most beautiful award as an individual in world hockey,” said the three-time Olympian. “This trophy is something special because it’s a historical moment for Belgian hockey. It’s just amazing because when I started as an international player, my dream was simply to touch the pitch at an Olympic Games.
"Year after year, our dreams have become bigger and higher. This award will remind me all my life that, if you work hard and continue to believe in what you are doing, you can reach more than your dreams. I would like to thank my team mates, my family and my wife for helping me every day to be a better player and a better man.”
And in a tribute to his teammate Arthur van Doren, who collected the award for U23 Player of the Year, Dohmen added: “I congratulate my friend and team mate Arthur Van Doren for his trophy. It is well deserved and not a surprise for me because I think he is already one of the best players in the world. This little genius is growing fast and will be the key player of Belgium for the coming years. It just a pleasure to play with this kind of player.”