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Apart from her four Olympic titles, she won five European titles and 58 Dutch championships, and set or tied 12 world records – the last, pentathlon, in 1951 aged 33.
She retired from athletics in 1955, after which she became captain of the Dutch female track and field team.
In 1999, she was voted " Female Athlete of the Century " by the International Association of Athletics Federations ( IAAF ).
Her Olympic victories are credited with helping to demolish the convention that age and motherhood were a barrier to success in women's sport.

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