Coetzé looks unstoppable in water


Forget about Elandré’s for now Fire on the water hit; Pieter Coetzé is currently causing fire in the water!

The young South African swimming sensation won his fourth gold medal at the national championship in Gqeberha on Thursday and he also immediately swam two Olympic qualifying times.

To qualify for the 100 m backstroke event in Paris, swimmers must set a time of 53.74 s.

Well, Coetzé only completed the qualifying round in 53.05 s, after which he stormed to the title and gold medal with his time of 52.89 s.

Ruard van Renen was second with an effort of 54.50 s.

“I feel very good and I kept my fingers crossed that Ruard could also qualify for the Games. It would have been nice if both of us could have done it, but I know that he will manage,” said Coetzé.

“Ruard is very strong under the water and with the turning stroke I had to swim as fast as possible (to collect the gold medal).”

Earlier in the week, the Pretorian won an exciting 100 m freestyle race against Chad le Clos and Guy Brooks.

Coetzé’s winning time was 49.12 s, followed by Le Clos (49.34 s) and Brooks (49.42 s).

“I’m someone who likes to win, but this victory tastes so much sweeter with Chad and Guy who were also on their pieces,” said the Commonwealth gold medallist.

“I would have liked to set a 48-second time, but we didn’t have much rest in the run-up to the event. I have the Olympic Games in my sights and I’m in good spirits with my performance.”

Speaking of the Games – Coetzé (100m and 200m backstroke), Tatjana Smith (200m breaststroke) and Kaylene Corbett (200m breaststroke) achieved Olympic qualifying times in Gqeberha.

Coetzé’s gold medals at the SA championship:

50m backstroke, 100m freestyle, 200m backstroke and 100m backstroke.