Coetzee competed for the New York Breakers in the ISL U.S. derby match in College Park, Maryland. “That was pretty exciting,” he said. “It was the first weekend for me to be a part of it in Maryland. The hype was pretty big.” He was also thrilled to work with Tina Andrew as the team’s General Manager, as well as Peter Andrew as Head Coach. “They are awesome. It was good seeing them all,” he said. This past summer, Coetzee competed in the men’s 100 meter butterfly at the 2019 World Aquatics Championships in Gwangju, South Korea. “Gwangju was a lot of fun. Although I had a tough week, due to some medical reasons, it was a part of the job. It happens to everyone, you live with it and you move forward,” he said. For young and aspiring swimmers, he said, “Definitely try and find a way to make it work. There will be a lot of times when it doesn’t look good or it feels like you are not going in the right direction. You need to sit down and be self-aware of your strengths and weaknesses, and you need to keep going forward.” Each day, Coetzee is motivated by the goals that he sets for himself. “You have some cool dreams as a kid, such as going to the Olympics,” he said. On his future plans, he said, “I am training for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 with my coach in Tennessee. Then, I will go back to South Africa for Trials in April. I will be racing the U.S. open this week for some fun. It is exciting.” For his fans and supporters, he said, “I appreciate them a lot. Everybody has had their own part in my journey, and everyone knows that. Everyone is very much appreciated.” Coetzee defined the word success as “really making sure I move forward, especially when things get tough, rather than just giving up.” “Success is finding ways to get better. I am just trying to do the job better than I did yesterday,” he said. To learn more about South African swimmer Ryan Coetzee, follow him on Instagram.
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