Pierre Le Roux is SA’s most capped Water Polo Player, leader, captain, mentor, coach and so much more. Pierre, together with Head Coach Paul Martin and the rest of the SA Team, our “Black Mambas”, spit poison in Kazan this year at the Fina Championships when SA finished in 12th position, and added to this is their gold medal victory in the EU Nations Cup. An entire team of history makers! This gives hope, inspires a nation and can really be seen as true a game changer in the big scheme of things in this wonderful sport.
Pierre has clearly put in his 10 000 hours a few times over in this sport, and of course this results in his Water Polo matery. He was part of Team Gauteng since the age of 12 and have been selected ever since to represent SA. Sports excellence strongly runs in the family with Pierre being inspired and surrounded by his brilliantly talented family members, Etienne, Monique and Jean Le Roux.
Athlete: Bio / Stats
|Name & Surname||Pierre Le Roux|
|Date of birth||12 December 1985|
|Place of birth||Johannesburg, South Africa|
|Current City||Johannesburg, South Africa|
|Coach / Team Manager||Vladimir Trninic|
|Out of Country events||FINA World Championships (Montreal, Rome, Barcelona, Argentina (U20) and Kazan),
Commonwealth Games 2006 and several other tournaments in Casablanca, Egypt, Australia, Denmark and Kazakhstan
|Secondary Sport||Tennis and Soccer|
|Favorite City||Cape Town|
|Favorite Song||Everything – music lover|
|Favorite Movie||Forrest Gump|
|Tertiary Institution||University of Johannesburg and UNISA|
|Tertiary degree||BCom Sports Management, PGCE and BA Psychology|
|Twitter and Instagram, Facebook||Instagram: pierre0010
|Community projects||Crusaders Ladies Water Polo Club|
|Parents Names, siblings/ spouse||Etienne Le Roux – Current SA Water Polo Player
Jean Le Roux – Former SA Water Polo Player
Monique Le Roux – Gauteng A Ladies Water Polo Player
|Very briefly describe yourself as a person.||Sports passion. Love travelling and experiencing what life has to offer.|
Q: You are proudly our SA Men’s Water Polo Captain, one of our top goal scorers, passionate and doing brilliantly in Water Polo. Tell me a little bit about how you started in Water Polo, and your journey in the Water Polo arena up to now?
I was always a swimmer and when I joined my high school they offered water polo and that’s where it all began. I had a very passionate coach, Karl Niehaus that lit the fire that burns inside me now to do well for my team and country.
Q: To carry the joyous burden of captainship is an honour, and shows true leadership in and out of the water. What is your motto as a leader / captain and why?
Be open, be approachable, lead by example and always be willing to learn from those around you. Everyone has skills that can be used to improve a situation and everyone is around you for a reason, so never inhibit them.
Q: What is the highest accolade that Team SA has achieve in your time as captain?
Top 12 world ranking and a gold medal in a European tournament. A first in SA Water Polo history.
Q: You are also passionate and involved in coaching our precious youth, how is that going for you?
It’s become my life career. I love coaching young talented players and watching them grow. At the last FINA World championships, Nicholas Hock I actually coached at U15 and 1st Team level. So what a pleasure to see a player you helped produce reach the National team.
Q: Personally, do you have any specific regimens or rituals in the time leading up to a big game? Maybe a particular diet / training method that can be partially attributed to your success?
Eat well. Take care of your body. Listen to your body. Keep a strong mind and surround yourself with the right kind of people. A negative mind will never give you a positive result.
Q: I believe you are very strong on the mental side of the game / game prep, would you like to share a little about this?
It’s all about positivity and believing in your ability. Through hard work at training, this is made a lot easier because you know what you can do and where your limits are.
Q: Congratulations on Team SA’s achievements and performances at FINA World Championships recently in Kazan, what are your highlights of the latter?
A good win against Argentina in the opener of course, securing that top 12 finish and the 2nd game against Kazakhstan, showing how much we improved over the tournament.
Q: What is the one thing that you always bring back from each international Water Polo Meet / Championship?
I set myself goals each time to be competitive against the best players in the world. In my training I prepare to face them and after each tournament I evaluate where I need to improve my training and game play.
Q: How do you manage to fit in both sports and academics / job/ family into your schedule?
It is all about a balance. You need to train hard, but also have down time. You need to spend hours with your team mates in the pool but also time with your family. You need to find time for gym and swim every day but also to work and pay the bills. It’s an ongoing balancing act.
Q: Beside your Water Polo, what do you have a passion for?
I love to travel and I love to spend time with my family
Q: What do you do to relax?
I play a lot of tennis, soccer and relax with my family and friends.
Q: Which athlete/ athletes inspire you?
Roger Federer – no matter his age, always a gentleman and an athlete.
Q: What is your personal favourite motivational quote?
Everyone has limits…but not everyone accepts them
Q: You lived in abroad in France during the 2008/2009 season, pursuing your Water Polo. How did you experience that?
What a wonderful challenge and great experience to be a professional water polo player. It was tough in the beginning but once you adapt, an absolute treat to play and be treated like a pro.
Q: What is your biggest challenge, and what do you do to manage this challenge?
Keeping a balance in my life. It is an ongoing challenge, so always need to work at it
Q: When an athlete hits some “hard” / difficult patch in their sports career, what goes through your mind at that time? What advice can you give other Young Athletes in this regard?
Never be afraid to ask for help and let those that have faced hard times before guide you. In sport you have to trust, even more so in a team sport. So use those around you to alleviate the tough times and get you back on track.
Q: I’m sure you have many things going on right now, what’s to be expected next from you?
Keep pushing to get a team to the Olympic games…watch this space…
Thank you so much for taking this interview. We would like to wish you all the best for your journey ahead. We look forward to following your journey to Rio, as you and the team go from strength to strength. Blessings!