This is a special “send -off” and BON COURAGE post for one of our Heslop Sports Athletes, champion swimmer, Olympian, friend – HENDRIK VAN DER MERWE. All the best to Hendrik and the ENTIRE TEAM SA, as you represent South Africa proudly at the IPC Swimming World Champs in Glasgow organized by the International Paralympic Swimming Committee.
The SA SQUAD consists of: Men – Hendrik Herbst, Kevin Paul, Achmat Hassiem, Johann van Heerden, Challis Wright, Hendrik van der Merwe and James Bezuidenhout. Women – Emily Gray, Adri Visser and Beth Nothling.
See more at: http://www.sascoc.co.za/2015/05/30/sa-team-announced-for-2015-ipc-swimming-world-championships/#sthash.QYsG3vqM.dpuf
Van der Merwe says this about himself: “By reaching the highest level of sport in South Africa, in spite of being a paraplegic, I have proven exceptional dedication and commitment in everything I do. My extensive achievements as a professional sportsman provide evidence of my motivation. Preparing for participation at International level has taught me that giving up is not an option, and I have incorporated this approach in my personal and professional life. I’m a highly competitive person, a fast learner, and I have the ability to adapt quickly to changes in my environment”.
These are some of Hendrik’s Special Achievements
Swimming 2005: • Won silver and bronze in England swimming championships. • Broke five under 17 SA records at the South African Disabled Championships.
Swimming 2006: • Broke two SA Senior Records • Awarded senior Protea colors • Participated in Senior IPC World Championships (reached finals in the 100m breaststroke event)
Swimming 2007: • Awarded junior Protea colors. • Chosen for the preliminary squad representing South Africa in the Beijing Paralympic games.
Swimming 2010: • Chosen for the South African team in the IPC World Championships in Netherland.
Swimming 2012: • No.1 on world rankings for 50m breaststroke • No.5 on world rankings for 100m breaststroke • Qualified for the 2012 London paralympic games, and selected for the South African squad
Swimming 2013: • No.2 on world rankings for 50m breaststroke • No.7 on world rankings for 100m breaststroke • Selected for RSA senior squad to represent South Africa at the ipc world championships in Montreal Canada
Total swimming awards at point of publication: • 73 medals: 36gold, 21silver, 16 bronze.