Home Olympics 2016 Rio Sports Swimming

Catching up with our Olympians: Matthew Mark Meyer

This young 18 year old Olympian and matric student from Clifton College is a man of focus, much wisdom for his youth and has so many interesting facets. He qualified for the Rio Olympics for the 1500m freestyle, amidst the nausea, pain and burn that confirmed his sure victory. He speaks with deep gratefulness for the brilliant guidance and support of his Coach Alisdair Hatfield, his dear ones in his life and says “One day, if I could say I turned out to be half the man Alisdair is then I would be proud of who I have become”. Matthew is such a mature and inspirational youth that will do SA proud, come this Rio Olympics.

When asked about himself he said “Well to be honest I’m some sort of a strange blend of a person really. I’m somewhere between an introvert and an extrovert but if you get to know me I think the extrovert may come out. I love to stay active, I can’t sit still at all and wherever I go there has to be something physical that I can do. Often that isn’t too much of a problem as I have to swim no matter where I go but if by some strange reason I don’t, then I will find something to do. Loyalty, it’s a quality I have prided myself on for many years and I feel that it is always the starting block when journeying to be the person you truly want to be”.

Matthew Meyer

Matthew Meyer

Photo Credits: Brian-Spurr-Photography

Athlete: Bio / Stats

Name & Surname Matthew Mark Meyer
Nick Name Matt
Date of birth 4 March 1998
Place of birth Durban (Parklands Hospital)
Current City Durban South Africa
Height 185cm
Weight 70kgs
Shoe Size 10/11
Club Action Swim Academy
Coach’s Name Alisdair Hatfield
Out of Country events Singapore Junior World Swimming Championship
Favorite City Cape Town
Favorite Song/ type of music I won’t go home without you by Maroon 5
Favorite Movie Tarzan (Animation)
Highschool Clifton College
Grade 12
Sponsors Speedo
Twitter and Instagram names, facebook name Instagram; matthewmeyer_

Facebook; Matthew Meyer

Parents Names, siblings Charles Meyer – Father | Wendy Meyer – Mother | Tracy-Lea Meyer – Sister |



Q: You have just realized a lifelong dream to qualify for the Rio Olympics. Wow and well done. What is on your heart and mind right now concerning this qualification?

Thank-you so much! For the first few days it was really just a matter of trying to soak it all in. It was hard to believe that I had finally accomplished a lifelong dream. It has been a goal of mine for some years now. After I started to realize what I had done I, at the same time, knew I had to get back into the pool and train harder than ever as there are bigger goals still to come.

Q: Respecting and being grateful for the journey that you, your parents and coaches have been on till now. Also for the benefit and encouragement of young and up-coming little dreamers that see you as a hero – how was your swimming performances at about age 13/14? What was your regime like at that age?

It’s been a long journey for us all however; I only really believe that we’ve reached a halfway point. I have been in the sport for 10 years straight with no breaks in between and am hoping to reach my 10 thousand hours in the pool soon as I feel this is the point where I’ll be at my peak. At the age of 13/14 I was really just trying to reach one goal, breaking my first age group record. I was unsuccessful until the age of 15 where a broke records on 5 different occasions throughout the year. The main aim of those years from my coach’s perspective was just getting the mileage and hard training in to set me up for the future.

Q: Why do you have such deep seated respect for your coach?

Alisdair is my life mentor, be it swimming, academics or life in general. He has helped me through a lot of ups and downs in my life and never lost faith in me throughout the journey so far. Alisdair is integral, honest and an inspiration to me.


Matthew Meyer

Matthew Meyer

Photo Credits: Brian-Spurr-Photography

Q: Would you like to share a little bit more about your faith journey and how it has affected your life / sports?

My faith ensures a safe, healthy and happy day to day life for my family and those who are dear to me. I am eternally grateful for all I have and all I am.

Q: Beside swimming, what else do you have a passion for?

My family and girlfriend. For me there is nothing better than a weekend consisting of a family lunch, a day well spent with my girlfriend and possibly a mornings worth of fishing with my dad. This refreshes my mind every week and reminds me how lucky I am outside of the pool. It’s amazing to know I have the undying support of these people and really makes me strive to achieve to the best of my ability.

Q: What is your personal favourite motivational quote?

Do what you love and love what you do!!

Q: What was your biggest challenge leading up to Olympic Qualifiers, and how did you manage that challenge?

It was a matter of controlling my nerves. I tend to get quite nervous for some of my bigger races and it doesn’t help me in the pool unless I control it.

Q: In your opinion, how do you define greatness in life?

Doing what you love and being successful at it. The two go hand in hand, if you love what you do then you will be good at it. Stay passionate, positive and hardworking but most of all be the person you have always dreamed of being.


Q: What’s your WHY ? 

I do what I do because I love it. My path in swimming and academics is what it is because of hard work and dedication. My message to the youth is that nothing in life comes easy and unless you are willing to sacrifice and commit, then your dreams will forever remain a dream.

Q: One thing about Matthew that the world does not know

I love to listen to music from the Tarzan Animation before I race.

Q: Favourite meal?

Well this is a difficult one. My mom is an amazing cook and I really can’t pinpoint my favored dish what I do know is that they all belong to her. My favorites would be the Monday night breyani, lamb roast on weekends, prawn pasta on a special occasion as well as my dad’s specialty ribs. People wonder how I stay slim and to be honest I don’t know either…


NB – All images were supplied by the athlete to Heslop Sports. If there are any images that are not credited correctly, please email info@heslopsports.co.za with the details and we will gladly do so immediately.

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 you as you go from strength to strength. Blessings!

Brian Spurr Contact Details:

Facebook: Brian-Spurr-Photography

Cell: 082 553 2029

E:mail: brian.spurr@gmail.com

NB – All images were supplied by the athlete to Heslop Sports. If there are any images that are not credited correctly, please email info@heslopsports.co.za with the details and we will gladly do so immediately.

  • Subscribe to Blog via Email

    Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 788 other subscribers

  • Ad
  • Ad
%d bloggers like this:
Skip to toolbar