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Biography

NEETHLING Ryk

Nationality Republic of South Africa Flag RSA Republic of South Africa
Birth Date 17/11/1977
Gender Men
Height (m / in) 1.96/6'5''
Weight (kg / lbs) 0/0
Events Inscribed   Aquatics Swimming Men's 50m Freestyle
Aquatics Swimming Men's 100m Freestyle
Aquatics Swimming Men's 200m Freestyle
Aquatics Swimming Men's 50m Butterfly
Aquatics Swimming Men's 200m Individual Medley
Member of Republic of South Africa Aquatics Swimming Men's 4x100m Freestyle Relay
Member of Republic of South Africa Aquatics Swimming Men's 4x100m Medley Relay
Medals Won SILVER Medal SILVER -  Men's 100m Freestyle

Date Venue Event Country - Name Results Status
17 Mar
10:00
SAS Men's 50m Butterfly
Heat 05
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk Completed
17 Mar
11:20
SAS Men's 200m Freestyle
Heat 04
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk (2) 1:48.88 Completed
17 Mar
20:16
SAS Men's 200m Freestyle
Final A
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk (6) 1:48.77 Completed
18 Mar
10:24
SAS Men's 100m Freestyle
Heat 05
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk (2) 50.19 Completed
18 Mar
19:23
SAS Men's 100m Freestyle
Semifinal 02
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk (3) 49.43 Completed
19 Mar
19:28
SAS Men's 100m Freestyle
Final A
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk (2) 49.20 Completed
20 Mar
10:00
SAS Men's 50m Freestyle
Heat 06
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk (2) 22.80 Completed
20 Mar
11:45
SAS Men's 200m Individual Medley
Heat 03
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk Completed
20 Mar
19:50
SAS Men's 50m Freestyle
Semifinal 02
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk (4) 22.70 Completed
21 Mar
19:02
SAS Men's 50m Freestyle
Final A
Republic of South Africa Flag RSA  - NEETHLING Ryk (7) 22.65 Completed

Place Of Birth Bloemfontein, South Africa
Residence Johannesburg, South Africa
Marital Status Single
Occupation Student
International Debut 1993
Coach Frank Busch
Idol Matt Biondi, Lance Armstrong
Recent Results Telstra FINA World Cup (2005)
1st in the 50m Freestyle (21.69)
1st in the 100m Freestyle (47.04)
1st in the 200m Freestyle (1:43.97)
1st in the 100m IM (51.81)

FINA World Championships (Montreal, July-2005)
18th in the 50m Freestyle (22.68)
3rd in the 100m Freestyle (48.34)
3rd in the 200m Freestyle (1:46.63)
4th in the 50m Butterfly (23.48)
Commonwealth
Games History
Melbourne 2006
Gold in the 4x100m Freestyle Relay (3:14.97)
new Commonwealth Games record.

Manchester 2002
4th in the 50m Freestyle (22.49)
Bronze in the 100m Freestyle (49.71)
Silver in the 4x100m Freestyle relay (3:18.86)
4th in the 4x100m medley relay (3:39.02)

Kuala Lumpur 1998
6th in the 200m Freestyle (1:57.17)
5th in the 400m Freestyle (3:51.41)
2nd in the 1500m Freestyle (15:02.88)

Victoria 1994
9th in the 400m Freestyle (3:58.60)
7th in the 1500m Freestyle (15:42.72)
5th in the 4x200m Freestyle relay (7:42.28)
Olympic
Games History
Athens 2004
4th in the 100m Freestyle (48.63)
Gold in the 4x100m Freestyle relay (3:13.17 - WR)

Sydney 2000
8th in the 400m Freestyle (3:48.52)
5th in the 1500m Freestyle (15:00.48)

Atlanta 1996
11th in the 400m Freestyle (3:54.34)
5th in the 1500m Freestyle (15:14.63)
Other At the age of six, Ryk started taking water safety lessons after a near fatal drowning incident at a neighbour's house and immediately took to the water.

In 1995 at the age of 17, several colleges began recruiting Ryk for swimming scholarships - at this stage, he had never visited the US and barely spoke English.

When he was young, Ryk quickly became a national force in the age groups but international sanctions due to the apartheid always put a damper on South African athlete's celebrations and dreams. He was unable to compete in any international competitions because of these sanctions, and therefore attended American universities to compete against the best in the world.

During his career at the University of Arizona, his success was unparalleled. He was a nine-time NCAA National Champion (second most in history), he was voted the Arizona Athlete of the Year and PAC-10 Swimmer of the Year for four consecutive years, and in 1999 the NCAA named him the Swimmer of the Year, which is the highest honour in intercollegiate swimming.

Ryk then began participating in international competition for the country of South Africa in 1993 and continued throughout his career at Arizona.

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