The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has selected table tennis ace Achanta Sharath Kamal and boxer Nikhat Zareen as India’s flag-bearers for the closing ceremony of the 2022 Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games.
An IOA statement said on Monday that gold medallists in wrestling and weightlifting too were considered to do the honours but the contingents had left for India after the conclusion of their events.
“A shortlist of flag-bearers was drawn up by IOA secretary-general Rajeev Mehta, acting president Anil Khanna, and India’s Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games chef de mission Rajesh Bhandari, with gold medallists from the wrestling and weightlifting teams also considered. The final decision was made by Mehta and Khanna. The fact that the wrestling and weightlifting teams have already left for India was also factored into the final stage of decision-making,” the IOA statement said.
IOA acting president Anil Khanna said, “It is with great pleasure we announce Achanta Sharath Kamal and Nikhat Zareen as our flag-bearers. Sharath has served table tennis brilliantly all these years and his medals, including a mixed doubles gold, at Birmingham 2022 speak of the class and quality he brings to the highest stage along with his longevity.
“Zareen, the reigning world champion and India’s gold medallist in the light flyweight boxing category at these Games is one of our best talents who continues to go from strength to strength, inspiring many, including young girls in India,” he added.