Sports

Facts about shirtless Tonga flagbearer in Olympics

For the Tokyo Olympics this summer season, For The Win helps you get to know a number of the star Olympians competing on the world’s greatest stage. Main as much as the Opening Ceremony, we’re highlighting 23 athletes in 23 days. Up subsequent up is Pita Taufatofua.

He was a star of the 2016 Summer time Olympics. He was again for the 2018 Video games as a winter athlete.

And now, Pita Taufatofua is again, as soon as once more, this time for the Tokyo Olympics.

The Tongan athlete certified in taekwondo for his third consecutive Olympics, so we’ll see if we get a 3rd straight have a look at Taufatofua carrying the flag for his nation.

Earlier than that occurs, listed below are some enjoyable information.

READ MORE FROM OUR TOKYO OLYMPICS 23 in 23 SERIES HERE.

In 2016, he certified as a Taekwondo athlete and carried the flag for his native Tonga.

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(AP Photograph/Matt Slocum)

He was again for 2018, qualifying for cross-country snowboarding:

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(AP Photograph/Petr David Josek)

And in 2020, he won an Olympic qualifier for taekwondo again.

He completed last in his kayaking debut in 2019. Then, final yr, accidents led to a setback, and as he posted on Instagram final month, “sadly due largely to journey restrictions I used to be unable to journey to the Kayak qualifier in Siberia Russia.”

However he already certified in taekwondo.

The Guardian had the story in 2019:

He went rogue, flagrantly disobeying officers who mentioned “please simply put on the go well with”, hid a ta’ovala (Tongan mat which is wrapped across the waist) in his backback, nipped out the again and put it on simply earlier than the present acquired began, coated himself in oil, and by the point he had handed the 1000’s of individuals lining the streets on the best way to the stadium he was going viral. …

Taufatofua says he was simply making an attempt to characterize his nation by sporting its conventional costume. “I used to be representing 1,000 years of historical past. We didn’t have fits and ties once we traversed the Pacific Ocean.”

There you will have it.

Get to know Pita Taufatofua: 5 facts about Team Tonga’s flagbearer and taekwondo star

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