Nick Willis announced as Kiwi flag bearer
Fri, 27 Jul 2012 7:10a.m.
By 3 News online staff
Nick Willis has been named as the New Zealand flag bearer for the opening ceremony of the London Olympics.
The 29-year-old middle-distance runner won a silver medal in the 1500m race four years ago in Beijing.
He recently told 3 News that he is feeling better prepared and in better shape this time round, and is aiming for the top of the podium.
“It just feels like the moment for something special to happen,” he says.
Today’s announcement was made at a black tie dinner in London hosted by Governor-General Jerry Mateparae.
Prior to the announcement New Zealand chef de mission Dave Currie was only giving away a few hints.
“Generally [we’re] looking for someone who has performed well at Olympic level in the past, is likely to do well this time around, but somebody who embodies all those qualities that you want to go behind them into battle.”
Defending Olympic shot put champion Valerie Adams would have been an obvious choice - but she doesn't arrive into London until two days before her event on August 6, and was unlikely to change her schedule.
Four years ago in Beijing Mahe Drysdale carried the flag, despite competing the next day.
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