Closing Ceremonies 2012: Latest Buzz on Flag-Bearers
It is a considerable honor to be named the country's flag-bearer during the closing ceremonies of the Olympics, an event celebrating the great achievements of the world's greatest athletes.
One of the great traditions that began during the Melbourne Games in 1956 is the procession of the flag-bearers of each nation, followed by all the athletes of each country arriving as a collective whole. After all, despite the competitive nature of athletics, isn't this what the Olympics are all about?
The closing ceremonies are definitely going to be an event to witness. And with performances from myriad British music artists, from The Who to Tinie Tempah and George Michael to Jessie J, we can't forget that this is celebrating the fantastic performances from the past two weeks.
Let's take a look at who has received the distinct honor of carrying their country's flag.
Bryshon Nellum, United States
Selected by other members of the U.S. Olympic team, Bryshon Nellum, who competed in the men's 4x400-meter relay and the open 400-meter, will carry the U.S. flag during the closing ceremonies. Nellum ran the first leg in the 4x400-meter relay in which the U.S. placed second and also made the semifinals in the 400-meter dash.
Nellum "embodies the Olympic spirit," according to U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun, via Foxsports.com. The track and field star was shot in the legs as a freshman at USC, but was able to make a full recovery in the next few years to compete in the 2012 Summer Olympic Games.
Canadian women's soccer star, Christine Sinclair, will be representing her country. Sinclair led the Canadian women to the bronze medal in women's soccer after a heartbreaking loss to the U.S. in the semifinal game, losing 4-3 on a last second goal by U.S. forward Alex Morgan. Canada defeated France 1-0 in the bronze-medal game.
Sinclair led all goal-scorers in the Olympics, netting six goals, including a hat trick in the semifinal game against the U.S.
Ben Ainslie, Great Britain
Winning his fourth consecutive gold medal in sailing, Ben Ainslie will be carrying the host British flag during the closing ceremonies.
Ainslie won gold in the Finn class in the 2012 Games to decorate himself as the most successful Olympic sailor of all time. He won gold at the Sydney (Laser class), Athens (Finn class) and Beijing (Finn class) Olympics and added a fourth gold at Weymouth.
His first medal came at the age of 19, placing second in the Laser class for a silver medal at the Atlanta Games in 1996.
Malcolm Page, Australia
Competing in his final Olympics, Malcolm Page will close it out in style, holding the Australian flag in his hands.
Page won the gold medal in the 470 class in Weymouth at the 2012 Games with his sailing partner Mathew Belcher. He won the same event four years ago in Beijing.
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