Dirk Nowitzki Named German Flag-bearer in Olympic Opener

Brittni O'RyanContributor IAugust 5, 2008

Fans voices were heard! Nowitzki to carry German flag.

Basketball star Dirk Nowitzki will be Germany's flag-bearer in the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympics, the German National Olympic Committee (DOSB) announced on Wednesday.

"We chose him because he represents the Olympic idea like no other athlete. It has been a dream of Dirk Nowitzki for years to be at the Olympics. This dream has now become reality," said Germany's mission chef in Beijing, Michael Vesper.

"A global star demonstrates that it is a career highlight to compete with athletes from around the world and from many sports. This sends a signal and makes him a great role model for young athletes."

Nowitzki, 30, helped Germany qualify for the Olympics less than two weeks ago at a qualifying tournament in Athens.

The Dallas Mavericks star became the first player from Europe last year to win the NBA's prestigious Most Valuable Player award. He led Germany to second place at the 2005 European Championships and to third place at the 2002 World Championship.

Nowitzki will join an elite group of athletes chosen as flag bearers during the parade of 205 nations at the Olympic opening ceremony on Friday in Beijing's National Stadium.

So proud of you DIRK! Viel Gluck!