After a last minute change in Tokyo New Zealand’s flag bearers, Sarah Hirini and David Nyika, have led our team of 211 strong athletes into the 25th Olympics at the Opening Ceremony.
The New Zealand flag bearers were supposed to be Hirini and Bond. However, after finding out that the men’s rowing eight were racing on Saturday morning, Hamish Bond was forced into stepping down from his position to prepare for his rowing race the next morning.
Bond was very disappointed that he had to do this but he said that he went to Tokyo to compete and he is going to put that first.
The decision was made by Chef de Mission Rob Waddell to put in two-time commonwealth winner David Nyika in Bonds shoes. Nyika says that it is a great privilege to be a NZ flag bearer and, although, filling Hamish bonds shoes will be a big ask, I’m up for it.
This is the first time that New Zealand have had two representatives to carry out New Zealand’s flag. This is because there was a change in the Olympic games rules, allowing to have both Male and Female flag bearers.
Both Hirini and Nyika have been very grateful to have the privilege to carry New Zealand’s Flag and represent their country, family, and sport that they love.
David Nyika is a two-time commonwealth gold medallist boxer. He competed in the 2017 and 2019 world championships as a New Zealand professional boxer. Nyika began his boxing journey as a 18-year-old at the Glasgow commonwealth games. In the 202- Tokyo Olympics David Nyika will be competing in the heavyweight division.
Sarah Hirini is a New Zealand Rugby union player who is the captain of the Black fern sevens rugby team. Hirini is a well known woman in the recognition of women’s rugby in New Zealand. She has led the Black Ferns to two rugby world cup sevens victories, an Olympic games silver medal, and a commonwealth Gold medal. Most People recognise Hirini as a strong leader and a fantastic role model. She was the women’s player of the year at the 2017 New Zealand Rugby awards.