Abhinav Bindra to be India's flagbearer at Rio Olympics

It is reliably learnt that the IOA will officially write a letter to the 33-year-old shooter for his confirmation.

Former World and Olympic champion Abhinav Bindra has accepted the honour of carrying the national flag in the opening ceremony of the Olympics on August 5, in Rio de Janeiro.

The Beijing Games gold medallist, the 32-year-old Bindra who will be appearing in his fifth straight Olympics, had politely declined the request to carry the flag at the London Olympics as it was too close to his event.

‘’Yes, I have accepted. It is my last Games. Was going to go to the opening ceremony in any case’’, said Bindra when contacted by Sportstar, on his response for the Indian Olympic Association’s request to be the flag-bearer for the Rio Games.

Bindra, who had carried the national flag in the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in 2010, had always been sceptical about attending the opening ceremonies as they clashed with his air rifle event that is always held early. It would be a different case this time.

‘’Since no training is possible on August 6, there is a good chance for recovery. So, it does not hamper my preparations’’, reasoned Bindra, whose event is scheduled for August 8.

In his reply to the IOA’s letter from secretary general Rajeev Mehta, Bindra wrote back on Friday, ‘’It will be my greatest honour to be the flag bearer of the Indian contingent participating in the XXXI Olympic Games. I hereby give my formal consent’’.

As the youngest participant, competing on a hardship quota in the Sydney Olympics in 2000, when he missed the final by one point, Bindra has indeed come a long way.

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