— Published 6 July 2021

France chose its flag bearers

Porte drapeaux Tokyo 2020

It’s done. France has chosen its flag bearers for the opening ceremonies of the Tokyo Games. Following the recommendations of the IOC, the National Olympic Committee (CNOSF) has appointed a male-female duo. For the Olympic Games, the French delegation will be led by five-time world champion judoka Clarisse Agbegnenou and gymnast Samir Ait-Saïd, who returned to the highest level after breaking his leg at the Rio 2016 Games. The two athletes succeed judoka Teddy Riner, the French flag bearer at the Rio Games. They were nominated by “ambassadors” – two athletes per sports federation present at the Games – in a vote organised over the weekend. Eleven candidates were in the running: Clarisse Agbegnenou (judo), Johanne Defay (surfing), Sandrine Gruda (basketball), Maïva Hamadouche (boxing), Kristina Mladenovic (tennis), Mélina Robert-Michon (athletics) and Charline Picon (windsurfing) for the women; Samir Ait-Saïd (gymnastics), Maxime Beaumont (canoeing), Renaud Lavillenie (athletics) and Florent Manaudou (swimming) for the men. For the Paralympic Games, an online public vote was organised. At the end of the voting, which closed on June 30th, judoka Sandrine Martinet and tennis player Stéphane Houdet were chosen to carry the flag at the opening ceremony on August 24th in Tokyo.