Kelly Sildaru one of Estonia's Winter Olympic opening ceremony flag-bearers

Kelly Sildaru.
Kelly Sildaru. Source: ERR

Freestyle skier Kelly Sildaru and cross-country skier Martin Himma are Estonia's official flag-bearers at the opening ceremony of the XXIV Winter Olympics in Beijing on Friday.

Sidlaru, 19, who recently triumphed again in the X-Games in the U.S., the competition where she first shot to prominence as a 13-year-old, said was very happy with the news. "I'm glad the flag will be in my hands and I'm glad I can carry it with Martin"

Himma 22, trevealed that his coach Kalju Ojaste had advised him to dress as warmly as possible for the event

"He's also been a flag-bearer at the Olympics (at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan – ed.) and gave a few tips," Himma said.

"I was already very proud to be taking part in the Olympics. Being a flag-bearer is an even prouder thing," Himma went on.

The Winter Olympics run from February 4 to 20.

An overview of the composition, schedule and results of the Estonian team (in Estonian) can be found (in Estonian) here.

Several of Estonia's athletes have tested positive for Covid in the run-up to the games, most recently biathlete Kristjan Ilves. The competitors would need to return negative on two successive Covid tests to gain entry.

President Alar Karis, Prime Minister Kaja Kallas and, so far as is known, no other government ministers will be attending the opening ceremony, part of a wider boycott relating to concerns over human rights issues in, for instance, the Xinjiang region in the far north-west of the country, and other concerns.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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