Australian Hockey Captain Mark Knowles has been announced as Australia’s Flag Bearer for the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony.
Knowles pipped much-loved Gold Coaster Sally Pearson, who was initially dubbed as the front runner for the honour.
Australian Team Chef de Mission Steve Moneghetti made the announcement in front of more than 1000 team members and guests at The Star Gold Coast on Monday night.
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A born and bred Queenslander from Rockhampton, Mr Moneghetti said Knowles was an ideal choice to carry the flag.
“This is a real leadership role within the Australian Team and there is no doubt Mark has been one of Australia’s leading captains over a long period of time,” Moneghetti said.
“Mark is an outstanding athlete with a decorated playing career that includes three consecutive Commonwealth Games gold medals. But above all else he is just a genuine and outstanding person.”
The 34 year-old said he was overwhelmed by the honour.
“This is amazing. I grew up playing a sport I absolutely love on the grass fields of Rockhampton and I stand here now in front of this group of absolute stars,” he said.
“It means everything to me.”
The Gold Coast 2018 Opening Ceremony will be held on Wednesday April 4 at Carrara Stadium.