Both athletes have been in fine fettle in the ongoing Commonwealth Games 2022.

The Indian Olympic Association (IOA) has selected paddler Mr Achanta Sharath Kamal and boxer Ms Nikhat Zareen as Team India’s flagbearers for the Closing Ceremony of the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games scheduled for August 8.

A shortlist of flag bearers was drawn up by IOA Secretary General Mr Rajeev Mehta, Acting President Mr Anil Khanna, and Team India’s Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games Chef de Mission Mr Rajesh Bhandari, with gold medallists from the wrestling and weightlifting teams also considered. The final decision was made by Mr Mehta and Mr Khanna. The fact that the wrestling and weightlifting teams have already left for India was also factored into the final stage of decision-making.

IOA Acting President Mr Anil Khanna: “It is with great pleasure we announce Mr Achanta Sharath Kamal and Ms Nikhat Zareen as our flagbearers for the Commonwealth Games 2022 closing ceremony. Sharath has served table tennis brilliantly all these years and his medals, including a mixed doubles gold, at Birmingham 2022 speak of the class and quality he brings to the highest stage along with his longevity.

“Ms Zareen, the reigning world champion and Team India’s gold medallist in the light flyweight boxing category at these Games is one of our best talents who continues to go from strength to strength, inspiring many, including young girls in India.”

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Two-time Olympics medallist and now Commonwealth Games singles champion PV Sindhu and Indian men’s hockey team captain Manpreet Singh were the flagbearers for the opening ceremony.

Nikhat Zareen clinched the gold medal in the women’s Light Flyweight (50KG) boxing bout beating Northern Ireland’s Carly McNaul in the final on Sunday. Sharath Kamal, on the other hand, has been on a roll at the Commonwealth Games 2022. He has already clinched three medals in the ongoing edition and will also play the Table Tennis men’s singles final later on Monday.

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