Alex Rose overjoyed to be selected Samoa’s flag bearer at Tokyo Olympics

Being selected to carry Samoa’s flag at the opening ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics, means a lot to discus thrower Alex Rose and his parents.

The 29-year-old relayed the news to his parents soon after he told that he will lead Team Samoa carrying the nation’s flag on Friday.

“I was just over joyed. The first thing I did was call my parents and I talked to my father, it really truly meant a lot to him. Clearly growing up in Samoa and culture being so engraved inside of him. I think there’s a certain level of pride that every Samoan has for the country,” he said in a video interview by ONOC.

The thought of marching and playing in front of no spectators and empty stadium has not dampened Rose’s spirit.

“I am so blessed to have the opportunity. It doesn’t matter if the stands are full or empty, just carrying that flag and being able to walk around the stadium really means a lot to me.”

Comparing himself to his Tongan brother Pita Taufatofua, Rose confirmed he will be marching with his shirt on while carrying the Samoan flag.

He was referring to internet sensation and Tonga’s flagbearer in the 2016 Olympics, Taufatofua who appeared shirtless.    

“While I be carrying the flag, I will be doing it with my shirt on. Maybe I looked too good as Pita having my shirt off but you won’t see anything like that from me, unfortunately.”

Rose is one of 10 athletes set to represent Samoa at the Olympics, with only international-based athletes competing for the nation.

“I am overjoyed to hear that they have selected me and my goal is to not let my country down and I will support Samoa and represent them with pride in the games,” Rose said.