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Japan selects Rui Hachimura, Yui Susaki as flagbearers for Olympics

Japan selects Rui Hachimura, Yui Susaki as flagbearers for Olympics
Posted at 9:02 AM, Jul 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-05 12:39:52-04

Japan has selected its flagbearers for the Tokyo Olympics.

Carrying the Japanese flag for the Olympic host country will be none other than basketball star Rui Hachimura and two-time wrestling world champion Yui Susaki.

The Japanese Olympic Committee announced the selection of Hachimura and Susaki as the flagbearers on Monday.

This will be the first time in Olympic history that each participating country will include both a male and female athlete carrying the flag for the Opening Ceremony.

View social media post: https://twitter.com/Tokyo2020/status/1411983209114570752

Hachimura, 23, was born in Toyama, Japan and became the first Japanese player ever selected in the first round of the NBA Draft when he was picked by the Washington Wizards in 2019. Hachimura was named to the NBA All-Rookie Second Team for the 2019-20 season and has continued to play a key role for the Wizards since entering the NBA, averaging nearly 31 minutes and 5.8 rebounds per game.

Susaki, 22, is one of the top rising stars in freestyle wrestling. The Matsudo native already has a pair of world championships under her belt and is considered a top contender for the gold medal in the women's 50 kg division.

Alongside Hachimura and Susaki, 580 other athletes are expected to represent Japan at the Olympics — the largest turnout Japan has ever seen for the Games.