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 Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer

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Calliope
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PostSubject: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Wed Jan 13, 2010 11:44 am

"Takahashi to be Olympic Flag Bearer -- Official Annoucement in a Few Days"
http://www.chunichi.co.jp/chuspo/article/sports/news/CK2010011302000139.html

According to this article, the Japan Olympic Committee is considering Daisuke as a candidate to be the Olympic flag bearer. Actually, the article makes it sound like it's already been decided and just hasn't been officially announced, but other articles say that the JOC hasn't decided anything yet and will make an official annoucement after their meeting on the 14th. Other articles have mentioned athletes in skiing and speed skating as potential flag bearers, but they were very short and only said that it's a possibility, whereas whoever wrote this article sounds pretty convinced that Daisuke will be selected. It says that he's an ideal candidate since he has set records in skating and is a hope for an Olympic medal. In addition, he's one of the most popular figure skaters and is well-respected for his earnest and humble personality. The only worry is that the men's SP takes place four days after the opening ceremony, so being flagbearer might take a physical toll on him. But unlike in Torino, the ceremony will be held in an indoor arena so it shouldn't be that bad.

Again, this isn't official, and we should find out if it's true or not in another day or two. At any rate though, it seems pretty significant if is he being considered. I never even thought he would be a candidate, so I was pretty shocked when reading the article.
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PostSubject: Re: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Wed Jan 13, 2010 9:03 pm

Great news, Calliope! Really nice, even thouth it's not decided yet, being a candidate is also cool )))
Mind if I post your words in my LJ as a quote?
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miki
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PostSubject: Re: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Wed Jan 13, 2010 10:03 pm

Hi Calliope, I've read this article, too..

I am sure it would be such an honor to carry the national flag at the Opening Ceremony which is very exciting for Daisuke, but I am looking at it from a very different angle.

I actually hope he won't be named the flag bearer, I even don't want him to attend the opening ceremony. Oops. I know this is kind of a very selfish view but I want him to save all that energy going in to the games.

Typically the opening ceremony is held at night, it's cold, it's outside, it's way over an hour, can you imagine to hang out in such a condition when you would be competing in a week? You could catch a cold during the ceremony! Even though athletes are strong, who knows.

I don't think Shizuka Arakawa attended the opening ceremony at Torino. Did she? Michellel Kwan did attend, and a few days later she got injured during pratice - it's not related to the cold weather but still it's not a good sign - and we know the rest...

Just my selfish opinion. I know all athletes can enjoy the ceremony and it's historic to be there, but I just don't know how much that will affect their conditions when they want to be the best of the best. Maybe they get all the adrenalin from the ceremony and hyped up for the competition which may be a good thing.

Sorry I might be a spoiler here. I just hope for the best.
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PostSubject: Re: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Wed Jan 13, 2010 11:02 pm

Thank you for the information, Calliope. It's quite an honor.

miki wrote:
Typically the opening ceremony is held at night, it's cold, it's outside, it's way over an hour,
In Vancouver, it will be at 6pm and indoor (which makes everybody wonder what they'll do with the flame).

Carolina Kostner said she wouldn't have exchanged the opportunity to carry the Italian flag in Torino for a medal (well, yes, it was in her home country, and the ladies have a lot more time to "recover" before they compete, but still). On a personal note, I attended a big gymnastics event with about 30000 participants 10 years ago, and all I clearly remember is... the opening ceremony.

I understand your concerns, miki, and I partly agree with them, but it can work both ways, really. Either tire athletes out, or give them even more energy and motivation. I guess it's different for everybody and we don't know how it could affect Daisuke.

I'm sure that whatever the choice is, and no matter if he goes to the Opening Ceremony or not, Dai will give everything he has during the competition. And that's what really matters. Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Wed Jan 13, 2010 11:30 pm

miki wrote:
I am sure it would be such an honor to carry the national flag at the Opening Ceremony which is very exciting for Daisuke, but I am looking at it from a very different angle.

I actually hope he won't be named the flag bearer, I even don't want him to attend the opening ceremony. Oops. I know this is kind of a very selfish view but I want him to save all that energy going in to the games.

My thoughts exactly.
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PostSubject: Re: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Thu Jan 14, 2010 1:15 am

It really is quite an honor, but there are pros and cons to it obviously. I remember Katia Gordeeva wrote in her book "My Sergei" that they did not go to the opening ceremonies in Calgary (1988) but that Sergei carried the Russian flag in Lillehammer, and they won both times, so....hopefully it will be the same for Daisuke. Very Happy
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Calliope
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PostSubject: Re: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Thu Jan 14, 2010 6:11 am

Euphoria: go ahead, I don't mind at all. Smile

miki wrote:
I don't think Shizuka Arakawa attended the opening ceremony at Torino. Did she?

I think she did, I remember her saying that she took Pavarotti singing "Nessun Dorma" as a good omen or something like that.

Anyway, I agree that there are pros and cons to being flag bearer. Even being a candidate is an honor (I never thought they would think to choose someone so young; it seems like usually veterans are chosen), and I'm sure actually carrying the flag is an unforgettable experience. But besides the possible physical side effects, I imagine being flag bearer would add a lot of pyschological pressure as well...

Ultimately, I hope that if Daisuke is offered the job he can make the decision according to what he wants and doesn't feel obligated to accept (because he's a JOC symbol athlete and maybe they really want him to do it or something). Regardless of whether or not he's flag bearer though, I think he'll attend the opening ceremony. Of course he wants to concentrate on the competition, but he said that he also wants to enjoy the Olympic experience since it'll be his last time, and back in Torino he felt like he wasn't really "there."

I just read this article today, which states that the JOC is in a state of confusion naming the team captain and flag bearer, so the official annoucement will be delayed for a few days. It looks like they're having a hard time deciding since they have to take a lot of factors into account, like who will be at the opening ceremony and who has competitions when. It also says that since the captain/flag bearer have to go through rehearsals, it might be hard to coordinate with athletes who are serious medal contenders (like figure skaters and speed skaters). Other sources have named Okabe (a skiier) and Okazaki (a speed skater) for the jobs, but then their federations said they haven't heard anything.

EDIT: Another article on the team captain/flag bearer selection: http://news.searchina.ne.jp/disp.cgi?y=2010&d=0114&f=entertainment_0114_006.shtml

It says that the main candidates for flag bearer mentioned by the media (not the JOC; the JOC itself has not named anyone in particular) are Tomomi Okazaki (speed skating), Madoka Natsumi (cross-country skiing), and Daisuke. It also mentions that when Daisuke was reported as a candidate, many comments from fans saying "Let him concentrate on the competition" appeared online.

I just thought it was interesting that the opposition from fans was noticeable enough for the media to pick up on. Clearly, Daisuke has a lot of protective and vocal fans. Razz
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PostSubject: Re: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Thu Jan 14, 2010 2:38 pm

Finally the official announcement is out: http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/olympic/2010/news/topic/news/20100114-OYT1T00918.htm

Takanobu Okabe will be team captain, and Tomomi Okazaki will be flag bearer.

So that's that, I guess. I really wonder what Chunichi's article was all about; they really jumped the gun in decisively naming Daisuke as flag bearer (they were the only ones to mention him; most other sources mentioned Okazaki). They seriously confused a lot of people.
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PostSubject: Re: Daisuke candidate to be Olympic flag bearer   Fri Jan 15, 2010 8:08 am

Sigh of relief! Now Daisuke can decide if he wants to attend the ceremony or not. Either way, I hope he'll enjoy the Olympic Games and do his best.
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