Sunday, October 3, 2010

Amazing to be New Zealand team's flag bearer for Delhi CWG: Van Dyk

New Zealand netball player Irene Van Dyk has said that being unveiled as the team's flag bearer for the Delhi Commonwealth Games has come as a huge shock to her.

"It is amazing, there's not a lot of people that have this opportunity, I think my heart skipped a few beats," quoted Van Dyk, as saying.You look around and see the most incredible athletes, the best of New Zealand are here," she added.

In naming the 38-year-old, who won gold at 2006 Melbourne Commonwealth Games and silver in 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games, New Zealand matched Australia, who selected netball captain Sharelle McMahon to bear their flag.

Van Dyk earned 72 caps for South Africa before switching allegiance to New Zealand.

She has played 109 Tests for the Silver Ferns and is set to overtake Lesley Rumball as the highest-capped player in the second Test at the Games.

Meanwhile, New Zealand chef de mission Dave Currie said that Van Dyk was the ideal selection.

"She was genuinely overwhelmed and gave the most amazing response of 'seriously?' It was a real honour offering it to her," Currie said.

Currie also said several other athletes would have been considered, but could not do it for logistical or other reasons.

Around 60,000 spectators are expected to attend the three-hour opening ceremony at the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on Sunday.

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