Shila earlier decided not to participate in the upcoming SA Games
The Bangladesh Olympic Association (BOA) has announced the name of 2016’s double gold-medalist Mahfuza Khatun Shila as the flag bearer of the 13th South Asian Games scheduled to begin in Nepal on December 1.
Shila earlier decided not to participate in the upcoming SA Games. Had she decided to participate, it would have resulted in a different scene at the opening ceremony, as the flag bearer is usually selected from among previous participants in the contingent who are not taking part.
“We had to consider some issues before confirming Shila. She is one of South Asia’s best swimmers in 100m and 50m breaststroke events. She was part of our contingent long ago, before her decision to withdraw from the event due to personal reasons,” said Bangladesh Chef de Mission at SA Games and BOA deputy secretary general Asaduzzaman Kohinoor yesterday.
An excited Shila, who won two gold medals out of Bangladesh’s total four in 2016 SA Games, said: “I never imagined that BOA would take such a unique decision. It’s a big achievement for me, because now I have to lead the whole Bangladesh team.”
Meanwhile, premier archer Ruman Shana, weightlifter Mabia Akter Shimanta and shooter Shakil Ahmed were among the others who were shortlisted as candidates for flag bearer. Swimmer Rubel Rana was the flag bearer for Bangladesh in 2016.