On Monday at the Yacht Club de Monaco, Prince Albert II presented the six sporting talents set to represent the Principality in the Tokyo Olympic Games (23 July – 8 August). Table tennis player Xiaoxin Yang was named flag bearer for the team.

When the games begin in Tokyo at the end of the month, these will be the six athletes wearing Monaco’s colours. Charlotte Afriat (athletics, 100m), Cédric Bessi (judo, -73kg), Xiaoxin Yang (table tennis), Quentin Antognelli (rowing, single scull), Claudia Verdino (swimming, 100m breaststroke) and Théo Druenne (swimming, 1,500m freestyle) all attended the evening at the Yacht Club de Monaco on Monday with Prince Albert II.

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“Inspired by the Olympic ideal, our team will reveal its value with their performances and state of mind. I wish all of our athletes the very best of luck in achieving their goals and having an unforgettable Olympic experience,” said the Sovereign, before going on to focus on the important role the Olympics play across the planet. “These Games need to help make our society more sustainable, more inclusive and more equal. The pandemic has taught us a lesson in solidarity and how to transform challenges into opportunities for the future.”

Prince Albert II next to Xiaoxin Yang, flag-bearer for the Monégasque team.

As the figurehead of a promising Monégasque team, made up of three boys and three girls, it was only natural for Prince Albert II to name Xiaoxin Yang as the team’s flag-bearer for Tokyo. During the Games, the table tennis player is in with a real chance of taking home a medal, competing as one of the world’s best athletes in the sport. As for Quentin Antognelli, Cédric Bessi, Charlotte Afriat and Claudia Verdino, they all receieved an invite to the games, with the last three athletes making up the Universality quota.

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“Since 1920, the Principality of Monaco has sent 110 Monégasque athletes from 12 disciples to compete in 20 Summer Olympic Games. The news of participating once again brings great pride and comes as a real honour,” said Yvette Lambin-Berti, Secretary-General of the Monégasque Olympic Committee.