Pita Taufatofua to compete at 2018 Winter Olympics

Tonga’s flagbearer at Rio Olympics, Pita Taufatofua said he wanted to compete at the 2018 Winter Olympics in cross-country skiing.

Taufatofua who stole the show after his glistening body attracted millions of viewers on the internet  in Rio recently did it again in China during the 2016 Guangdong 21st Century Maritime Silk Road International Expo in October.

He led the Tongan delegation to Guangdong where they represented Tonga promoting tourism.

The 33-year-old taekwondo fighter will attempt to qualify for the sport and become the kingdom’s first ever athlete to compete in it.

The tiny south Pacific island nation’s location near the equator means snow does not exist there but that would not stop Taufatofua who grew up in Australia from pursuing his dream.

“We have coconut trees, they keep us warm. We’ve got the island spirit,” Taufatofua said in a video released on the IOC’s Olympic Channel.

“It’s a different sort of workout. It’s a little bit colder, but we’re from the islands. The Polynesian spirit isn’t going anywhere.”

The next Winter Olympics will be held in the South Korean city of Pyeongchang from 9-25 February 2018.

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