There may have been 207 flag bearers in the Rio Olympics opening ceremony, but only one truly captured our
The well-oiled, shirtless Tongan one.
This is him.
Twitter lit up as little-known taekwondo athlete and occasional model TaiPita Nikolas Taufatofua walked ahead of his team.
With good reason.
But it appears there’s more to the man than his chiselled rig.
Here’s what we know:
1. He’s 32.
2. He was born in Australia, but raised in Tonga.
3. His father is Tongan, his mother is Australian-British.
4. He currently lives in Brisbane.
5. He has an engineering degree and is working on his master’s degree
6. He works at Sandgate House, which an emergency support service for homeless youth.
7. He is the first Tongan to qualify in taekwondo for the Olympics.
Time to make History! I am ready! Mathew 17:20 – ” If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. And nothing will be impossible for you.” #SetGoalsSooBigThatTheyBothScareAndExciteYou! #taekwondo #mma #martialarts #karate #brazil #athlete #gym #tonga #australia #ninja #calisthenics #yoga #inspire #motivate
8. He started the sport at age five and over the years has broken six bones, torn three ligaments and spent three months in a wheelchair.
9. He tried to crowdfund his Olympic dream.
10. He once did a spot of modelling, showcasing wedding-wear for an Aussie events company.
11. The bottom half of his Olympics garb is called a tapa, has traditional design called a manulua and is held up by a kafa. His auntie made his.
12. His Instagram followers jumped by 1000 in the first hour after he appeared at Rio.
Oh yeah, and he’s single. Should we have mentioned that bit first?
Meanwhile these are the Aussie women we’ve been keeping an eye on Rio:
Feature image: Instagram