Pakistani wrestler Shujauddin Malik, who was reportedly stopped from carrying the national flag at the Commonwealth Games opener, has vowed to "recover from the shock" and win a gold medal.
Malik, Pakistan’s potential gold medal hope, said in New Delhi: “It was a very embarrassing moment for me and I am still struggling to forget the incident.
“It was my right to hold the national flag and he (chef de mission Muhammad Ali Shah) not only deprived me of that honour but also misbehaved with me and my coach,” Pak Tribune website quoted him as saying.
Malik was reportedly supposed to carry the flag and lead the national contingent into the Jawaharlal Nehru stadium Oct 3. But at the last moment, Shah, who heads the Pakistan contingent, decided to carry it.
Weightlifting team members felt slighted and they insisted that the national flag must be carried by Malik. This led to a verbal altercation between the weightlifters and Shah.
Malik had won the only gold medal for Pakistan at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne.
“Pakistan is my priority and I’ll try to do well to make its flag fly high," he was quoted as saying.
“I trained for months for these Games and I’ll recover from the shock to repeat my Melbourne performance.”