This Gold Coast Commonwealth Games will bear a special meaning for Alistair Brownlee, as he not only shoulders his nation’s hope for a gold Triathlon medal, but he will carry England’s flag and lead the 390-strong England team at the opening ceremony.

“It is a massive honour to carry the flag for England at the Commonwealth Games.” said Alistair Brownlee.

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The double Olympic Triathlon champion Brownlee will be defending his Commonwealth title in the individual and mixed relay races. However, the race has been shortened to a sprint distance featuring a swim leg of 750 meters, a 20-km cycle and a 5-km run compared to the traditional Olympic distances of a 1.5-km swim, 40-km cycle and 10-km run offered in the previous games.

Recovering from a hip surgery last year, Brownlee will certainly appreciate the shorter distance. He picked up the injury as he turned to longer distances for the IRONMAN 70.3 series which covers a 1.9km swim, 90km cycle and 21km run.

In this edition of the games in Gold Coast, Triathlon will feature the first gold medal of these games, starting with the women’s race. Two-time world champion Flora Duffy of Bermuda will be seeking her first Commonwealth Games medal and is expected to lead the women’s charge.

Malaysia’s hopes in Triathlon will be represented by debutants 26-year old Serena Yang in the women’s and 17-year old Chong Xian Hao in the men’s events.

Source: Eurosport and NZ Herald.