'I don't know much about snow' – Tongan flagbearer breaks down his new challenge

Tonga's Winter Olympics flagbearer Pita Taufatofua opened up about his switch to cross-country skiing in order to compete at this year's games in PyeongChang.

Having competed at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Taufatofua jumped sports to compete at this year's Winter Olympics, this time as a cross-country skier.

Speaking to media in PyeongChang last night, Taufatofua spoke about his journey to this year's games.

"I needed this new challenge," he said.

"I'm not a distance athlete, I don't know much about snow, but I'm learning."

"I learnt on roller skis throughout the year in Australia and Tonga. We had no access to funds or equipment at that stage - but we found ways." 

Pita Taufatofua made the switch to cross country skiing to compete in PyeongChang this year. Source: 1 NEWS


'We will rebuild' - Tongan flag bearer Pita Taufatofua shares touching message for cyclone-hit Tonga from Winter Olympics

Tonga's Olympic flag bearer Pita Taufatofua has sent a special message to his people tonight after the Pacific nation was battered by Cyclone Gita earlier in the week.

Taufatofua represented Tonga at the 2016 Rio Olympics and is competing in the PyeongChang Winter Olympics in the cross-country skiing event.

"The Tongan people and Pacific Islanders have a very unique personality - they laugh at everything," said Taufatofua.

"They joke about everything, they do it in a way that they can make light of anything – it can be the most worst possible circumstance.

"They'll find some way to turn it into a positive and that is something very unique about Polynesians."

Taufatofua said the heart of the Tongan people and culture will help them get through.

"If there is a specific message to them you know we will rebuild," said Taufatofua.

"We've been rebuilding for a thousand years, we've had cyclones come before.

"What hasn't been affected is the heart of the people.

"Buildings we can repair but the core values and the core strengths of the Tongan people, no cyclone can come through and affect them – that hasn't been touched.

"And that's what is going to get our people through this."

Taufatofua says Cyclone Gita won't affect "the heart of the people". Source: 1 NEWS


Video: 'I will be in his corner' - Joseph Parker's younger brother set to fight in undercard unification bout

Joseph Parker's younger brother John has been named to fight in the undercard of his heavyweight unification bout against Anthony Joshua.

John, 23, said he is humbled with the opportunity and is looking forward to being in his brother's corner for the super fight.

"Joseph has always been there for me in boxing and I have always been there for him," said John.

"We've always helped each other and we have always had that love-hate competitive relationship.

"Anything that I can do he says he can do better."

John is a cruiserweight fighter and has three wins under his belt.

"I will be in his corner (Joseph), I'm not expecting him to be in mine - if he is then even better. I know this fight is important and I don't expect anything from him more than the win," said John.

New Zealand heavyweight boxer Joseph Parker stares down his brother John training at The Wreck Room, Auckland, New Zealand. Monday 1 May 2017. © Copyright Photo: Andrew Cornaga / www.photosport.nz
New Zealand heavyweight boxer Joseph Parker stares down his brother John. Source: Photosport

"Mum and dad love it whenever me and Joseph are together because they know that we are bit more tame when we are with each other."

John's trainer Bryan Barry the brother of Joseph's trainer Kevin Barry, said it is crucial John comes away with a win.

"It's really important that John sets the tone for the night, it's important that we get the night off to a good start for Joseph," said Barry.

Parker and Joshua are set to face off on April 1 in Cardiff, Wales at Principality Stadium.

John Parker will be looking to get the night started with a bang for the Parker camp in Cardiff, Wales. Source: 1 NEWS