SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – He is the only wrestler to ever represent his country at the Olympic Games, and now he will be carrying their flag as well. Asnage Castelly, an assistant wrestling coach at Springfield Technical Community College, has been selected to bear the Haitian flag during the opening ceremony at the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
Castelly will be only one of 11 athletes representing the Caribbean nation, and is not only their only wrestler in the games this year, but is actually the only wrestler ever sent to the Olympics from Haiti. In a STCC news release sent to 22News, Castelly said that he is proud to represent Haiti in the Parade of Nations.
“I did not see it coming,” Castelly said. “I didn’t see it happening, but I’m honored and grateful.”
Castelly currently lives in Agawam, but says that he wants to be able to return to his home country and promote the sport in schools there. He developed his love for wrestling when he first moved to the United States and saw Olympic wrestling on television.
Two other wrestling coaches at STCC, Anibal and Alberto Nieves, will coach Castelly in Rio. Anibal Nieves himself represented Puerto Rico in the Olympics twice.
The opening ceremony for the Games of the XXXI Olympiad is on Friday, August 5. The games run through Sunday, August 21, and you can watch them locally on 22News.