Category: Australia Published on Friday, 27 July 2012 03:31 Written by Maaria Adam
A triple silver medalist, Lauren Jackson was the first Australian female in 20 years to carry the flag in the opening ceremony of a summer Games. Prime Minister Julia Gillard said Australian Olympians would make the nation proud and were made of really good stuff. She told the reporters, "I'm really proud that we're seeing Lauren Jackson take the flag and take us in." she added, "She's a great leader and she's going to be great leader of the team as it proudly marches in wearing its green and gold and getting ready for the Games to come."
The Opals skipper was challenging in her fourth Olympic Games. A life-sized picture of Lauren Jackson attracted too much attention from the passers-by in Canberra after the basketballer was declared as Australia's flag bearer for the London Olympic opening ceremony.
Jackson was returning to play for the team in 2013 and was a long-standing player with the Canberra Capitals WNBL team. The artist Margaret Hadfield has also placed her six-foot Lauren Jackson painting on display outside her south Canberra studio, draped with an Australian flag.
Hadfield’s painting of Jackson was an entry for the Archibald Portrait Prize. She said, "I painted her earlier this year and the end of last year, but it didn't get hung, I've put her on display out the front because I was so happy that she was chosen to be flagbearer. She's so modest, and she's such an amazing sports person."