Australia's 75-strong team has taken its first official steps at the Commonwealth Youth Games in Trinidad and Tobago, marching in the opening ceremony at the picturesque Hasely Crawford Stadium in the capital Port of Spain.
More than 1000 young athletes from across the world will take part in the event, known as Trinbago 2023, in the youth games' seventh iteration.
NSW netballer Monica Otai and Victorian triathlete Oscar Wootton, both 17, carried the Australian flag into the stadium to mark the beginning of the eight-day event, which gets underway on Saturday with beach volleyball and the cycling time trial.
"It was really exciting to be leading out Team Australia at the opening ceremony and such an honour," Otai said.
"The experience with the team has been great and I'm looking forward to starting competition."
Australia will field 51 female and 24 male athletes across the seven sports being contested: athletics, beach volleyball, cycling, FAST5 netball, rugby 7s, swimming and triathlon.
The team is led by general manager Ellie Cole, a six-time Paralympic champion, triple world champion and four-time Commonwealth Games medallist in swimming.
Friday's opening ceremony followed a welcome celebration for the team hosted by Australia's High Commissioner to Trinidad and Tobago, Sonya Koppe.
"It's an honour to lead the green and gold and it was great to kick off with the opening ceremony," Wootton said.
Australian Associated Press
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