Rio Olympics 2016: Cape Verde, Nauru, Refugee Olympic Team, American Samoa among Parade of Nations underdogs

Rio -We love a good underdog story as much as the next person when it comes to the Olympic Games. That’s why “Cool Runnings” is one of our favorite movies. Everyone loves it when a country comes out of nowhere and surprises people with their determination!

With that in mind, we wanted to go into tonight’s Parade of Nations telecast spotlighting some of the most intriguing places taking part in the Games this year, and some that many viewers may not even be aware of. (Some of these we even needed to do research on for this piece.) It’d certainly be fun to see any of these athletes walk away with a medal, or at least further attention to their story!

Cape Verde – A small archipelago located off of the western coast of Africa. Hurdler Jordin Andrade will compete alongside runner Lidiane Lopes, gymnast Elyane Boal, boxer Davilson Morais, and martial artist Maria Andrade.

East Timor a.k.a. Timor-Leste – A small soveriegn state located near Indonesia, three combatants will be taking part in the Games: Runners Augusto Ramos Soares and Nélia Martins to go along with cross-country cyclist Francelina Cabral.

American Samoa – More people may be aware of this territory than they were a few years ago thanks to John Oliver making a segment about how these people, despite being able to fight for America, are not technically Americans in the sense that they lack full citizenship. Runners Isaac Silafau and Jordan Mageo will join judo artist Benjamin Waterhouse and weightlifter Tanumafili Jungblut at the Games.

Nauru – Weighlighter Elson Brechtefeld and judo artist Ovini Uera are the only representatives from this country in the Micronesia region.

Mauritania – Located south of Morocco and Western Sahara, this African nation will have track-and-field athletes Jidou El Moctar and Houleye Ba,

Refugee Olympic Team – There are too many people to name, but many athletes from the Democratic Republican of the Congo, South Sudan, Syria, and Ethiopia who are being supported by other nations due to being without a real country. You can read a little more about them over at SB Nation.

You can head over here right now to read more about how to watch tonight’s Opening Ceremony, and where to stream it. Also, sign up over here to score some other TV news on all we cover via our official CarterMatt Newsletter. (Photo: Rio 2016.)

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