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Olympics opening ceremony memes: Tonga doesn't give a shirt

Courtesy of SBS Network View View 8

Taufatofua shot to worldwide fame when he walked shirtless and oiled up into the opening ceremony of the 2016 Summer Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The 34-year-old Taufatofua also carried his country's flag at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro where he competed in taekwondo. The former taekwondo competitor apparently said just days before Friday's Opening Ceremony that he wouldn't expose himself in the colder climate since he's now set to represent Tonga as a cross-country skier and the country's only athlete at the Winter Games.

Tonga flag bearer Pita Taufatofua poses with a volunteer and team-mates during the Winter Olympics opening ceremony.

He's back. The internet sensation didn't settle for making the Olympics in Rio, no, he decided he needed to compete in an entirely different event at the Winter Olympics.

Taufatofua trained with roller skis due to the lack of snow in Tonga.

"When you've got no snow, it's really hard to learn a snow sport so we looked at all the different ways I could mimic being on snow without actually being on snow", he said. He managed to qualify in the cross-country skiing category. "We have to just go through the blizzard, '" Taufatofua says.

Earlier this week, he warned his adoring-but-then-definitely-disappointed fans that this would be the case in an interview with New Zealand's Stuff: "I want to still be alive for my race".

Taufatofua, who is scheduled to compete in the 15km cross-country skiing freestyle race February 16, has detailed some of his recent training sessions on Instagram.

The naked Tongan's courageous cameo at Friday's opening ceremony, where the two Koreas marched together in a symbol of what organisers are calling the "Peace Games", is likely to boost his celebrity still further.