PARIS: Laura Flessel-Colovic, a double Olympic fencing champion and five-time Olympic medallist, has been appointed the new French Minister of Sport by new Prime Minister Edouard Philippe.

Flessel-Colovic’s appointment was one of string of new arrivals in government after inauguration at the weekend of President Emmanuel Macron.

She was flag bearer for France at the London 2012 Olympic Games, is a member of the Paris 2024 bid athletes’ committee and played an integral role in this week’s visit to the French capital of a bids evaluation commission from the International Olympic Committee.

By coincidence Thomas Bach, president of the IOC is also a former Olympic fencing champion.

Paris 2024 co-chairs Tony Estanguet and Bernard Lapasset sent their congratulatios.

In a joint statement they said: “This appointment confirms the central role athletes play in the governance of sport in France.

“We look forward to continuing the work that has been going on for nearly two years with Laura Flessel-Colovic, as we look ahead to the IOC decision on the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Lima on 13 September.”