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(L-R) Lord Mayor of Brisbane Adrian Schrinner, Australian Senator Richard Colbeck, President of Australian Olympic Committee John Coates, three time Olympic gold medalist James Tomkins and Premier of Queensland Annastacia Palaszczuk, attend a press conference after Brisbane was announced as the 2032 Summer Olympics host city during the 138th IOC Session at Hotel Okura in Tokyo on July 21, 2021. (Photo : TORU HANAI/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Great news, Australian sports fans, the Olympics is returning Down Under. On Wednesday, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced that Brisbane, Australia, will host the 2032 Summer Games. The result wasn’t a complete surprise as Brisbane competed without an opponent as the IOC decided to avoid rival bids this time around.
The world’s largest sporting event will go back to Australia 32 years after the highly successful staging of the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. Before that, Melbourne also hosted the Olympic Games back in 1956.
Brisbane celebrates after successful Olympic bid
Before Wednesday’s vote, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison told IOC members in an 11-minute video link that “We know what it takes to deliver a successful Games in Australia.” Morrison raised both arms in triumph and gave two thumbs up upon learning of Brisbane’s victory as the Australian city won by a vote of 72-5.
Celebrations erupted soon after, with a fireworks display lighting up the sky in Brisbane. Just like the 2028 host Los Angeles, Brisbane has 11 years to prepare for the Olympics. Brisbane hosting the 2032 Summer Games looked to be a done deal even before the IOC decided in Tokyo.
In February, in a surprise move, the IOC gave Brisbane exclusive negotiating rights that left Olympic officials of other rival countries such as Qatar, Germany, and Hungary blindsided. They were also planning their respective bids.
Even without opposition, Australia still sent a high-level delegation to Tokyo to seal the deal for Brisbane. Among those who wooed Olympic voters in the meeting were Brisbane Mayor Adrian Schrinner, Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, and Australian sports minister Richard Colbeck.
Also in attendance was long-time Australian Olympic official and now IOC vice president John Coates. He helped shape the fast-track selection process that netted Brisbane the 2032 Games. The said format was designed to cut huge campaign costs and help the IOC remove the risk of vote-buying, which has plagued the selection of previous Summer Games hosts.
The 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics and the embattled 2020 Tokyo Olympics are still under investigation by French prosecutors for such illegal practices, implicating officials who have now lost their standing in the IOC family as active or honorary members.
IOC President Bach gives full support to Brisbane
IOC President Thomas Bach gave his full support to Brisbane in a statement, saying, “The Brisbane 2032 vision and Games plan fit into long-term regional and national strategies for social and economic development in Queensland and Australia.”
Brisbane has been positioning itself as a prime location for sporting events, with several key tournaments set to take place in the Australian city and surrounding region. They will host the 2022 FIBA Women’s Basketball World Cup, the 2022 UCI Road World Championships in cycling, and the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in soccer.
The region, for that matter, also hosted the 2018 Commonwealth Games on the Gold Coast. That experience proved vital in Brisbane and Australia securing the coveted Olympic Games.
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