Is this the end of the Commonwealth Games? Future in doubt as Gold Coast withdraws bid

Original host Victoria pulled out of hosting the 2026 Games in July and organisers are now scrambling for an alternative

Ian Ransom
Monday 04 December 2023 09:16 GMT
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<p>Gold Coast hosted the 2018 Commonwealth Games but has withdrawn an offer to save the snake-bitten 2026 Games </p>

Gold Coast hosted the 2018 Commonwealth Games but has withdrawn an offer to save the snake-bitten 2026 Games

Australia’s Gold Coast has dropped its bid to host the 2026 Commonwealth Games, citing a lack of government support.

Gold Coast mayor Tom Tate had floated holding a “stream-lined” Games with Western Australia state capital Perth but conceded the vision did not “align” with state and federal governments.

“We did our best and that’s all people can expect,” Tate said in a statement.

“Our dual proposal with Perth would have saved Australia’s tarnished reputation, delivered billions into the national economy and given athletes, and para-athletes, a clear pathway towards other international competitions including the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics and Paralympics and then on to the 2032 Games in Queensland.”

The Gold Coast successfully hosted the 2018 Games.

Australia’s southern state of Victoria pulled out of hosting the 2026 event in July, citing a projected cost blow-out.

The future of the Games more broadly remains up in the air, with Canada’s Alberta province also withdrawing its support for a bid for the 2030 event.

Australia’s Commonwealth Games boss Craig Phillips said in September the 2026 Games could be pushed back a year to allow another Australian host time to step in.

Gold Coast successfully hosted the Games in 2018

However, on Monday he said it was more likely they would end up outside Australia.

“The people we spoke to in the Commonwealth Games family, I believe that the sentiment is very much still that the first priority is there is a solution here in Australia,” he told Australian Associated Press.

“But if that doesn’t materialise, then other options are certainly very much on the table.”

Australia, by far the Games’ most successful competing nation, has hosted five of the previous 22 editions.

Reuters

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