It’s official. The Olympics are headed to Australia for a third time after Brisbane was named host of the 2032 Games.
The Queensland capital was awarded the 2032 Olympic Games in a landslide* victory.
International Olympic Committee members were won over by Australia’s reliability, unity and natural beauty.
IOC president Thomas Bach announced Brisbane as the 2032 host city from Japan on the night of July 21, two days before the opening ceremony of the postponed Tokyo Games.
Six years of meticulous* planning by Brisbane’s bid organisers culminated* in a secret ballot by IOC members that lasted no longer than 30 minutes.
Of the 80 IOC members, an overwhelming* 72 agreed to give Brisbane Australia’s third Olympics and second Paralympics.
Only five of the IOC delegates* voted against Brisbane and three abstained*.
The vote came after a slick* and colourful 20-minute final presentation to the members, led by Prime Minister Scott Morrison in a video link from Canberra and the Queensland Premier, Annastacia Palaszczuk, who flew to Tokyo especially to eyeball the IOC members.
Mr Bach made the announcement, building some tension, saying: “I have the honour to announce that the Games of the 35th Olympiad are awarded to Brisbane, Australia”.
The Brisbane 2032 delegation*, seated in the front row, jumped from their seats in excitement and Mr Morrison, in Canberra, gave the camera a big thumbs up.
At home in Brisbane, crowds gathered to watch the announcement on big screen televisions in South Bank parkland, celebrating when the winner was declared.
The victory was 35 years in the making for Australian Olympic Committee president and IOC vice president John Coates who immediately thanked all levels of government in Australia for their co-operation.
“Australians like to have a go. Six years ago, the mayors of South-East Queensland did just that when they undertook a feasibility study* into what the Games could mean for their region,” Mr Coates said.
“With the support of the Queensland and federal governments that ‘have a go’ moment has become an ambition realised.
“Of course, the starter’s gun has only just been fired and the real work now begins.”
Brisbane will become the third Australian capital after Melbourne in 1956 and Sydney in 2000 – and the 24th global city – to host an Olympic Games.
Sydney’s hugely successful games were still fresh in the minds of IOC members, who took comfort from Australia’s reputation for hosting global events.
Mr Coates told the IOC members that the Brisbane 2032 Olympics would be the “together games”, honouring the new Olympic motto of higher, stronger, faster – together.
In his stirring* pitch, Mr Morrison drew upon Australia’s history with the Olympic Movement and pointed out the nation’s multicultural links.
The Prime Minister said Australia was made up of people from more than 300 different ethnic backgrounds and was “similar to a giant size Olympic village all together’’.
Ms Palaszczuk declared the decision would be “so great for our city, our region and our state’’.
An emotional Queensland Olympic Council President and Sydney 2000 gold medallist Natalie Cook said Brisbane would never be the same.
“It’s hard to put into words, after being involved in five Olympics myself and seeing cities transform, what this means for not only Brisbane but the nation,” she said.
“Like there are few athletes who become Olympians, even fewer cities become Olympic cities.”
Ms Cook, 46, said hosting the Olympic Games would be “way bigger” than her beach volleyball gold medal at Sydney two decades ago.
“This is something that will permeate* and infiltrate* all corners of the state and the country,” she said.
“It will inspire people to be one step better than they were yesterday.”
- landslide: when a large number of votes go to one candidate or group
- meticulous: very careful and precise
- culminated: ended with
- overwhelming: very great in amount
- abstained: chose not to vote
- delegates: representatives
- slick: impressive
- delegation: group of representatives
- feasibility study: a study that investigates if something is possible
- stirring: causing excitement or strong emotion
- permeate: spread throughout
- infiltrate: get into
- What year will Brisbane host the Olympic Games?
- Who is the IOC president?
- How many IOC members voted for Brisbane?
- In which country did the vote and announcement happen?
- Who made a stirring pitch on a video link from Canberra?
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1. Be inspired
Beach volleyballer and Queensland Olympic Council President Natalie Cook said hosting the Olympic Games in Brisbane would “inspire people to be one step better than they were yesterday”. What do you think this statement means and how do you think the Brisbane Olympics will inspire you?
Time: allow 25 minutes to complete this activity
Curriculum Links: English; Humanities and Social Sciences
Imagine it is 2032 and you are in charge of designing the gold, silver and bronze medals for the Brisbane Games. Draw a picture of your design, labelling the different parts of your design and explaining what they represent.
Time: allow 25 minutes to complete this activity
Curriculum Links: Visual Arts
Opener Up-Level It
Make a list of all the openers in the article. Pick three that repeat and see if you can replace them with another word, or shuffle the order of the sentence to bring a new opener to the front.
Don’t forget to re-read the sentence to make sure it still makes sense, and that it actually sounds better.