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From this morning's Ballarat Courier:

APRIL 12 2022 - 7:30AM

Commonwealth Games in Ballarat: major announcement expected today

POTENTIAL: Ballarat could find the likes of middle distance running sensation Peter Bol, an Australian favourite from the Tokyo Olympics, in action at Mars Stadium. Picture: Ryan Pierse, Getty Images.POTENTIAL: Ballarat could find the likes of middle distance running sensation Peter Bol, an Australian favourite from the Tokyo Olympics, in action at Mars Stadium. Picture: Ryan Pierse, Getty Images.
 

Ballarat is today expected to be confirmed as one of the key hosts of the 2026 Commonwealth Games. Premier Daniel Andrews and minister for tourism, sport and major events Martin Pakula will make a major announcement at Mars Stadium on Tuesday morning, with the Commonwealth Games expected to be the centrepiece.

The Games have previously been touted to be held mostly in reginal Victoria, with Mars Stadium even flagged as the potential host of the track and field sports. The Commonwealth Games Federation was desperate to find a host in 2026 after South African city Durban pulled out of its plans, originally slated for this year.
 
Birmingham in England will instead host the 2022 Commonwealth Games, leaving the door ajar for a new host in four years. Mr Andrews announced a bid for the Games in February, planning for regional Victoria to host almost all events.

Speaking in February, Mr Andrews said Ballarat's Mars Stadium would need major upgrades to make it a world-class facility. However, he said it could be suitable to be the focal point of the Games, but would unlikely host an opening ceremony.

"Some regional communities are self-starters in terms of they have already got strengths. So whether it's netball and basketball in Bendigo, perhaps some of the aquatic stuff down Geelong way ... athletics for instance at the upgraded - but probably need to be further upgraded - Mars Stadium in Ballarat," Mr Andrews said at the time.

Mars Stadium's capacity is currently for 11,000 fans and when redeveloped in 2017, was designed to accommodate growth. Committee for Ballarat Chief Executive Michael Poulton, who has worked at four Olympic Games, also said in February said it was possible for Ballarat to host track and field.

Mr Poulton pointed to Gold Coast's Metricon Stadium, which was the showpiece for the 2018 Commonwealth Games. This stadium's capacity was almost doubled to 40,000 with a temporary grandstand.

More to come.

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Just announced on the Ballarat courier website:

Commonwealth Games in Ballarat: which sports Ballarat will host

Premier Daniel Andrews making the announcement at Mars Stadium on Tuesday morning.Premier Daniel Andrews making the announcement at Mars Stadium on Tuesday morning.
Ballarat has been confirmed to host the athletics events as part of the 2026 Commonwealth Games. After much speculation, the host cities for the Games were officially announced on Tuesday morning, with Ballarat to host the centrepiece track and field events.

An initial 16 sports have been locked in, although there could be more sports locked in by the end of the year. Swimming, athletics, lawn bowls, table tennis and triathlon will host Para sports, while powerlifting will also be included. Four major hubs will be established in Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong and Gippsland, with Shepparton also expected to host some events.

The current selection of sports is set to be divided as such: 

  • BALLARAT: Athletics, boxing, T20 cricket
  • BENDIGO: Lawn bowls, netball, squash, weightlifting, powerlifting, T20 cricket, final of cycling road race
  • GEELONG: Swimming, diving, volleyball, gymnastics, hockey, table tennis, triathlon, T20 cricket
  • GIPPSLAND: Badminton, rugby sevens, T20 cricket, start of cycling road race
  • MELBOURNE: Opening ceremony only.

The state government says the Games will contribute more than $3 billion to the Victorian economy, creating more than 600 full time jobs in the build-up, 3,900 during the Games and 3,000 jobs beyond the closing ceremony.

"It's a great honour to have Victoria chosen as the host venue for the 2026 Commonwealth Games - we can't wait to welcome the world to all of our state," Premier Daniel Andrews said. This will be the sixth time that Australia has staged the Commonwealth Games.

Commonwealth Games Federation president Dame Louise Martin lauded the work done for regional Victoria to receive the events. "The Commonwealth Games Federation is absolutely delighted to award the 2026 Commonwealth Games to Victoria," she said. "Commonwealth Games Australia and the Victorian Government have set out a bold and innovative vision that provides an exciting new blueprint for hosting our major multi-sport event."

Besides Melbourne 2006, they have been staged in Sydney in 1938, Perth in 1962, Brisbane in 1978 and the Gold Coast in 2018.

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2 minutes ago, RooBlu said:

Just announced on the Ballarat courier website:

Commonwealth Games in Ballarat: which sports Ballarat will host

Premier Daniel Andrews making the announcement at Mars Stadium on Tuesday morning.Premier Daniel Andrews making the announcement at Mars Stadium on Tuesday morning.
Ballarat has been confirmed to host the athletics events as part of the 2026 Commonwealth Games. After much speculation, the host cities for the Games were officially announced on Tuesday morning, with Ballarat to host the centrepiece track and field events.

An initial 16 sports have been locked in, although there could be more sports locked in by the end of the year. Swimming, athletics, lawn bowls, table tennis and triathlon will host Para sports, while powerlifting will also be included. Four major hubs will be established in Ballarat, Bendigo, Geelong and Gippsland, with Shepparton also expected to host some events.

The current selection of sports is set to be divided as such: 

  • BALLARAT: Athletics, boxing, T20 cricket
  • BENDIGO: Lawn bowls, netball, squash, weightlifting, powerlifting, T20 cricket, final of cycling road race
  • GEELONG: Swimming, diving, volleyball, gymnastics, hockey, table tennis, triathlon, T20 cricket
  • GIPPSLAND: Badminton, rugby sevens, T20 cricket, start of cycling road race
  • MELBOURNE: Opening ceremony only.

The state government says the Games will contribute more than $3 billion to the Victorian economy, creating more than 600 full time jobs in the build-up, 3,900 during the Games and 3,000 jobs beyond the closing ceremony.

"It's a great honour to have Victoria chosen as the host venue for the 2026 Commonwealth Games - we can't wait to welcome the world to all of our state," Premier Daniel Andrews said. This will be the sixth time that Australia has staged the Commonwealth Games.

Commonwealth Games Federation president Dame Louise Martin lauded the work done for regional Victoria to receive the events. "The Commonwealth Games Federation is absolutely delighted to award the 2026 Commonwealth Games to Victoria," she said. "Commonwealth Games Australia and the Victorian Government have set out a bold and innovative vision that provides an exciting new blueprint for hosting our major multi-sport event."

Besides Melbourne 2006, they have been staged in Sydney in 1938, Perth in 1962, Brisbane in 1978 and the Gold Coast in 2018.

Of course before everybody gets a bee in their bonnet, yes the Courier got the year for Brisbane (Above) wrong. Of course in 1978 they were held in Edmonton Canada. :D

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51 minutes ago, Victorian said:

So proud of our state! Interesting to see that Shepparton has missed out though! 

Its a bit rough, given that City of Shepparton councilors are the ones who first came up with the idea and started the alliance of regional cities aiming for 2030. 

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Also I can't emphasise enough how much I think the MCG as the opening ceremony venue is so incredible ridiculous. The whole point of this event is to demonstrate the Games at a smaller scale to appeal to smaller hosts. Staging an event in a 100,000+ seat stadium in a city of 5 million is not how you do this. 

It should be Geelong. 

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38 minutes ago, Australian Kiwi said:

"The 1956 Olympic Games is estimated to have attracted 1.153 million people." 
lol-what? 

The Herald Sun truly is nonsensical garbage. 

Yep! I thought that the total crowd figures for the 1956 Games were actually closer to 1.7 million and that almost one million attended the MCG over the course of the Games. Just at Ballarat alone, 30,000 was the official figure that attended the last day of the rowing. But journalists do get a little lazy these days and only half read or skim articles when doing their research. :rolleyes:

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41 minutes ago, Australian Kiwi said:

Its a bit rough, given that City of Shepparton councillors are the ones who first came up with the idea and started the alliance of regional cities aiming for 2030. 

Completely agree, Shepp appears to have been side lined today. Although the Premier has only announced sixteen of the proposed 22 sports, and the articles in the HS and Courier state that there are still sports and venues to be announced later during the year. They haven't announced where the track cycling, beach volleyball, rowing (if it's to be held), shooting/archery, martial arts, or wrestling are to included and if so where?

I know that Shepparton was very keen to host Beach Volleyball and hockey in particular. Shepparton has long been pushing to get its main indoor sports stadium rebuilt to essentially the same size and standard of Ballarat's Selkirk Stadium and were perhaps hoping that getting indoor Comm Games events allocated to the city might have prompted the funding that they were seeking. To date, Shepparton has a great plan for a new Basketball Stadium but nowhere near the $37 mil funding that they are seeking to build it as the centre-piece of their Sports City Complex. Shepparton's lead in the original Regional Victoria bid was driven by the desire to secure major funding for its Sports City complex which already has two international standard hockey pitches, a modern athletics track, and an excellent soccer facility, as well as tennis and netball facilities.

Sports_Precinct_-_Aerial_Drone_-_2017071

On a positive note, I am glad that they are hosting T20 at least 4 different venues and perhaps Shepp's Deakin Reserve will get a look in on that as well. The road cycle racing names the two venues for the start and final but whether there will be other venues in between?

It's a shame that soccer isn't played at the Comm Games because Ballarat, Bendigo and Shepparton each have excellent venues. But if Victoria gets to name its sports then perhaps soccer isn't off the table yet either.

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2 hours ago, Victorian said:

Cycling might get a new track in regional Victoria ?

They're still announcing more sports later in the year. Track cycling if held at John Cain Arena (One would expect that it will be) will not need the longer lead time for announcement or major funding as the venue is already there. I guess that they announced the major venues that will need funding in the forthcoming Victorian May Budget first.

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5 hours ago, Australian Kiwi said:

Also I can't emphasise enough how much I think the MCG as the opening ceremony venue is so incredible ridiculous. The whole point of this event is to demonstrate the Games at a smaller scale to appeal to smaller hosts. Staging an event in a 100,000+ seat stadium in a city of 5 million is not how you do this. 

It should be Geelong. 

Dont have a problem with MCG hosting the opening... and dont think it does anything to tarnish the new appeal to smaller hosts. if you have it then use it. the great thing about the MCG is that it is still world class and always used despite its age.

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No surprise this is now confirmed.

https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2022/apr/12/regional-victoria-announced-as-host-of-2026-commonwealth-games

 

Not exactly enthused by it - a shame we've got to a situation where it needs to return to Australia after just 8 years.   The regional concept is interesting, though that is kind of what the Gold Coast was and that for me was the most underwhelming games in many years.    In terms of international appeal centering the games around Melbourne would be an easy win, but I get why they've gone for the regional approach to sell it more to locals and perhaps sell Victoria as a whole internationally too.    It also perhaps provides a new model for the games moving forward of them being city or country based - I know when Wales last looked into hosting they considered North Wales, South Wales and All Wales options.

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So the Opening Ceremony at The G will be “opening the gateway to Regional Victoria”.

Yep, I’m happy that the Opening Ceremony will be at the MCG then sporting events n Regional Victoria.

Yes looks like Shepparton is not out of the picture with some satellite hubs, sports and venues to still be announced before the end of this year. This includes the Closing Ceremony location.

 

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Geelong City Council are celebrating and just announced on Twitter that the Geelong Athlete’s Village, one of four Regional ones, will be turned into affordable housing after the Games … win, win.

Also the Eastern Beach waterfront is “well positioned to host Beach Volleyball and Triathlon”.

Right next to GMHBA Stadium in Geelong is Kardina Aquatics Centre which is now expected to receive a sparkling upgrade, including temporary facilities and grandstands, just like the Gold Coast Aquatics Centre receved for the 2018 CW Games.  

A regional community sports and events centre in Geelong is also on the cards for Gymnastics if Geelong City Council can swing this.

Hockey will be played in Geelong too with installation of  a world class playing surface and upgraded facilities, temporary grandstands, etc.

GMHBA Stadium looks set to host T20 Cricket .

The Closing Ceremony venue has not been announced yet but Geelong’s GMHBA Stadium would have to be favourite.

 

 

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  • Sir Rols changed the title to Victoria 2026 - Commonwealth Games

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