POSTED: November 11th 2011

Gold Coast to host the 2018 Commonwealth Games

Crowds were elated at the news in Australia / Gold Coast 2018
Crowds were elated at the news in Australia / Gold Coast 2018

LAURA WALDEN / Sports Features Communications

TAMPA: The Gold Coast has won the vote to stage the 2018 Commonwealth Games edging out Hambantota 43 to 27 at the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) General Assembly in St Kitts and Nevis.

Seventy nations and territories cast their votes to choose the host city and CGF chief, Michael Fennell, said, "My sincere congratulations to Gold Coast - theirs was a fantastic bid and they are a very, very worthy winner.

"Hambantota was also a very strong bid, and we have a duty to take the Games to new places, but the bid needs to be the right thing for the Commonwealth Games movement at the right time.

"This time Gold Coast was successful, but I hope Hambantota consider bidding again - their team were wonderful," he affirmed.

Australian premier Anna Bligh was ecstatic at the news and said, "Congratulations to the Gold Coast, to Queensland and Australia – we did it!

"Our united community welcomes these games.

"In 2018 we will be ready to host a unique world- class and friendly event that builds on the Commonwealth brand and enhances our city’s reputation.

"This city will be transformed with new infrastructure and a buzz that only a big international event like this can bring."

The Hambantota bid was focused on being a catalyst for change for the Sri Lankan community that was hit by a devastating tsunami in 2004. And in spite of the outcome the plans to create the

Ajith Nivard Cabraal, co-chair of the Hambantota 2018 bid, said: “It is disappointing of course that we will not see a Hambantota Games in 2018.  But we have said all along that bidding for these prestigious Games is a key part of an exciting and progressive journey in Sri Lanka. 

“Together we have embarked on a new era.  And we will make good our promise to rejuvenate the region regardless of this outcome.  We are talking about something transformational; something that will help build a better tomorrow for all our people.”

New CGF board

During the general assembly this also marked the stepping down of Hon. Michael Fennell and the election of HRH Tunku Imran from Malaysia to take up the helm of the organization. Imran also has served as CGF vice-president for 11 years and is in charge of the sports committee.

Fennell who has been president of the organization for 17 years and overseen four editions of the Commonwealth Games will become Life Vice President of the CGF.

Imran said, "I am absolutely delighted, and proud, to be the seventh President of the Commonwealth Games Federation.

“Mike Fennell is going to be a very hard act to follow, but we have a strong board, and a clear vision an strategy for the future of the Games.

“I'm now looking forward to getting stuck in and building on Mike's legacy and our strengths to make these great Games even better."

South African Commonwealth Games Association President Gideon Sam filled the place that Imran left open and Canada’s Bruce Robertson, the Chair of the 2014 Glasgow Coordination Committee was re-elected.

Honorary Secretary Louise Martin (Scotland), Honorary Treasurer Austin L. Sealy (Barbados), were re-elected unopposed as well as four of the six Regional Vice President’s were re-elected as well, with The Gambia’s Abdoulie M. Touray (Africa), Sri Lankan Hemasiri Fernando (Asia), St Lucia’s Fortuna Belrose (Caribbean) and Samona’s Tapasu Leung Wai (Oceania).

Wales’ Christopher Jenkins will take over as Vice-President for Europe and Guyana’s Kalam Azad Juman-Yassin will represent the Americas.

Keywords · Commonwealth Games · 2018 Gold Coast · Hambantota · Mike Fennell · Anna Bligh · Ajith Nivard Cabraal ·

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