Oz rubbishes hosting of Commonwealth Games rumours

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Commonwealth Games
Melbourne, Feb 18: Amid concerns over New Delhi's preparations to stage the 2010 Commonwealth Games, Australian officials have laughed off suggestions that Melbourne is on standby to host the event.

The possibility of Melbourne, host of the 2006 Commonwealth Games, stepping in again next year has been mooted with the event now just over 18 months away.

But it was news to Australian Commonwealth Games Association (ACGA) chief executive Perry Crosswhite, The Age reported.

"That's all very interesting because we've never been asked that or even had it indicated to us. I talked to (former Melbourne Commonwealth Games Minister) Justin Madden about it yesterday and he said it would be almost impossible for Melbourne to do it anyway. "The village is gone and everything else," Crosswhite said on Wednesday.

"The only time you've had a Games move was the 1976 Winter Olympics when (Denver) couldn't hold them (over a funding issue) and Innsbruck held them again, but in those days the Olympics was probably a thousand athletes.

"It just wouldn't happen unless there was a security issue, when they'd probably just be postponed rather than move them somewhere else. I just chuckle at those things because it's just not going to happen," he added.

Crosswhite is hopeful that India's vast resources and huge population can make the event in Delhi a success.

The ACGA was informed in Nov last year that venues were behind schedule, but it is hardly a unique issue.

The same problem occurred during preparations for the Athens 2004 and Sydney 2000 Olympics, plus the Melbourne Commonwealth Games.

Crosswhite also feels India is well placed to deal with the current financial crisis.

ANI

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