The Roar
The Roar


Coates insists Aussies aren’t tired of the Olympics after winning Brisbane bid

Australian Olympians send time with their fans after the 2016 Games. (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)
21st July, 2021

Australian Olympic Committee boss John Coates believes enthusiasm for the Games will remain high heading into Brisbane 2032.

Tokyo is facing a staggering financial loss with fans locked out and many of the Japanese population against the Games being staged during the COVID-19 pandemic.

But Coates doesn’t think there is Olympic “fatigue” and believes the Games will be warmly embraced by Australians in 11 years’ time.

He said many athletes still viewed the Games as the pinnacle of their sporting careers and television ratings may reach record levels.

“I went into the village the other day and there was no fatigue amongst the athletes, there was just absolute excitement that they were here,” Coates said from Tokyo following the announcement. 

“For me, that’s always the test – if the athletes still regard this as the most important competition in their lives… then the Olympics is in pretty good shape. 

“We will see five million people watch this – the opening ceremony.

“This may rate better on television in Australia than the Sydney Games.”

The Australian flag

(Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)


Coates, who is also a vice-president of the IOC, said the body had “reacted well” by introducing new sports such as surfing, skateboarding and climbing to appeal to new younger markets.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk, who also addressed the IOC members in Tokyo before the vote, said she wanted to yell “Queenslander” loudly after getting the good news.

She said the Brisbane Games, which follows Paris and Los Angeles, would set Queensland up “for a golden age”.

Organisers are hopeful the Games will be cost-neutral, meaning no additional expense for taxpayers beyond a $4.5 billion budget covered by ticket sales, sponsorship and the IOC.

“This is ultimately a win for every single Queenslander,” Palaszczuk said.

“This is going to set Queensland up for a golden age. 

“It’s putting Brisbane on the world map, making sure everyone knows where Queensland is, making sure that when we come out this pandemic everyone will want to come and experience what our state has to offer. 

“It’s going to be a decade worth of investment. It is going to be a catalyst for change, opportunity… this is our moment to shine.”