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Cheers, fireworks as Brisbane picked to host 2032 Olympics

Brisbane was awarded the 2032 Olympics on Wednesday, the inevitable winner of a one-city race steered by the IOC to avoid rival bids, triggering celebratory fireworks as it became the third Australian city to host the Summer Games after Melbourne and Sydney.

The Games will go back to Australia 32 years after the popular 2000 Sydney Olympics. Melbourne last hosted the event in 1956.

International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach confirmed the widely expected result after a vote at the IOC session in Tokyo.

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Thomas Bach announces Brisbane as the 2032 Summer Olympics host city in Tokyo. AFP

“The International Olympic Committee has the honour to announce that the Games of the 35th Olympiad are awarded to Brisbane, Australia,” Bach said.

“We know what it takes to deliver a successful Games in Australia,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison told International Olympic Committee members in an 11-minute live video link from his office.

“I’m so excited — I have so much pride for my state, for my people. Never in my lifetime did I think that this was going to happen,” said Queensland state premier Anna Palaszczuk.

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Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk (left), Brisbane mayor Adrian Schrinner and Australia’s Sports Minister Richard Colbeck celebrate the news. AFP

“We”ve done it, Queensland! We’ve done it, Brisbane! This is fantastic, this is amazing — tonight is your night, enjoy.”

Australia has already hosted the Olympics twice, in Melbourne in 1956 and Sydney in 2000, widely considered one of the most successful Games in recent history.

The awarding of the 2032 Olympics was the first to take place with a new election method adopted in June 2019 in an attempt to counter application fees and a lack of serious bids.

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Spectators celebrate after Brisbane was named host of the 2032 Olympics during the announcement in Brisbane. AFP

For the 2024 Games, Bach complained the process had “produced too many losers”, after Rome, Hamburg and Budapest all pulled out of the running.

Bidding cities have become increasingly hard to come by in recent years as costs balloon and the economic benefits of holding the Games remain unclear. The vote took place two days before the troubled Tokyo Olympics, which will start behind closed doors on Friday after a year’s delay because of the pandemic.

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