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Commonwealth Games 2018: everything you need to know

Commonwealth Games 2018

Fun in the sun… and snow? With the upcoming opening of the first outdoor ski park in Surfer’s Paradise, there’s so much more to après-ciate along the Gold Coast 2018. However, perhaps the most exciting even coming to this region is the Commonwealth Games 2018! Taking place in 2018, from April 4-15, the event will bring together 41 different games. With over 6,600 athletes and teams from more than 70 different countries, the Commonwealth Games 2018 is expected to attract 1.5 million spectators and even more worldwide!

History of Australia in the games

Like the Olympics, the Commonwealth Games are held every 4 years. Unlike the Olympics, these games are only open to members of the nations of the British Commonwealth. Australia has historically competed in every Commonwealth Game, starting with the first one in 1930. In addition, Australia has played host to the games 4 times, with the 2018 Commonwealth Games, being the fifth.

Commonwealth Games 2018

Photo: Kgbo

Fast facts about Australia at the Commonwealth Games

  1. With 2,218 medals, Australia is also the country to win the most medals at the Commonwealth games, beating English and Canada who stand at 2,008 and 1,473, respectively.
  2. The Australian flag bearer has won a gold medal at all but one of the 18 Commonwealth Games.
  3. The Commonwealth Games 2018 was the first time that Australia won an international vote to host.
  4. Swimming and Athletics are the two sports to garner Australia the most medals, with 558 and 406, respectively.
  5. Australia has come out first in 12 of the 16 Commonwealth Games, including every time we have hosted the games.

The games

Aussie athletes who will be competing

Leading the Australian team at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 2018 is the medal-winning marathoner, Steve Moneghetti. This appointment comes as no surprise as he also led the Australian teams at the Commonwealth Games 2010 and 2014, in Delhi and Glasgow, respectively. However, his team is still shrouded in mystery.

The first Australian athletes to be confirmed for the Commonwealth Games 2018 are the contestants for the Triathlon competition. The 6-member team consists of Jake Birtwhistle from Tasmania, Ashleigh Gentle from Queensland, Charlotte McShane from New South Wales, Luke Willian from Queensland, Matt Hauser from Queensland and Gillian Backhouse from Queensland. This confirmation is especially poignant and nerve-wracking for the competitors as their event, the triathlon is on the first day of the games. Therefore, they have the opportunity to win Australia their first gold on the first day of the games.

Ashleigh Gentle is the only competitor with experience, having competed at the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow. However, Jake Birtwhistle has been making waves in the triathlon arena with a superb season.

While the Australian Commonwealth Games Association intends to send the largest ever Australian team to the games next year, with 450 athletes, many of these competitors have yet to be confirmed.

Events Australia should be watching

Apart from the promising candidates for the Australian triathlon team, here are some other games that Australia is poised to do well in at the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

Swimming

Australian swimmer Cameron McEvoy just beat silver Olympian medallist Chad lee Clos in Tokyo and is a favourite for the 200-meter event at the Commonwealth Games 2018.

Athletics

Sprinter Morgan Mitchell was a semi-finalist at the Rio Olympics and Australia’s must-watch competitor for women’s athletic track events. Although the teams for the men’s and women’s relay have not been released, the best of the best are already down on the Gold Coast. Here is hoping that training in the host city has allowed these athletes to prepare well, ahead of their competitors.

Volleyball

Despite being a team sport, Peruvian-Australian volleyball player Mariafe Artacho del Solar and teammate Nicole Laird have landed themselves the popular vote for the Commonwealth Games 2018. With 4 gold medals under their belt, can their winning streak last through next year’s competition?

Queen’s Baton Relay

This historic and traditional event is a worldwide relay that always draws the attention of the crowds. Although the baton carried a message from Queen Elizabeth II, the head of the Commonwealth, it’s the route and the baton bearers who steal the show. Collectively, the 1,828 baton bearers will cover over a million steps from where it starts in Canberra to the endpoint in the Gold Coast. If this seems impressive, the baton’s journey started on March 13, 2017, at Buckingham Palace. It will reach Canberra on December 24, 2018, after having toured the Europe, South America, the United States, Africa, Asia and the Caribbean.

More information on individual sporting events and games can be found here.

The Venues

As one of the biggest events Australia has hosted in recent years, the Commonwealth Games 2018 will stretch from Coomera all the way to Coolangatta. Broadbeach and Surfers Paradise in the host city of Gold Coast are the main festival hubs. However, with events throughout the Commonwealth Games 2018 period, Townsville, Brisbane and Cairns will also be buzzing with events.

Townsville

From The Queen’s Garden to The Strand and The Jezzine Barracks, Townsville will focus their celebrations on the artistic culture of Queensland. Festivals here will include music, theatre, circuses, comedy and art that reflects the state’s lifestyle, culture and creativity, according to Minister O’Rourke. Spectators can look forward to the food and a live telecast of the competitions. The opening and closing ceremonies will be broadcast from the Jezzine Barracks, allowing the opportunity for the traditional owners of the region and residents of Palm Island to participate in the Commonwealth Games 2018. Townsville will also play host to the Men’s and Women’s basketball events.

Brisbane

Brisbane residents can look forward to spectacular displays from the Southbank Cultural Forecourt to the Central Business District, Botanical Gardens and Roma Street Parklands. Although the full program will only be released in February 2018, world-class musicians, inspiring talks and striking visual arts are to be announced. In addition, Brisbane has been chosen to host the shooting and track cycling events. Over 45,000 people are expected to attend the shooting events at the Belmont Shooting Complex and track cycling events at the Anna Meares Velodrome.

As a special inclusion, next year’s games will feature Women of the World (WOW) – Celebrating Women of the Commonwealth. From 6-8 April 2018, this event, to be held at Brisbane Powerhouse, aims to connect, inspire and empower females, young and old. Finally, to celebrate the culmination of the cumulative efforts of the One Million Stars to End Violence project, King George Square will be home to a grand public art installation.

Cairns

Including a live stream of the games around Cairns, the city will also feature live music and performances. Residents and visitors can head to the Esplanade or Munro Martin Parklands for all that the Festival 2018 has to offer. Meanwhile, the Cairns Convention Centre will be packed with visitors hoping to catch the men’s and women’s basketball events.

Get your commonwealth games tickets

If you haven’t managed to get your hands on one of the 900,000 Commonwealth Games 2018 tickets that have already been sold, don’t fear! You’ve got one last chance! On Monday, 20 November 2017, the final release of tickets for the 2018 Commonwealth Games will go on sale. With an additional 100,000 tickets available for purchase, the Commonwealth Games Corporation will put a total of 300,000 ticket up for grabs although this is on a first-come, first-served basis.

As the largest international multi-sporting event to come to Australia in recent years, this is a must-see spectacle. Tickets are reasonably priced at $20 for adults and $10 for kids. As part of the logistical support for spectators, free public transport on the South East Queensland transport network, the Cairns Translink bus network and the Townsville qconnect bus network will be included in the price of the tickets. Just make sure you’ve got your Commonwealth Games 2018 tickets on hand!

Commonwealth Games 2018 Jobs

Although the 2018 Commonwealth Games are an excellent opportunity for Australians to showcase their diverse culture and history, and celebrate their achievements, it is also a boost for the economy. As part of Embracing 2018, the Commonwealth Games 2018 will create lasting jobs, active communities and boost the Gold Coast to a world-class city and economy. Queensland businesses have the opportunity to enhance their capabilities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander initiatives have also been highlighted and healthy lifestyles will be promoted at this event. With all these active promotions and initiatives, there are numerous roles up for grabs for Australians. From logistics to marketing, these jobs involve transferable skills such as:

In addition to valuable skills, it is also an excellent networking opportunity. With people from all over Australia and the rest of the world, these jobs open the door to connecting with a large group of like-minded people. The event is not only looking for part-time and casual employees but also full-time professionals, who are willing to work on fixed-term contracts. With under 135 days left till the start of the Commonwealth Games 2018, visit their official page to find jobs in your city!

Find out more on the Gold Coast 2018 website.

Volunteering at the Commonwealth Games 2018

With an event of this size and magnitude, volunteers are a key feature! With over 15,000 volunteer roles and 1 million volunteer hours over 11 days, this is the event of the year! As long as you meet the following selection criteria, you stand a chance to be part of this historic event!

  1. Be 16 years of age or above at point of application,
  2. Be able to speak and read English or Australian Sign Language,
  3. Have full availability between 4th and the 15th of April 2018,
  4. Be able to travel to the Gold Coast for a casual selection event,
  5. Be able to attend all 4 days of training from November 2017,
  6. Collect your uniform and official pass from the Uniform and Accreditation Centre on the Gold Coast in January 2018, and
  7. Agree with a background check.

Most of the volunteering positions are based on the Gold Coast right in the midst of all the action and excitement. However, for the culturally-inclined, there are also positions available in Brisbane, Townsville and Cairns.

Shifts range between 6 and 10 hours, but with all the exciting games going on, you won’t want to leave! You might even get to watch someone win the historic first gold medal!

Join our positive and friendly volunteer teams and bring Australian culture to life and to the rest of the world!

The Commonwealth Games 2018 is a world stage that will showcase all that Australia has to offer. While it is true that exposure for businesses, trade, investment, tourism and culture is expected to usher in a new age of growth for the nation, at the crux of this event is a simple dream. Every athlete works towards this dream, not only to represent their country on an international stage but to share with the world who they are and where they come from. In 2018, let’s make this dream come true!

“Aussie, Aussie, Aussie. Oi! Oi! Oi!”