The 2026 Commonwealth Games might get pushed back to 2027 as the Australian state of Victoria withdrew as host earlier this year. The event could be hosted in various cities or have a slightly toned-down version, according to the officials.
Speaking at a senate inquiry on Friday, the chief executive of the Commonwealth Games Australia, Craig Phillips, said:
“It may be a scaled-back version of the games, given the time we have, but if you look around the capital cities around Australia, all have the capability of hosting games.
“Even some of the smaller cities around the country have that capability of certainly contributing to a game. We have to look at all possible models – a single-city game, a shared hosting arrangement.”
Speaking on the possibility of a delayed event, Phillips mentioned:
“The CGF have already indicated – they’ve done this publicly – that they are open to the games moving into 2027 to give any potential host more time, and that’s certainly something we’re looking at in terms of any state or any host city that we do talk to.”
For now, Commonwealth Games Australia is trying to deal with the price tag that the Victorian government put on hosting the games.
The premier of Victoria, Dan Andrews, had announced that the state would no longer be hosting the event after the estimated costs of the games blew up to A$7 billion. The originally anticipated cost was A$2.6 billion.
Discussing the possibility of the Commonwealth Games being hosted by multiple cities, Philip said that the organization had to work out a detailed proposal.
“Governments are going to want to know what it’s going to mean for a city, what it’s going to cost, what their obligations are. We’re developing the model to actually be able to have those sensible discussions with state governments and councils,” he said.
Victoria pays the Commonwealth Games Federation A$380 million for settlement
As the Victorian Government announced that they wouldn’t be hosting the 2026 Commonwealth Games, the state will have to pay A$380 million as compensation to CGF.
The other terms of the agreement were kept confidential, but the groups released a joint statement saying:
“All parties engaged respectfully and made appropriate concessions in order to reach an agreement.”
With this sudden withdrawal, sports enthusiasts across the world were left in doubt over the 2026 CWG. It remains to be seen if the Commonwealth Games Australia can find a solution, or if the games are forced to move to 2027.