Brisbane set to be named 2032 Olympics host next month

GENEVA (AP) — Brisbane has long seemed to be in a one-horse race to host the 2032 Olympics.

That race looks sure to be over and won next month when the International Olympic Committee (IOC) meets before the Tokyo Games open.

IOC President Thomas Bach said after an executive board meeting on Thursday that Australia’s third-biggest city can be awarded hosting rights as the only candidate proposed at a July 21 meeting in Tokyo.

Brisbane’s victory already appeared certain after the IOC put it on the fast track in February by being named the preferred candidate without a formal opponent.

Though Bach said the outcome was “in the hands” of the members — around 100 will meet two days ahead of the Tokyo opening ceremony — they typically rubber stamp all recommendations coming from the leadership.

Bach praised Australia as a sport-loving country with strong support from layers of government in the city of Brisbane, the state of Queensland and federal level.

“All this together I think made it somehow irresistible,” the IOC leader said.

Brisbane is set to be the first Olympic host selected unopposed under a new system to streamline bid campaigns to make them less costly, give the IOC more control and decrease the risk of vote-buying.

File photo shows a couple sitting on a dock overlooking the Sydney Opera House that is illuminated with the green and gold colours of the Australian Olympic team. PHOTO: AP