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Sports News:
Thorpe, Freeman celebrate 20-year Sydney Games anniversary

Australians have such fond reminiscences of the Sydney Olympics that officers introduced again star athletes akin to Cathy Freeman and Ian Thorpe to assist celebrate the twentieth anniversary.

For good measure, they even re-lit the cauldron at Sydney Olympic Park.

Freeman – by video hyperlink in Victoria state – and Thorpe, in particular person, each recalled what then IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch described through the closing ceremony on Oct. 1, 2000 because the “greatest games ever.”

On Tuesday, teenage basketball participant Tenayah Logan and Paralympic monitor athlete Tamsin Colley have been chosen to rekindle the flame.

Freeman, who lit the cauldron on the opening ceremony in 2000 and 11 nights later received gold within the 400 meters in one of many nation’s all-time nice sporting moments, stated it was a beautiful gesture to have “two future stars” acknowledged on such a serious stage forward of the rescheduled Tokyo Olympics subsequent yr.

With three swimming gold medals and two silver, a number of in world-record time, Thorpe, then solely 17, was essentially the most profitable Australian performer in Sydney. He stated it was essentially the most memorable expertise of his life.

“It sure was,” Thorpe informed Australian Associated Press. “For me, I remember watching on TV at the start of the opening ceremony and it’s amazing that 20 years have passed.”

He stated the anniversary celebration was an opportunity for folks to “reminisce about a time that was a great time for Sydney and the country, where everyone was kind of celebrated.”

Thorpe stated he recalled listening to from individuals who had received tickets in a poll to go to the swimming program’s opening evening.

“And they’d add something that kind of freaked me out: ‘I can’t wait to see you win your first Olympic gold medal,’ which is a lot of pressure and I went in and we hadn’t won an Olympic gold medal at that stage.”

Thorpe didn’t disappoint anybody within the crowd of 17,500 on the Sydney Olympic Aquatic Centre that evening – Sept. 16, 2000 – profitable gold within the 400-meter freestyle and breaking his personal world file in a time of three minutes, 40.59 seconds.

“I just felt this surge or sheer energy inside of me when I touched the wall and realized I had the world record,” Thorpe stated.

He would re-set the 400 mark two extra occasions over the subsequent a number of years and held the world file till 2009 when Germany’s Paul Biedermann lowered the mark to three:40.07 on the world championships in Rome in 2009, a file that also stands.

Something else that has aged nicely is Australia’s popularity for holding large sporting occasions.

After the plaudits have been in for Sydney 2000, Australia picked up main occasions such because the 2003 Rugby World Cup, the 2006 and 2018 Commonwealth Games, the 2015 Cricket World Cup and in 2023 will co-host with New Zealand soccer’s Women’s World Cup.

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Dennis Passa lined the Sydney 2000 Games for The Associated Press amongst his seven Olympic assignments.

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More AP sports activities: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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