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Fennell thanks Delhi
Friday, 15 October 2010

Speech of CGF President, Michael Fennell, at the Closing Ceremony of the XIX Commonwealth Games

Tonight we bring to a close the XIX Commonwealth Games, which have been celebrated with some truly outstanding performances from the athletes of the Commonwealth in this wonderful and exciting city of Delhi.

We have been privileged to be a part of an event that has captured the attention of the world with the athletes of the Commonwealth demonstrating once again their skills on the field of play and the power of sport to unify our diverse personalities and cultures.

As the curtain falls on the magnificent staging of the XIX  Games, let us all rejoice on what has been a truly memorable celebration of Commonwealth sport.

Over the past 11 days we have witnessed the performances of Athletes from 71 countries and territories competing intensely for 826 medals, with over  75 Games records were broken, world records in Para Swimming and several athletes achieving their best ever with national records, all in a spirit of friendship.

We salute all athletes, but especially the Indian athletes for their magnificent performances. We also salute all 71 CGAs, the officials accompanying the delegations, the sports technical officials and all assistants for the their outstanding work.

The organisation of these games has been characterized by  many challenges and  the organizing committee and staff, led by Mr. Suresh Kalmadi, and the people of Delhi have successfully overcome those obstacles and delivered a truly outstanding event.

We congratulate and thank all concerned for their dedication and commitment to the success of these Games. In particular I would again pay tribute to the 22,000 volunteers who have not only assisted our teams and delegates but have also left an indelible mark of their kindness and friendship to all. Thank you volunteers.

A large number of people and organisations have contributed to the success of these Games and I would like to highlight the significant support by the Governments of India and of Delhi.

Delhi has now been left with a rich legacy, not only with modern world class venues for many sports and improved city infrastructure, but perhaps more importantly, with the development of their human potential in organising a major international sports event.

It is our belief that the world will now have a better understanding of this wonderful country and its potential, and at the same time India will have gained a valuable insight of the wider world.

The spectators and people of Delhi have been just simply great. You have attended all sports in large numbers consistently throughout the games and have provided the necessary support and motivation to all participating athletes. The security, medical, transport and all other services have been of the highest quality, all of which contributed enormously to the success of the Games.

And now we set our sights on 2014 and Glasgow, Scotland with the knowledge and experience derived from these Games and with the standard of excellence that has been established. It will be a hard act to follow, but we have every confidence that the bar will again be raised in 2014. Good luck to Lord Smith and his Glasgow team for a successful XX Games in 2014.

Our memories of Delhi and the hosting of the XIX Commonwealth Games will leave an indelible footprint on our minds and in our hearts as we continue our pursuit of those values of Humanity – Destiny and Equality through sport..

Delhi – you have delivered a truly exceptional Games and, above all, a wonderful experience. Thank you Delhi.  


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