The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Delhi needs an upgrade for 2010

New Delhi: Commonwealth Games officials on Wednesday asked New Delhi to improve its sporting facilities and build new ones if the Indian capital wanted to hold the 2010 event.

“New Delhi has the adequate infrastructure to host the Games but it needs to be upgraded and new venues have to be built,” said Michael Hooper of the Games evaluation committee after a three-day inspection here.

“I am confident this will be done because the bid has the support of the Indian government.”

The Commonwealth Games Federation will meet in Jamaica in November to choose between New Delhi and the Canadian city of Hamilton as hosts of the 2010 Games.

“I can’t say which is the better bid,” said Hooper, whose committee inspected facilities at Hamilton last month. “All I know is that we have two quality bids. It will all depend on how the vote goes.”

New Delhi’s chances of beating Hamilton increased last month after the Canadian city of Vancouver won the right to host the 2010 Winter Olympics.

Convention dictates that one country will not host two major sporting events the same year.

The Commonwealth Games have been hosted in Asia just once, in Kuala Lumpur in 1998.

Canada held the 1994 event in Victoria, Manchester hosted it last year, while the 2006 edition will be held in Melbourne.

To a question on the games being rotated among select countries, Hooper said the Commonwealth movement was seeing a change since 1994.

“It is an issue of gigantism... Many of the commonwealth countries like the Falklands are smaller. Manchester had 17 programmes but Melbourne (in 2006) will have 16.

“The CGF members, however, feel that the disciplines included should meet certain benchmark in terms of competition size and depth.”

On whether cricket will be re-introduced in the Commonwealth Games, IOA president Suresh Kalmadi said those matters would be discussed only if and after New Delhi wins the bid.

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