Ioc Head In Brisbane For 1St Time Since City Awarded Games

International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, left, gestures as he holds foil during fencing exhibition at the Olympics Unleashed session at the Yeronga Park Sports Centre in Brisbane, Australia, Saturday, May 7, 2022. Bach was in Brisbane on Saturday for the first time since the Queensland state capital was awarded the 2032 Olympics. (Jason O'Brien/AAP Image via AP)
International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, left, gestures as he holds foil during fencing exhibition at the Olympics Unleashed session at the Yeronga Park Sports Centre in Brisbane, Australia, Saturday, May 7, 2022. Bach was in Brisbane on Saturday for the first time since the Queensland state capital was awarded the 2032 Olympics. (Jason O'Brien/AAP Image via AP)
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BRISBANE, Australia (AP) — IOC president Thomas Bach was in Brisbane on Saturday for the first time since the Queensland state capital was awarded the 2032 Olympics.

Bach flew into Australia last weekend to attend a testimonial dinner for outgoing Australian Olympic Committee president John Coates and spent this past week visiting several Pacific island countries.

“These Olympic Games will not only be Games in Australia, for Australia,” Bach said. “These will be Olympic Games with the whole Pacific region. You can see the enthusiasm and the anticipation (is) already at a very high level.”

Bach, flanked by IOC coordination commission chair Kirsty Coventry, joined an “Olympics Unleashed" session at Yeronga State High School in south Brisbane. Queensland was the first state to adopt the program in which Olympic athletes engage with students to encourage future sporting stars.

“Being witnesses to one of these sessions is really encouraging,” Bach said. “It’s a great anticipation of these games, Brisbane 2032. They’re all excited, and they’re all motivated. It’s really a great feeling of Olympic spirit.”

Brisbane was awarded the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games last July after the International Olympic Committee rubber-stamped the Australian city as host. The city had been installed as the preferred candidates five months earlier.

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