Games closing ceremony was flawed, organisers admit


"Having received such a positive response to the opening ceremony on the Gold Coast earlier this month, we share GOLDOC's disappointment at the level of criticism targeted at specific aspects of last night's ceremony", Jack Morton managing director Helen Graney said. They made decisions not to have athletes enter the stadium.

GOLDOC has released a statement today apologising for a major planning error.

He said again that a mistake was made and that the athletes came in as part of the pre-show entertainment.

"GOLDOC appreciates that this decision therefore did not provide the opportunity for the television audiences to share this moment".

Spectators began streaming out of the Carrara Stadium before the ceremony finished, leaving the venue seemingly half-empty when the lights were turned back on.

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However GOLDOC had an explanation.

"I felt elated when Jamaican Athletics Technical Director said this is about the first time Nigerian athletes are being professional".

"To be brutally honest, most of the athletes left during the ceremony".

The Gold Coast also broken new ground with Women's Rugby Sevens, Beach Volleyball and Para Triathlon medals awarded for the first time, as part of the largest integrated sports program in Commonwealth Games history.

They have seen athletes strive to exceed expectations and, in giving their best performances, they have made their home countries proud.

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The needle controversy simply refuses to go away from the Indian contingent which competed in the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games.

On Monday morning, a contrite Games chairman Peter Beattie apologised for the closing ceremony after athletes were left out of the broadcast, earning a scathing on-air broadside from the Channel Seven hosts.

"Way too long, and dare I say it a little self indulgent. We got that wrong", he tweeted on Monday.

Ric Birch, who was head of ceremonies for the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games and the 1982 Brisbane Commonwealth Games, said: "I'm certainly surprised that Seven did not raise the issue of the athletes' entrance prior to the closing ceremony. The people who have been critical are also justified", Beattie said. "We got that wrong". We missed out on all of that.

"I was astounded, I honestly thought she was joking", Ms Bernetzke said.

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"I would have liked to see more of the athletes but other than that, I think they did a really great job", she said.