30 April 2010
The ceremony, held on April 28, placed Melbourne ahead of Singapore, London, Berlin and Sydney as the world’s sporting capital and is the third consecutive time the city has won the award.
In November 2009, Melbourne also won gold in the Sports City category at the SportBusiness Sports Event Management Awards, held at Lords Cricket Ground in London.
Victoria’s renowned international sporting events include the Australian Open Tennis, Formula 1 Grand Prix, Boxing Day cricket test and Spring Racing Carnival. In 2010 the state will host the UCI Road World Championships and the Australia vs New Zealand Bledisloe Cup match, while 2011 will see Victoria home to the prestigious Presidents Cup golf tournament.
Twenty-five cities were short-listed for the award, and were ranked according to criteria including the number of annual sports events held, venues, transport, government support, security, public interest and quality of life.
An £220 million redevelopment of Melbourne Park, home of the Australian Open, and a £18 million upgrade to the Melbourne Cricket Ground will begin shortly and the £162 million purpose-built rectangular stadium, AAMI Park, will open on May 7.
Victorian Sports Minister James Merlino, speaking to Melbourne’s Herald Sun newspaper said the award cemented the city’s status.
"We are the sporting capital of the world," he said.
"Victorians love their sport and this award once again confirms what Victorians have known for a long time."