The online news site Inside the Games is reporting that the Commonwealth Games Federation is still trying to find a willing host to stage the games in 2026 as scheduled. The site also reports that the Commonwealth Games Federation is in direct talks with the Ontario Government in an effort to find a way the games could still proceed in 2026. “Hamilton 2026 had been the frontrunner earlier this year,“ the site reported, “with the Bid Committee and Commonwealth Sport Canada ’working exclusively’ with the CGF on staging the Games in 2026, but failed to secure Government support. The Ontario Government said it would only back a bid to stage in the Games in 2027 or later, citing its focus on the 2026 FIFA World Cup, which Canada will co-host with Mexico and the United States.”
David Leather, chief executive of CGF Partnerships said the Ontario Government has informed the CGF it is setting up a cross-departmental working group to consider the Governmental issues and possible implications for hosting the Games. Earlier in reply to a query from the Bay Observer the Premier’s Office had stated quite definitely that it would only consider a 2027 date or beyond.
According to Inside the Games, the Commonwealth Games Federation is expected to continue talks with the Ontario Government. An Adelaide bid for the 2026 Games was nixed by the South Australian Government last month. The CGF and Commonwealth Games Australia are claimed to be working on developing a hosting proposition for an alternative Australian state, which would include evaluation of the benefits and costs of holding the Games.
Now Sri Lanka has emerged as a possible contender. Its National Olympic Committee is said to be talking with that nation’s government about financial support. Sri Lankan city Hambantota bid for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, but lost to Gold Coast in Australia by 43 votes to 27.
Leather said the CGF had shared information with the National Olympic Committee of Sri Lanka over the potential budget and sport programme to help the development of their proposals.
A fourth Commonwealth Games Association has reportedly expressed an interest in hosting the Games, but the nation of the member was not revealed.