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    Wimmera Development Association chief executive Chris Sounness.

Plan to benefit from Commonwealth Games

A Wimmera development leader has encouraged sporting organisations to consider all possibilities after a State Government decision to include non-competition hosting regions in a Commonwealth Games Victorian showcase.

The State Government has established an initial expression-of-information process that will ask councils, peak bodies, traditional owners, cultural organisations and businesses to submit ideas to help showcase Victoria’s regions. 

Suggestions for Games-adjacent cultural programs, indigenous engagement, sporting-heat hosting and training would be considered from all parties from any Victorian region, especially if the region was not an official Games competition hub. 

Wimmera Development Association executive director Chris Sounness said opportunities were also available to individual sporting clubs and he encouraged people to be proactive to establish or reaffirm their international sporting-club connections. 

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“Often these opportunities are about how clubs can work with international sporting-club associations, and often it is about just reaching out and realising connections with other countries,” he said. 

“Whenever connections are already in place, it always makes things easier and while this is one opportunity, there will be lots more that come from such connections too.”

Mr Sounness said while the State Government expression of interest form was important, clubs could expedite the process through a mixture of informal and formal dialogue with international organisations. 

“Clubs that do that, will do better in this regard than clubs that don’t. Reach out to clubs overseas – it won’t do any harm,” he said.  

“Especially lawn-bowls clubs and associations. Horsham district has some really good lawn-bowl facilities that might be possibilities to host pre-Games training and tournaments.”

The State Government announced its 2026 Commonwealth Games regional showcase would extend beyond official sporting competition to include warm-up tournaments, training camps, live sites and activations in towns and cities across Victoria. 

State Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Martin Pakula said the government wanted every region to have an opportunity to be involved in the Games. 

“That is why we want to hear from local communities about how to best showcase their region,” he said. 

An official early expression of interest form is available online at

The entire April 27, 2022 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire April 27, 2022 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!