2000 Summer Olympics

Template:Olympics infobox The Games of the XXVII Olympiad were held in 2000 in Sydney, Australia. Sydney was elected in 1993 above Beijing, Berlin, Istanbul and Manchester.




Although the Opening Ceremony was not scheduled until September 15, the football competitions began with preliminary matches on September 13.

Day 1 - September 15

In a long opening cermony, Australia presented itself and its celebrities to the world, with about three billion watching the show. They saw a record 199 nations enter the stadium, the only missing IOC member being the suspended Afghanistan. Most remarkable was the entering of North and South Korea as one team, using a specially designed flag. The two teams would compete separately, however. Four athletes from East Timor also marched in the parade of nations. Although the country-to-be had no National Olympic Committee then, they were allowed to compete under the Olympic Flag. The Governor-General, Sir William Deane, opened the games.

The ceremonies concluded with the lighting of the Olympic Flame. Former Australian women Olympic champions brought the torch through the stadium, handing it over to Cathy Freeman, who lit the flame in the cauldron. A hot favourite for the 400m title, Freeman is a major role model for Aborigines in Australia.

Day 2 - September 16

Missing image
Gold medalist Nancy Johnson (center) of the U.S., raises her hands with silver medalist Cho-Hyun Kang (left), of Korea, and bronze winner Jing Gao (right), of China, during the first medal ceremony of the 2000 Olympic Games.

The first medals of the Games were awarded in the women's 10 meter air rifle competition, which was won by Nancy Johnson of the United States.

The Triathlon made its Olympic debut with the women's race. Set in the surroundings of the Sydney Opera House, Brigitte McMahon of Switzerland swam, cycled and ran to the first gold medal in the sport, beating the favoured home athletes.

The first star of the Games was Ian Thorpe. The 17-year-old Australian first set a new World Record in the 400m freestyle final before competing in an exciting 4 x 100 m freestyle final. Swimming the last leg, Thorpe passed the leading Americans and arrived in a new World Record time, two tenths of a second ahead of the Americans. In the same event for women, the Americans also broke World Record, finishing ahead of the Netherlands and Sweden.

IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch, at his last Olympics, had to leave for home, as his wife was severely ill. Upon arrival, his wife had already passed away. Samaranch returned to Sydney four days later. The Olympic flag was flown at half-staff during the period as a sign of respect to Samaranch's wife.

Day 3 - September 17

Canadian Simon Whitfield sprinted away in the last 100m of the men's triathlon, becoming the inaugural winner in the event.

On the cycling track, Robert Bartko beat fellow German Jens Lehmann in the individual pursuit, setting a new Olympic Record. Leontien Zijlaard-van Moorsel set a World Record in the semi-finals the same event for women.

In the swimming pool, American Tom Dolan beat the World record in the 400m medley, successfully defending the title he won in Atlanta four years prior. Dutchwoman Inge de Bruijn also clocked a new World Record, beating her own time in the 100m butterfly final to win by more than a second.

Day 4 - September 18

The main event for the Australians on the fourth day of the Games was the 200m freestyle. Dutchman Pieter van den Hoogenband had broken the World Record in the semi-finals, taking it from the new Australian hero Ian Thorpe, who came close to the World Record in his semi-final heat. As the final race finished, Van den Hoogenband's time was exactly the same as in the semi-finals, finishing ahead of Thorpe by only half a second.

China won the gold medal in the men's team all-around gymnastics competition, after being the runner-up in the previous two Olympics. The other medals were taken by Ukraine and Russia, respectively.

Zijlaard-van Moorsel lived up to the expectations set by her world record in cycling in the semis by winning the gold medal. The title completed her return to the sport after a long break because of anorexia nervosa.

Day 9 - September 23

By rowing in the winning coxed four, Steve Redgrave of Great Britain became a member of a select group who had won gold medals at five consecutive Olympics.

Day 10 - September 25

Australian Cathy Freeman won the 400 metre final in front of a jubilant Sydney crowd at the Olympic Stadium. The race was tipped to be a major attraction of Sydney Games between Freeman and France's Marie-Jos Perec. But Perec left Sydney before the race even began, which left many International commentators and fans disappointed. Perec vowed never to return to Sydney again. Freeman finished the Race ahead of Lorraine Graham of Jamaica and Katharine Merry of Great Britain, which delighted Australian sporting fans and commentators alike.

Day 13 - September 28

The Canadian flag at athletes' village is lowered to half-staff as Canadian athletes pay tribute to former prime minister Pierre Trudeau after hearing of his passing in Montreal. (Because of the time difference, it was September 29 in Sydney when Trudeau passed away)

Day 15 - September 30

Cameroon won a historic gold medal over Spain in the Men's Olympic Football Final at the Olympic Stadium.

Day 16 - October 1

IOC President Juan Antonio Samaranch declared at the Closing Ceremony, "I am proud and happy to proclaim that you have presented to the world the best Olympic Games ever." The Games were then handed over to the city of their birthplace, Athens, where they would again take place in 2004. The ceremony concluded with a huge fireworks display on Sydney Harbour.


See the medal winners, ordered by sport:

Medal count

Top medal-collecting nations:
Template:2000 Summer Olympics medal count

See also:


Articles about Sydney Summer Olympics by nation:

Media coverage

The games were covered by the following broadcasters:

One of the more notable parts of the media coverage of the games was the two-hour nightly broadcast of "The Dream," a comedy talk show discussing the past day's events, presented by Australian comedic duo Roy and HG. The show was broadcast internationally, and featured a wombat mascot, (named Fatso the Fat-Arsed Wombat), who became significantly more popular than the official mascots Syd, Ollie and Millie. Their commentary on the men's gymnastics was also entertaining.

Running up to the games, a lesser-known Australian comedy satire The Games was broadcast in Australia only. It featured a spoof of the issues, and events that the top-level organisers and bureaucrats suffered in the lead up to the games.

NBC presented over 400+ hours on their main and sister stations, CNBC and MSNBC. The downside of the American coverage was that it was presented on tape delay rather than live due to the 15-hour time difference. NBC remedied this error in their 2004 coverage by presenting live coverage throughout the night and early morning, and showing replays in prime time.

Perhaps, the most poignant part of the media coverage of the games came in Canada. On September 28, the CBC was airing the Olympics when the network's chief correspondent, Peter Mansbridge, interrupted it to break news to Canadians that Pierre Elliott Trudeau had died. People in Canada that wanted to see the Olympics between then and the closing ceremonies had to turn to TSN because the CBC was broadcasing news coverage related to the passing and state funeral of the former prime minister.


Bodies responsible for the Olympics

A number of quasi-government bodies were responsible for the construction, organisation and execution of the Sydney Games. These included:

  • SOCOG the Sydney Organising Committee for the Olympic Games, primarily responsible for the staging of the Games
  • OCA the Olympic Coordination Authority, primarily responsible for construction and oversight
  • ORTA the Olympic Roads and Transport Authority
  • SOBO the Sydney Olympic Broadcasting Organisation (nominally part of SOCOG)

These organisations worked closely together and with other bodies such as:

  • the International Olympic Committee (or IOC)
  • the Australian Olympic Committee (or AOC)
  • the other 197 National Olympic Committees (or NOCs)
  • the 33 International Sporting Federations (or IFs)
  • all three levels of Australian government (federal, state and local)
  • dozens of official sponsor and hundreds of official supplier companies

These bodies are often collectively referred to as the "Olympic Family".

Organisation of the Paralympics

Organisation of the 2000 Summer Paralympics was the responsibility of SPOC the Sydney Paralympic Organising Committee. However much of the planning and operation of the Paralympic Games was outsourced to SOCOG such that most operational programmes planned both the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Other Olympic events

Organisation of the Olympic Games included not only the actual sporting events but also the management (and sometimes construction) of the sporting venues and surrounding precincts, the organisation of the Sydney Olympic Arts Festival and Olympic torch relay.

Phases of the Olympic project

The staging of the Olympics were treated as a project on a vast scale, with the project broken into several broad phases:

  • 1993 to 1996 positioning
  • 1997 going operational
  • 1998 procurement/venuisation
  • 1999 testing/refinement
  • 2000 - implementation
  • 2001 - post implementation and wind-down

SOCOG organisational design

Missing image
SOCOG organisational structure circa 1998 - five groups and 33 divisions reporting to the CEO are organised primarily along functional lines with only a limited number of divisions (eg Interstate Football and Villages) anticipating a venue focussed design.
Missing image
SOCOG organisational structure circa 1999 - functional divisions and precinct/venue streams are organised in a matrix structure linked to the Main Operations Centre (MOC). Some functions such as Project Management (in the Games Coordination group) continue to exist largely outside this matrix structure.

The internal organisation of SOCOG evolved over the phases of the project and changed, sometimes radically, several times.

In late 1998 the design was principally functional. The top two tiers below the CEO consisted of five groups (managed by Group General Managers and the Deputy CEO) and twenty divisions (managed by divisional General Managers), which in turn were further broken up into programmes and sub programmes or projects.

In 1999 functional areas (FAs) broke up into geographic precinct and venue teams (managed by Precinct Managers and Venue Managers) with functional area staff reporting to both the FA manager and the venue manager. Ie, SOCOG moved to a matrix structure. The Interstate Football division extant in 1998 was the first of these geographically based venue teams.

See also

External links

Olympic Games
Summer Olympic Games
1896 | 1900 | 1904 | 1906¹ | 1908 | 1912 | (1916)² | 1920 | 1924 | 1928 | 1932 | 1936 | (1940)² | (1944)² | 1948 | 1952 | 1956 | 1960 | 1964 | 1968 | 1972 | 1976 | 1980 | 1984 | 1988 | 1992 | 1996 | 2000 | 2004 | 2008 | 2012 | 2016 | 2020
Winter Olympic Games
1924 | 1928 | 1932 | 1936 | (1940)² | (1944)² | 1948 | 1952 | 1956 | 1960 | 1964 | 1968 | 1972 | 1976 | 1980 | 1984 | 1988 | 1992 | 1994 | 1998 | 2002 | 2006 | 2010 | 2014 | 2018
¹Not currently recognised as official by the IOC.     ²Cancelled due to war.
bg:XXVII летни олимпийски игри

de:Olympische Sommerspiele 2000 et:2000. aasta suveolmpiamngud es:Juegos Olmpicos de Sydney 2000 fr:Jeux Olympiques d't de 2000 id:Olimpiade Sydney 2000 it:XXVII Olimpiade nl:Olympische Zomerspelen 2000 ja:シドニーオリンピック no:Sommer-OL 2000 pl:Letnie Igrzyska Olimpijskie 2000 pt:Jogos Olmpicos de Vero de 2000 fi:2000 kesolympialaiset sv:Olympiska sommarspelen 2000 zh:2000年夏季奥林匹克运动会


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