2026 Commonwealth Games to Victoria, Gippsland to play a major role

Victoria will host the Commonwealth Games in 2026 with Gippsland to play a key role.

Gregor Mactaggart

Victoria will host the 2026 Commonwealth Games with Gippsland to play a major role.

Premier Daniel Andrews said four regional hubs would be established in Gippsland, Bendigo, Ballarat and Geelong.

Each regional hub will have its own athletes’ village and sport program following the opening ceremony at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Gippsland has been pencilled in as the venue for the following sports:

  • Badminton
  • Twenty20 cricket
  • Rugby sevens
  • Cycling (Gippsland to Bendigo)

Mr Andrews said the confirmation of Victoria as the 2026 venue by the Commonwealth Games Federation was a significant moment.

“It’s a great honour to have Victoria chosen as the host venue for the 2026 Commonwealth Games – we can’t wait to welcome the world to all of our state,” Mr Andrews said.

“The Commonwealth Games in regional Victoria is great for jobs, hospitality and our economy.”

Commonwealth Games Federation president Dame Louise Martin said it was absolutely delighted to award the 2026 event to Victoria.

“Commonwealth Games Australia and the Victorian Government have set out a bold and innovative vision that provides an exciting new blueprint for hosting our major multi-sport event,” she said.

The state government estimates the 2026 Games will contribute more than $3 billion to Victoria’s economy, creating more than 600 full-time equivalent jobs before the Games, 3900 jobs during the Games and a further 3000 jobs beyond the Closing Ceremony.

Regional Development Minister Mary-Anne Thomas said the event would provide the opportunity for regional Victoria to shine on a world stage.

“We’ve always known the value of regional Victoria and the 2026 Commonwealth Games will provide a chance to showcase all we have to offer to the world,” she said.

Beyond the field of play, Victoria 2026 will feature a program of cultural and business engagement experiences that bring to life the Commonwealth Games values of humanity, equality and destiny – and embracing the state’s diversity and rich cultural history.

A Victoria-wide program of live sites and activations will ensure visitors are welcomed in every corner of the state, with the Queen’s Baton Relay to traverse the regions in the weeks leading up to the Opening Ceremony.

Sports Minister Martin Pakula said the Commonwealth Games, which will be the first held in Victoria since Melbourne 2006, would leave a lasting legacy.

“Hosting the Commonwealth Games in four years’ time will deliver major benefits, particularly the regions, and leave a lasting legacy for the growth and development of sport throughout Victoria,” he said.