Gold Coast puts on a show as Commonwealth Games get underway

The 2010 Commonwealth Games was also not too different as a 16,000 capacity Major Dhanychand Stadium was fully sold out with last tickets getting sold more than 3 ½ months before the event started.

But the real star of the festivities was Migaloo, a giant inflatable white whale that floated above spectators and performers alike as red confetti was showered on the stadium.

BREAKING: Police have clashed with protesters demonstrating outside the Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremony at Carrara Stadium.

The Games baton arrived in a turquoise campervan and was delivered to Games president Louise Martin, who struggled before opening it and handing a message inside to Prince Charles.

The 2018 Gold Coast which will feature more than 6000 athletes from 71 nations to compete for 275 gold and medals will begin on Wednesday at the Carrara stadium.

Prince Charles, opening the 21st edition of the Commonwealth Games on behalf of his mother Queen Elizabeth II, said "sport can be a great force for good which can help create harmony between communities".

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While McAllister is not against that, he believes the players manager Jurgen Klopp has at his disposal are good enough. And his strike partner is optimistic that he can "make the difference" against Pep Guardiola's side.

Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games will hold the largest ever Para-sport programme.

Opening ceremony artistic director David Zolkwer said the ceremony was inclusive and "how, as the indigenous people of Australia tell us, we are all custodians of the same world".

But with respect to those who bring much-needed stardust, it is the sprinkling of athletes from so-called lesser nations who best embody the uniqueness of the Commonwealth Games - and encapsulate why it continues to justify its place on the sporting calendar. "Made me feel twice as honoured to be carrying the Singapore flag and representing Singapore at the Games".

Banjul is the capital of west African nation, The Gambia, which was a late entry to the Gold Coast Games.

Nigeria took part in the boxing event at the Vancouver 1954 Commonwealth Games.

Only South Africa's Durban had bid for the 2022 event but the coastal city was stripped of the privilege previous year after after a series of missed deadlines and financial problems. They put forth a brilliant composition of sound and dance that lived up to the Commonwealth Games Federation's motto of friendship.

  • Regina Holmes