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Melbourne – The Ultimate City in the World!

Melbourne holds an unenviable reputation of being the Cultural Capital of Australia. But there is much more to the city than just being the country’s ‘cultural capital’. The city is sports mad. Melbourne has therefore been appropriately named as “The Sporting Capital of the World”.  It can be said that Melbourne is undoubtedly the Ultimate Sports City in the world.

This year Melbourne has been bestowed with the 2014 SportBusiness Ultimate Sports City award. It has been presented the award in large city category. Melbourne has won the award for the second consecutive time. Apart from this, the premier Australian city has also been acknowledged as a World Leader in Sports Venues and Event Strategy. These accolades were presented at a glittering ceremony in Turkey.

Even the Government of Victoria considers major sporting events as key to Melbourne’s growth and prosperity and remains steadfast in its commitment to invest in a big way to develop world-class sporting venues and facilities and constantly securing new sporting events.

It’s a rare feat for Melbourne to be named a five-time winner of the Ultimate Sports City award, including a thrice winner in the overall category. Melbourne has emerged as a prominent sporting city in the world. It has hosted many sporting events for sports lovers of all kinds. Some of the recent famous sporting events that the city has hosted include 2013 British Lions tour, 2013 Liverpool FC, Australian Open tennis and Melbourne Cup Carnival. The city is now all set to host the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup.

While announcing the SportBusiness Ultimate Sports City, Rachael Church-Sanders, Head Judge, said that Melbourne has been a proud winner of the Ultimate Sports City awars in 2006, 2008 and 2010. It has also emerged runner up in 2012. He said that though Melbourne continues to be in the second place overall, it has become the Best Sports City in the entire Southern Hemisphere and has attained the first place in ‘Large’ cities category. Terming it as excellent achievement, he said that Melbourne’s profile continues to raise while it keeps on delivering major sporting events and maintains its position at the top in the Ultimate Sports City rankings year after year.

Melbourne has a longstanding sporting history. The city has hosted most important sporting events of Australia for the past several decades. The city’s sporting history can only be judged by this. Melbourne was the first city to host an Olympic Games in the southern hemisphere.  The Olympics Games were then held in 1956. Later, the city also hosted the Commonwealth Games in 2006. Melbourne hosts three major global sporting events every year. These include the Australian Formula One Grand Prix, the Melbourne Cup horse race and the Australian Open.

Melbourne is also renowned for two popular sports – Cricket and Football. The Melbourne Cricket Ground, a famous sporting venue which now finds mention on the Australian National Heritage List, has hosted the first ever Test Cricket match in 1877. Melbourne has also been hosting the Australian Football League football matches since the 1850s. The football has ever since become quite popular and become a multi-million dollar industry. Five weekly matches are held during the season with an average of 40,000 fans attending it.

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