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Delhi 2010 will have a unique spin: Australian Chef de Mission

SYDNEY:  Australia's Commonwealth Games 2010 Delhi Chef de Mission Mr. Steve Moneghetti has said the organisers should be congratulated and not castigated. A former Commonwealth Games champion marathon runner, he has encouraged Australia's team to cast aside fears about Delhi and embrace the October multi-sports event.

Mr. Moneghetti was bullish about the Delhi Games. “People ask me ‘Oh, they're way behind’. They're actually going fine from an Indian perspective,” he said. “It's just internationally that we're all worried. It will have a quite unique spin on it and that will make it a really cultural experience.”

Mr. Moneghetti said all athletes should treasure their Indian experience. “I think it's brave of the Commonwealth Games -- you have got to go,” he said. “It's the Commonwealth Games, it's not four nations... there are 72 countries represented in the Commonwealth and we need to embrace that.

“For most countries that go, it's not about winning medals, it's about being a welcome part of the Commonwealth and enjoying that cultural experience. So to have them in India, it's just fantastic. Rather than close in or be scared and that ‘We're losing the Commonwealth brand’, we are actually taking it out and exposing it to another part of the world, which is a fantastic thing.”