Sydney Olympics Minister Praises Beijing

Michael Knight, Sydney’s Olympics minister, says that Beijing has a strong bid for the 2008 Summer Games and Australia would be willing to help if China won the bid.

Knight told a news conference that “Beijing of course has an excellent bid for the 2008 Games and I have no doubt if they are lucky enough to be selected by the IOC (International Olympic Committee), then Beijing would host an excellent Games.”

Knight, impressed by China’s moves to crack down on the use of banned performance-enhancing drugs, said “I’m impressed with the efforts they’re making at a national level to clamp down on any efforts by individual competitors or coaches to cheat and we are doing the same in Sydney and we’re working together in that process”.

Beijing narrowly lost out to Sydney in 1993 for the 2000 Olympics because of concerns over China’s human rights record. It’s now the frontrunner in the race for the 2008 Summer Games, with Toronto considered to be in second place.