1998 Commonwealth Games
The 1998 Commonwealth Games (Malay: Sukan Komanwel 1998), officially known as the XVI Commonwealth Games (Malay: Sukan Komanwel ke-16), was a multi-sport event held in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. The 1998 games were the first held in an Asian country and the last Commonwealth Games of the 20th century. This was also the first time the games took place in a nation with a head of state other than the Head of the Commonwealth, and the first time the games were held in a non-English speaking nation. For the first time ever, the games included team sports. The other bid from the 1998 games came from Adelaide in Australia.
|Host city||Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia|
(Together we'll glorify this moment)
|Events||214 in 15 sports|
|Opening ceremony||11 September|
|Closing ceremony||21 September|
|Officially opened by||Prime Minister of Malaysia Mahathir Mohamad|
|Officially closed by||Elizabeth II|
|Athlete's Oath||Shalin Zulkifli|
|Queen's Baton Final Runner||Koh Eng Tong|
|Main venue||National Stadium, Bukit Jalil, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia|
Malaysia is the eighth nation to host the Commonwealth Games after Canada, England, Australia, New Zealand, Wales, Jamaica and Scotland. The games was held from 11 to 21 September 1998, although several events had commenced from 7 September 1998. Around 3638 athletes from 69 Commonwealth member nations participated at the games which featured 214 events in 15 sports with 34 of them collected medals. The games was opened by the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Mahathir Mohammad and closed by Head of the Commonwealth, Elizabeth II at the Bukit Jalil National Stadium.
The final medal tally was led by Australia, followed by Canada, England and host Malaysia. Several games records were broken during the games. With little or no controversy at all, the games were deemed generally successful, with the rising standards of competition amongst the Commonwealth member nations.
|1998 Commonwealth Games Bidding Results|
The 16th Commonwealth Games opening ceremony took place on 11 September 1998 at 17:30 MST (UTC+08:00). Contrary to tradition, the games were not officially opened by the Malaysian head of state, Yang di Pertuan Agong Tuanku Jaafar because he was unable to arrive to the stadium in time. Instead, the Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tun Dr. Mahathir bin Mohamad, opened the games. The venue for the opening and closing ceremonies was the newly built National Stadium Bukit Jalil, a 100,000-spectator capacity stadium. The theme song "Malaysiaku Gemilang" was sung by Malaysian pop singers Norzila Binti Haji Aminuddin, Shahrul Anuar Zain, Siti Roziana Binti Zain, Shaheila binti Abdul Majid, Amy Mastura Binti Suhaimi, Ning Baizura binti Sheikh Hamzah, and Siti Nurhaliza Binti Tarudin—and many other Malaysian singers also performed. The games featured 15 sports with 3638 athletes as 69 teams were represented.
The theme of the opening ceremony was 'Unity towards Progress', which was conveyed through dance, music, and intricate human graphics. Malaysian schoolgirls unfurled hundreds of colourful umbrellas, and brightly attired performers danced. Approximately 5,000 volunteers displayed coloured cards which depicted sporting images, flags and messages that heralded the first Games in Asia in the 68 years since their inception. They created pictures of flags of the Commonwealth nations, scenes of Malaysian lifestyle, and depictions of Malaysian achievements just by changing the colour of their hand-held cards. The Singaporean delegation was jeered by the crowd during the parade of nations.
The Queen's message was delivered in the Queen's Baton, which arrived in the main square of Kuala Lumpur on elephant-back at the start of the ceremonies, and was run in relay to the stadium while the athletes marched in. 1978 Commonwealth Games badminton gold medal winner Sylvia Ng took the last lap with the baton and handed it off to Koh Eng Tong, a weightlifter who won a gold medal in weightlifting for Malaya in the 1950 British Empire Games, to take the final few feet to Prince Edward.
The end of the ceremony featured fireworks of various colours and shapes—forming hoops, flowers, and fountains. The opening ceremony's broadcast concluded at 00:00 MST, later than the time originally planned at 23:00 MST.
The logo of the 1998 Commonwealth Games is an image of the national flower of Malaysia, the hibiscus (the bunga raya), the first games logo to introduce the colour yellow. (All previous logos had been red, white and blue to reflect the colours of the British Union Flag). The red, blue, white and yellow colours represents the colours of the Malaysian national flag and Malaysia as a confident, young, dynamic nation. The yellow pollens represent the six regions of the world that includes the 68 Commonwealth member nations.
The official mascot of the 1998 Commonwealth Games is an Orang Utan named Wira (Malay for "warrior" or "hero"). It is said that the Orang Utan is the largest and probably the most intelligent primate in Asia which lives in the tropical rainforests of Malaysia. The adoption of Orang Utan as a games' mascot is to represent the friendly personality of Malaysia as the games' host as well as the charm, intelligence, and sporting ability of the participating athletes.
The host nation was thrilled at achieving its best ever haul of ten gold medals which has since been surpassed by its achievement in the 2010 Commonwealth Games, where Malaysia won twelve gold medals.
The 16th Commonwealth Games host newly introduced team sports of cricket, field hockey, netball and rugby sevens and individuals sports of ten-pin bowling and squash, while of athletics, badminton, boxing, cycling, gymnastics, lawn bowls, shooting, swimming and weightlifting to make a total of 15 sports contested.
In front of 20,000-fans at the Petaling Jaya Stadium, rugby sevens in particular were an enormous success with New Zealand collecting its 100th Commonwealth Games medal with a 21–12 win over plucky Fiji, (the reigning world champions). Man of the match was the giant Jonah Lomu who had worked tirelessly during the 10-minutes each way final.
Led by veteran star David Campese, Australia took the bronze beating Samoa 33–12.
In the squash event many had anticipated a close match between Michelle Martin and Sarah Fitz-Gerald who had both comfortably won their respective semi-finals. Fitz-Gerald had won the previous two years world open and Michelle the three prior to that and so it was with some surprise to many that Martin took the gold in three straight sets 9–0, 9–6, 9–5. Fitz-Gerald did avenge this defeat in the final of the world championship later that year, in what many people regard as the greatest women's final ever, coming back from 8–2 down in the fifth to retain her title.
Martin also teamed up with Craig Rowland to take the commonwealth mixed doubles gold.
The games concluded on 21 September 1998. At the centre of the field, two "sports sculpture" performers rise gradually and show different athletic gestures slowly in the air, conveying the noble Commonwealth Games spirit. Other Malaysian dance were performed while the Main Stage in tune with the rhythm of the song form was primarily a Malaysia Day and Hari Merdeka entered the stadium, flew around the athletes and danced with all athletes in the stadium and millionaire marshals in tune with the rhythm of the song of folk music ethnics based in Kuala Lumpur forming a spectacular dance circle.
Finally, Malaysian festivals performers in festive clothes, millionaire performers of minority ethnic groups, Malaysian dance performances, millionaire collectors of launched red silk and Petronas Towers and Kuala Lumpur Tower performers threw the Wira lucky cloud yarn strips into the stadium, interacting with the athletes. At the same time, innumerable dazzling fireworks were launched from the top of the "bowl rim". Then, numerous fireworks formed a huge circle of fireworks, symbolising the successful conclusion of 1998 Commonwealth Games.
69 teams were represented at the 1998 Games.
(Teams competing for the first time are shown in bold).
- Antigua and Barbuda
- British Virgin Islands
- Cayman Islands
- Cook Islands
- Falkland Islands
- Isle of Man
- New Zealand
- Norfolk Island
- Northern Ireland
- Papua New Guinea
- Saint Helena and Dependencies
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- Sierra Leone
- Solomon Islands
- South Africa
- Sri Lanka
- The Gambia
- Trinidad and Tobago
- Turks and Caicos Islands
- National Sports Complex, Malaysia
- National Stadium, Bukit Jalil - Opening/Closing Ceremony, Athletics (Track and field)
- Putra Stadium, (Indoor) Bukit Jalil - Gymnastics
- National Aquatic Centre - Auatics (Swimming, Diving, Synchronised swimming)
- National Hockey Stadium - Hockey
- National Squash Centre—Squash
- Mini track - Athletics (Warm up and Training)
- Bukit Kiara Sports Complex
- Other venues
- Merdeka Square, Kuala Lumpur - Athletics (Marathon)
- Cheras Veledrome, Kuala Lumpur—Track cycling
- Kuala Lumpur Badminton Stadium—Badminton
- Mines Convention Centre—Weightlifting
- Shah Alam—Cycling road racing
- Malawati Stadium, Shah Alam—Boxing
- Pyramid Bowl, Sunway Pyramid, Subang Jaya—Tenpin bowling
- Petaling Jaya Stadium, Petaling Jaya—Rugby
- Langkawi International Shooting Range (Lisram) – Shooting
- PKNS Kelana Jaya - Cricket (Finals)
- Kelab Aman, Ampang - Cricket (Heats, Bronze playoff)
- Kilat club - Cricket (Heats)
- Titiwangsa Lake Garden - Athletics (Race walking (outdoor))
- Kuala Lumpur Swimming Complex, Cheras - Aquatics (Training)
- Royal Military College, Sungai Besi - Aquatics (Training), Cricket (Heats)
- Victoria Institution - Cricket (Heats)
- Rubber Research Institute, Sungai Buloh - Cricket (Heats)
- Universiti Putra Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur - Aquatics (Training)
- City Hall Youth Complex - Badminton (Training, Warm up)
- National Training Centre, Badminton Association Malaysia - (Training, Warm up)
- Selangor Badminton Hall - Badminton (Training, Warm up)
- Permata Petronas Training Centre Gymnasium, Bangi - Boxing (Training)
- Selangor Turf Club, Sungei Besi - Cricket (Training)
A total of 55 sponsors sponsored the games, including Malaysian state-owned entreprises.
- Bank Bumiputra Berhad
- Canon Inc.
- Leopex Sporting Goods
- Malaysia Airlines
- Pensonic Group
- Percetakan Nasional Malaysia Berhad
- Siemens Nixdorf Informationssysteme
- Aramas Utama Holdings
- Extol Corporation
- Grace Distribution
- NetCard Corporation
- P.K. Electronics
- Royal Selangor
- Permodalan Nasional Berhad
- Sema Group
- Teknologi Ikram
- Konsortium Perkapalan Berhad
- Pos Malaysia
- Telekom Malaysia
- TH Alliance Asia Pacific
- Genting Group
- Sime Darby
- Antah Group
- Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange
- Malaysian Industrial Development Finance Berhad
- Island & Peninsular Berhad
- Sungei Way Group
- Tenaga Nasional
- Chiyoda Corporation
- Tourism Publications Corporation
- IOI Group
- Golden Hope
Host nation (Malaysia)
|5||South Africa (RSA)||9||11||14||34|
|6||New Zealand (NZL)||8||7||20||34|
|13||Northern Ireland (NIR)||2||1||2||5|
|Trinidad and Tobago (TRI)||1||1||1||3|
|27||Sri Lanka (SRI)||0||1||1||2|
|Isle of Man (IOM)||0||1||0||1|
|32||Papua New Guinea (PNG)||0||0||1||1|
|Total (34 CGAs)||214||214||244||672|
Medals by eventEdit
|Men's cricket||South Africa||Australia||New Zealand|
Road bicycle racingEdit
|Women's 28 km individual time trial||Anna Wilson
|Men's 42 km individual time trial||Eric Wohlberg
|Women's 92 km road race||Lyne Bessette
|Men's 184 km road race||Jay Sweet
|Men's singles||Kenny Ang
Malaysia, 6046 points
|Women's singles||Cara Honeychurch
|Lai Kin Ngoh
|Men's doubles||Kenny Ang and Ben Heng
|Antoine Jones and Conrad Lister
|Michael Muir and Frank Ryan
|Women's doubles||Cara Honeychurch and Maxine Nable
|Lai Kin Ngoh and Shalin Zulkifli
|Pauline Buck and Gemma Burden
|Mixed doubles||Frank Ryan and Cara Honeychurch
|Richard Hood and Pauline Buck
|Bill Rowe and Jane Amlinger
- Roper, Alexander. "The Bidding Games: The Games Behind Malaysia's Commonwealth Games". Academia.edu. Retrieved 30 September 2013.
- Jones, Terry (12 September 1998). "Opening ceremonies were as good as they get". Edmonton Sun. Retrieved 18 August 2016.
- "Games Operation". Official website.
- "Past Commonwealth Games". CGF. Retrieved 3 October 2012.
- "Games Operations".