Bang for NZ's Commonwealth Games buck

14:53, Aug 04 2014
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
Lulu led the closing ceremony with some Scottish pop.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
It was a pop concert bonanza at Hampden Park as a star-studded stage lit up the athletics arena.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
Emergency services were close at hand.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
A heaving crowd gathered at Hampden Park for the closing ceremony.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
Gret skies in Glasgow are lit up by fireworks at the Commonwealth Games closing ceremony.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
It was all smiles on a cloudy day in Glasgow as thousands gathered at Hampden Park for the Commonwealth Games closing ceremony.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
Closing ceremony performers show off their dance steps.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
The closing ceremony paid tribute to Glasgow city workers who got the venues ready for the Games.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
City workers relish their moment as the Commonwealth salutes their efforts in preparing Glasgow for the Games.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
There was some traditional Scottish culture to go with the modern.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
At first glance it looked like there was an Occupy protest going on mid-ceremony, but it was all part of the act.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
A reveller relishes the party at Hampden Park.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
Two girls embrace the party spirit at the Commonwealth Games closing ceremony.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
It wouldn't be a Scottish celebration without bagpipes.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
Queensland Minister for the Commonwealth Games Jann Stuckey speaks as part of the formalities at the closing ceremony as the Games' federation banner is prepared to be given to the Gold Coast mayor.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
With the handover to Gold Coast complete, it was time for Australia singer Jessica Mauboy to rock the closing ceremony party.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
For a moment it looked like the Wiggles were getting in on the act at the closing ceremony; instead it was Australia team captain Sally Pearson.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
It wouldn't be a showcase of what to expect when the Games hit Australia without a performance from the one-and-only Kylie Minogue.
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
Go Kylie!
Commonwealth Games closing ceremony
I should be so lucky.

Alex Baumann wears a prodigious smile as he leans in for a handshake. He can afford it, after what has been a highly successful Kiwi campaign at these Commonwealth Games.

Cycling and athletics officials were likely to get a similar reception when they met with the High Performance Sport New Zealand boss, but other targeted sports such as swimming, triathlon and hockey may not to be so warmly greeted when the Glasgow debrief begins.

While the three bike disciplines - track, road and mountain - got a massive tick from Baumann, triathlon, swimming and hockey were the standout disappointments from what had been an otherwise stellar Kiwi campaign.

David Bishop
SHOESTRING SUCCESS: Kiwi gymnast David Bishop won Games bronze with little funding.

The 45 medals won in Glasgow equalled Manchester 2002 in terms of Games hauls on foreign soil, but it was the colour of the medals and the age of some of the people who won them that excited Baumann the most.

The medal breakdown was 14 gold, 14 silver and 17 bronze. Only Auckland in 1990, New Zealand's most successful Games with 58 medals, yielded more golds (17) than Glasgow. There were six golds at each of the past two Games, in Delhi and Melbourne, so 14 represented quite an improvement.

There were six golds alone from the cyclists, who received $23.16 million in the four years leading into Glasgow, by far the most of any of the Games sports.


Alex Baumann
HPSNZ BOSS: Alex Baumann.

''The medal count is nice, but it's more important where those medals are coming from,'' Baumann said.

''Bike did a great job with their 15 medals (including six gold) but taking a look at the young athletes like Sam (Webster) and Anton (Cooper), that's where we get benefit.

''Obviously bike in a very good position heading to Rio, with obviously work to do still.''

 Adrian Leat, Moira De Villiers, Jason Koster and Tim Slyfield
WINNING ON A SHOESTRING: Kiwi judokas Adrian Leat, Moira De Villiers, Jason Koster and Tim Slyfield.

Bike's funding has been set for the four-year cycle culminating in the Rio Olympics, but Baumann said there was the ability to bump it up if required.

Conversely, swimming, triathlon and hockey - three of HPSNZ's 13 targeted sports - could prepare for some hard questions.

They will have to justify why their levels should not be dropped.

''We have to be performance based,'' Baumann said.

''Some sports might go up and some might go down. That's just the way it is.''

Triathlon ($7.44 million in last four years) was medal-less when they wanted at least two, while swimming ($8.65 million in last four years) was propped up by Lauren Boyle's gold and silver, and two golds in weak fields to para-swimmer Sophie Pascoe.

''I'm sure triathlon is gutted as well, they were looking for individual and team medals. They haven't performed to the level they wanted to so we need to take a look at what's happening through the debrief,'' Baumann said.

''We can't just depend on Lauren for the whole (swimming) programme. Obviously she is important to us and is true medal potential for 2016, but we want to make sure there's depth coming through.

''We are looking at tri and swimming more for 2020, but they have to demonstrate to us they actually have athletes in the system for 2020. That's their challenge.''

Well-funded hockey and netball could also expect a few questions after limp campaigns; the women's (bronze) and men's (fourth) hockey teams crumbled under pressure as did the Silver Ferns who were hammered in the only match that mattered.

The combat sports delivered, such as judo (five medals, no funding), wrestling (two medals, no funding) and boxing (two medals, $400,000 of funding), but they would have to submit applications on a year-by-year basis for campaign funding.

''What we need to look at is how competitive those sports are on the world stage, world championships and Olympics, and take a look at applications,'' Baumann said.

''We always have to take a look at medal potential ... if we can get an edge somehow in these others sports where there is potential for medals, we should take advantage of that. But we'll have to do due diligence.''

After a successful London Olympics, where the 13 medals equalled Seoul 1988 as New Zealand's best haul, and now a very good Glasgow campaign, Baumann has set a target of 14 medals for the Rio Olympics.

As for the Commonwealth Games, Baumann was upbeat about their future.

''There's excitement about the Games again and Glasgow has done a good job. There's certainly relevance to them, which is important to us.

''After Delhi there were some doubts, but they are important and they do give our athletes experience in a multi-sport environment.''


Targeted funding sports


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $10.54 million

Medal count: 5 (1 gold, 2 silver, 2 bronze)

Summary: A pass mark with the bankers coming through in addition to some nice bonuses - Julia Ratcliffe's hammer throw silver and Zane Robertson's 5000m bronze were breakthrough results. Plenty to work with for Rio.

Rating: 6/10


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $23.16 million

Medal count: 15 (11 track, 2 mountain bike, 2 road - 6 gold, 4 silver, 5 bronze)

Summary: Met, and in some cases exceeded, high expectations against strong competition. Women's programme now needs to lift as well. Mountain biking 1-2 a pleasant surprise.

Rating: 9

Women's hockey

HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $4.4 million

Medal count: 1 (bronze)

Summary: The second ranked team in what was expected to be a two-horse race finished third. They played well in pool play then bottled it against England in the semis. They should have won the game in regulation then bombed the shootout.

Rating: 5


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $7.24 million

Medal count: 1 (silver)

Summary: A disappointing campaign. Eased through pool play as expected, but were marginally the better of two struggling teams in the semi win against England then hammered by 18 goals by Australia in the final. Ultimate anti-climax after Delhi. Not helped by injuries.

Rating: 5.5


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $3.59 million

Medal count: 1 (silver)

Summary: A patchy campaign that fell at the final hurdle against a good South African team. Better now than in Rio, but the programme needs to lift to match the rate of improvement by other countries.

Rating: 6.5


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $8.65 million

Medal count: 4 (3 gold, 1 silver)

Summary: Medals from just two people, Lauren Boyle and para-swimmer Sophie Pascoe, brightly illuminated a real dearth of depth of top-drawer talent.  

Rating: 5


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $7.44 million

Medal count: 0

Summary: Were targeting two medals and came up two short. Andrea Hewitt and Nicky Samuels emerged with reputations intact but the men - particularly Ryan Sissons - and Kate McIlroy disappointed.

Rating: 3.5


Men's hockey

HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $3.55 million

Medal count: 0

Summary: Ranked third, had tickets on themselves as finalists with a puncher's chance at beating Australia yet return home empty-handed. Played well in pool play, but were limp against India in the semifinal loss, coughing up a 2-0 lead.

Rating: 4.5


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $1.23 million

Medal count: 3 (1 gold, 1 silver, 1 bronze)

Summary: The medal count didn't reflect how close to the top many of their teams were. Consistent displays in tough, unfamiliar conditions.   

Rating: 7


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $151,000

Medal count: 1 (gold)

Summary: Sally Johnston's gold in the women's 50m prone rifle saved what was otherwise a disappointing campaign with the shooters struggling to make finals. Still, a gold carries plenty of weight.

Rating: 6


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $1.22 million

Medal count: 1 (bronze)

Summary: The Kiwis fell short of the standards set by England and Australia and there are some depth concerns, too. King's singles bronze is another sign she will be the game's leader here for a while.

Rating: 5


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $111,500

Medal count: 3 (1 gold, 1 silver, 1 bronze)

Summary: Richie Patterson's gold highlighted a fine return for the tin-chuckers. They now need to bring their young lifters through that got a taste in Glasgow - an increased role as coach for Patterson may be a key.

Rating: 8


HPSNZ funding from 2011-2014: $409,250

Medal count: 2 (1 gold, 1 silver)

Summary: Even coach Phil Shatford admitted he didn't think his crew had a gold and a silver in them. David Nyika and David Light were the heroes and Bowyn Morgan was robbed against a bloke who went on to easily win gold. A couple were on the wrong side of the draw while a couple underperformed.

Rating: 8



Medal count: 2 (2 bronze)

Summary: After a 28-year wait for a wrestling Games medal, Sam Belkin and Tayla Ford won two in five minutes. A little like judo, most Kiwis don't appreciate there are a handful of world class wrestlers in New Zealand.

Rating: 7


Medal count: 5 (2 silver, 3 bronze)

Summary: A Judo New Zealand official told us pre-Games three medals would have been a brilliant return. Missing a gold was the only thing stopping them getting a 9.

Rating: 8.5


Medal count: 1 (bronze)

Summary: Dealt a massive blow when leading hope Courtney McGregor pulled out injured on Games eve, but David Bishop's surprise bronze in men's floor - NZ's first gymnastics medal since 1998 - more than made up for it. Definite pass mark.

Rating: 6.5

Table tennis

Medal count: 0

Summary: No expectations and they didn't do anything to raise eyebrows, with a couple of quarterfinal efforts and little more. No fairytale story for 52-year-old Li Chunli.

Rating: 5


Medal count: 0

Summary: They were always going to find it tough, given their world rankings, and so it proved as they didn't threaten the medals. Most players are still young though.    

Rating: 5


GOLD - 14

Sam Webster (individual sprint), men's team sprint - Sam Webster, Eddie Dawkins, Ethan Mitchell, Tom Scully (men's 40km points race), Shane Archbold (men's 20km scratch race), Jo Edwards (women's singles bowls), Sally Johnston (women's 50m prone rifle), Richie Patterson (men's 85kg weightlifting), Sophie Pascoe (women's para-swimming 100m breaststroke SB9), Anton Cooper (mountain biking), Lauren Boyle (women's 400m freestyle), Sophie Pascoe (women's para-swimming 200m medley S10), Val Adams (women's shot put), Linda Villumsen (women's road cycling time trial), David Nyika (81kg light heavyweight boxing)


Tom Walsh (shot put), Julia Ratcliffe (hammer throw), Sam Webster (Keirin, cycling), Simon van Velthooven (1km time trial), Adrian Leat (men's 73kg judo), Moira de Villiers (women's 70kg judo), men's rugby sevens team, Lauren Boyle (women's 800m freestyle), Sam Gaze (mountain biking), Stanislav Chalaev (men's 105kg weightlifting), para bowls open triples - Lynda Bennett, Barry Wynks and Mark Noble, David Light (91kg heavyweight boxing), Silver Ferns (netball), Jack Bauer (men's cycling road race)


Zane Robertson (5000m), Eddie Dawkins (individual sprint), Aaron Gate (men's 40km points race), men's team pursuit cycling - Marc Ryan, Pieter Bulling, Dylan Kennett, Shane Archbold, Marc Ryan (men's individual pursuit), Matthew Archibald (1km time trial), Jason Koster (men's 100kg judo), Tim Slyfield (men's 100kg judo), Darcina Manuel (women's 57kg judo), women's fours bowls - Selina Goddard, Amy McIlroy, Mandy Boyd, Val Smith, Joelle King (women's singles squash), Tayla Ford (women's 58kg wrestling), Sam Belkin (men's 97kg wrestling), Tracey Lambrechs (women's 75kg+ weightlifting), David Bishop (men's floor gymnastics), women's hockey team, Nick Willis (1500m)


CYCLING - 15 (11 track, 2 mountain bike, 2 road)

JUDO - 5
















TOTAL - 45


Auckland 1990 - 58 (17 gold, 14 silver, 27 bronze)

Auckland 1950* - 54 (10 gold, 22 silver, 22 bronze)

GLASGOW 2014 - 45 (14 GOLD, 14 SILVER, 17 BRONZE)

Manchester 2002 - 45 (11 gold, 13 silver, 21 bronze)

Victoria 1994 - 41 (5 gold, 16 silver, 20 bronze)

Edinburgh 1986 - 38 (8 gold, 16 silver, 14 bronze)

Delhi 2010 - 36 (6 gold, 22 silver, 8 bronze)

Christchurch 1974 - 35 (9 gold, 8 silver, 18 bronze)

*as the Empire Games