The Barcelona Olympics took place during 1992 and is often referred to as the XXV Olympiad. Spain was proud to host these
Olympics and fought hard against bids from France, Australia, Yugoslavia, Great Britain and the Netherlands. In celebration
of this worldwide event, the Royal Australian Mint struck this one dollar
The Games of the XXV Olympiad were opened on the 25th July 1992 by King Juan Carlos I of Spain. The event was special for so many reasons. It had been a long absence for South Africa due to its apartheid but they were allowed to compete in Barcelona. It was the last time the the USSR competed as one nation albeit as the Unified Team without the likes of breakaway countries Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. It was also a first for a combined German team having gone through the re-unification process. The games also gave an opportunity for new disciplines to be demonstrated. The Olympic committee always attempt to keep abreast of new sports from around the globe. There were three demonstrations from Tae-Kwondo, Roller Hockey and Basque Pelota. Of these submissions, only Tae-Kwondo is now a recognised Olympic sport. There were some new additions to the event list as the canoe slalom returns whilst it welcomed newcomers Baseball and Badminton. The Games themselves were keenly contested with so many heroic achievements throughout their duration.The medal table gave some great reading but it was the newly formed Unified Team that topped the list. They won 112 medals compared to second placed USA who took 108 (Database Olympics, 2014) . This gives you some idea of the atmosphere and the competitiveness of all the athletes that gave everything and a little more.
The Australian Olympic Team eventually finished just inside the top 10 on the medal table with a total of 27 medals, seven of which were gold. Suffice to say that these games were a considerable success and it is tremendous to see the worlds best athletes come together. One resounding moment from the tournament was when the South African athlete Elana Meyer came in second to Ethiopian Derartu Tulu in a tightly contested battle in the women's10,000 metre run. Such was their feeling that they did a victory lap holding hands around the stadium.
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