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Sydney Olympic legacy boss warns London over 'cash-cow venues'

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The man responsible for Sydney 2000 Olympic Park's legacy has issued a warning to London's 2012 organisers over throwing cash at its main venues.

Brian Newman, chief executive of Sydney Olympic Park, said the recipe for a successful Olympic games lies not in 'expensive venues, but the personal experience'.

He said: 'The best Games are not necessarily the Games which have the most dramatic venues, but the ones where everyone gets into the spirit of the Games.'

Sydney has been widely recognised as one of the most successful Games in modern times, but Newman is certain it was not just due to looks alone.

'The Sydney Olympics was rated so highly because it was seen as the friendly Games,' he said. 'Beijing has wonderful designs, and it will, no doubt, stage the grandest Games of all, but these venues will not be viable after the event.'

Although Sydney enjoyed great success when staging the Games, it suffered a serious hangover, and has only just begun to turn itself around, seven years after the tournament.

Newman added: 'We have created a new masterplan since 2002, which is three times larger and although we are still running at a net loss, it is turning around.'

by Richard Vaughan

Photograph Dominik Gigler

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