Third-largest Australian overseas Olympic team named

Roger Vaughan and Steve Larkin |

Tokyo canoeing gold medallist Jessica Fox will be a big Australian story at the Paris Olympics.
Tokyo canoeing gold medallist Jessica Fox will be a big Australian story at the Paris Olympics.

Australia’s third-largest overseas Olympic team is confirmed, boasting an unprecedented range of medal-potential talent.

Monday’s final 55 athletics selections completed the Paris team, bringing its size to 460.

Only the Sydney home Olympics, London and Tokyo have featured bigger Australian teams.

Australians will compete at the July 26-August 11 Olympics in every sport except handball.

A feature of this Olympic team is the broad range of sports where Australia has medal-winning potential.

In terms of medal spread, the record is 20 at the 2000 home Games – but this time there are genuine podium chances in at least 22 sports.

“One of the things that is quite pertinent … is that we are having quite a bit of success and great performances across the board, in a breadth of sports,” team chef de mission Anna Meares has said.

“The potential for that to translate into Olympic medals is very exciting.”

Australia traditionally sources most medals from swimming, athletics, cycling, rowing and sailing – the top five sports in the nation’s proud Olympic history.

But the biggest Australian story at the Paris Olympics shapes as French-born Jessica Fox, who will defend her canoeing gold medal from Tokyo.

The sailing and rowing teams have several strong medal contenders, while weightlifting, boxing, equestrian, tennis, golf, basketball, hockey, rugby sevens, soccer and water polo all feature prominently in Olympic predictions.

Australia won 17 gold medals in Tokyo, equalling Athens in 2004 for the most at an Olympics. The most medals was 58 at Sydney.

Meares, a two-time Olympic track cycling gold medallist, is making her debut as team chef de mission and will hold her departure media conference on Wednesday in Sydney.


* 460 competitors across 33 sports

* 255 men, 205 women, 231 debutants

* Features 19 gold medallists from the Tokyo Olympics and five from Rio