Commonwealth Games facts: which 6 countries have been at every Games, why is it known as the ‘Friendly Games’?

There are plenty of interesting facts about the Commonwealth Games - here are just a few...

The Commonwealth Games is an event which sees athletes from all corners of the globe for almost two weeks of competitions.

Many of the most famous cities in the world have played host, and Birmingham will soon join the illustrious list.

With the countdown to the 2022 games well and truly on, here are some of the most interesting facts about the Commonwealth Games from across its 90 year history.

Have any nations competed at every Commonwealth Games?

The Queen's Baton Relay is touring England for 25 days in a celebration of sport, culture and communities during the final countdown to the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games

The Commonwealth, and subsequently the Commonwealth Games, have grown on an almost regular basis throughout the 20th and into the 21 centuries.

Throughout this time, only six nations have sent a team to each and every Commonwealth Games, which have taken place every four years since 1930 (and a period where they were suspended during the Second World War).

There are now over 70 nations and territories eligible to compete at the Commonwealth Games, but only Australia, Canada, England, New Zealand, Scotland and Wales have competed at every Games since their inception.

What is the highest number of nations to ever compete at a Commonwealth Games?

The highest number of nations to compete at a Games was 72 at the 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games.

However, this wasn’t reflected in the number of athletes, as the largest number of athletes (4,929) were present at the 2014 Glasgow Games.

How new are single competition sports to the Commonwealth Games?

The playing of sports such as netball and hockey at the Commonwealth Games is far more recent than you may think.

In fact, up until the 1998 games in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia only single competition events took place at the Commonwealth Games.

At the 1998 games, many single competition sports were played at the Commonwealth Games.

Nations have competed in cricket, hockey, netball and rugby 7s, with cricket making its Commonwealth Games debut this year in Birmingham.

Why are they known as ‘The Friendly Games’?

The Commonwealth Games are commonly referred to as The Friendly Games. This is for several reasons, with the main one being they have the aim of bringing people together through sport rather than dividing them through competitiveness.

One of the main aims of the Games is to promote the competition of sport, and that it’s not always about winning.

The games certainly play up to the old saying of ‘it’s the taking part that counts’.

How many sports are at Commonwealth Games 2022?

Following the opening ceremony, 26 different sports will be played across 11 action packed days.

This breaks down as more than 280 sessions of sport, tickets for many remain on sale.

A full, comprehensive guide to which sport is happening when and where has been released for the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

The first event of the games is due to be Lawn Bowls and Para Lawn Bowls which will get underway at Victoria Park in Leamington Spa at 8.30am on 29 July.

The opening ceremony of the games is due to begin at 7pm on Thursday, 28 July at the Alexander Stadium.

The closing ceremony will begin at 8pm on Monday, 8 August and finish at approximately 10pm.

To view the full events schedule for the games, visit the official Commonwealth Games website