A SURFING koala has been revealed as the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games mascot, exactly two years to the day from of the opening ceremony of the 2018 sporting event.
Borobi, the indigenous Yugambeh language word for koala, was inspired by a drawing by Brisbane school teacher Merrilyn Krohn, the winner of the GC2018 Mascot Design Competition.
The hand drawn design was later finessed by Brisbane designers SapientNitro and animation specialists Cutting Edge.
It is the first time a koala has been chosen as the mascot of a major Australian multisport event.
Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games Corporation (GOLDOC) chairman Nigel Chamier says Borobi will have an important role to play over the coming two years.
"Mascots have become iconic symbols of the Commonwealth Games, providing an emotional connection between athletes, spectators and the community," he says.
"When we challenged the Australian community to design the GC2018 mascot we were not only overwhelmed by the response and quality of the entries, but by the excitement that was generated by the very chance to create the personality of the Games.
"Borobi joins two very memorable mascots from previous Commonwealth Games hosted in Australia, Matilda at the Brisbane 1982 Commonwealth Games and Melbourne 2006's Karak, a south-eastern Red-tailed Black Cockatoo.
"As the Commonwealth gets to know Borobi and his life story over the coming two years, they will be carried along on his exciting journey."
Mayor Tom Tate predicts Borobi will be as memorable to children as Matilda was to those who enjoyed Brisbane in 1982.
"When residents, visitors, officials, athletes and sponsors reflect on the success of an event such as the Commonwealth Games, their memories of the Games' official mascot is vital," says Tate.
"This mascot will bring just the right enthusiasm, fun and energy our city is renowned for and will be part of the lasting legacy of what is shaping to be a great Games."
Commonwealth Games Minister Stirling Hinchliffe says Borobi has enormous appeal and is proving an instant hit.
"Borobi is a very special and unique koala whose personality embodies all the values of the Gold Coast and the Australian way of life," Hinchliffe says. "He is fun, approachable, determined, passionate and active."
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