January 14 - The shortlist for the Ultimate Sports City Awards has been increased to 30 for 2014 with five cities making the list for the first time.
Auckland, Baku, Calgary, Kazan, and Warsaw all make their debut on the shortlist as 29 cities look to replace London as the world's top sports host following its victory in 2012.
The awards, established in 2006, look to recognise the best sports host city in the world on a biennial basis using a variety of factors.
The top 15 ranking cities from the previous edition, 2012 in this case, are guaranteed a spot on the shortlist, alongside 10 top ranking cities based on events held between 2010 and 2018 and five wildcard entrants, voted by a panel of judges.
This year, London will have to fight off challenges from Melbourne, which won the coveted title in 2006, 2008 and 2010, as well as by Sydney, New York, Manchester, Singapore, Berlin, Copenhagen, Glasgow, Paris, Tokyo, Vancouver, Istanbul, Dubai, Madrid, Rio de Janeiro, Moscow, Sochi, Doha, Kuala Lumpur, Amsterdam and Beijing, which all made the last shortlist in 2012.
Cape Town, Delhi and Sao Paulo also return to the list having last appeared in 2010.
"Congratulations to the 30 cities that have made the cut to be considered the SportBusiness Ultimate Sports City of 2014, and in particular to our new entrants, which we expect to challenge the established order of successful major events hosts that have regularly done well in these awards," said head judge Rachael Church-Sanders.
The final results of the Awards, which are sponsored by SportBusiness, are to be announced at the SportAccord International Convention in Antalya, Turkey, in April with the overall winner being revealed by the panel, alongside winners of each scoring category.
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