John Coates, left, with International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach ©Getty Images

The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) has hailed a donation of AUD$600,000 (€369,379/£324,066) by the Queensland Government to the Australian Olympic team ahead of Tokyo 2020.

Today’s announcement from Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Sports Minister Mick de Brenni is a significant boost to the fundraising target of $1.1 million in Queensland.

AOC President John Coates revealed every dollar of the Queensland Government contribution would go towards supporting athletes in Tokyo.

He said: “We are very grateful to the Premier and Minister de Brenni for their support. 

"This generous donation will be used to provide our athletes with the best possible environment to achievement their Olympic goals.

“Team Appeal Funding goes directly to ensuring our athletes have the highest quality medical support, physiotherapy, recovery, welfare support, logistical support and more. 

"It is not used in any other way."

In welcoming the donation, Queensland Olympic Council President and five-time Olympian Natalie Cook said Queenslanders had a proud record at the Olympic Games.

“Queenslanders are overachievers at the Olympics so the Queensland Government can rest safe in the knowledge that it is helping our athletes realise their Olympic dreams," she said.

Natalie Cook says Queenslanders can contribute significantly to any medal haul for Australia at Tokyo 2020 ©Getty Images
Natalie Cook says Queenslanders can contribute significantly to any medal haul for Australia at Tokyo 2020 ©Getty Images

“Since the Sydney Olympics in 2000, our state has contributed 22 per cent of the teams at Summer Games and even more impressively, Queenslanders have taken home 39 per cent of the medals won by Australian Olympic teams.

“We are also demonstrating that Queenslanders are generous in getting behind their athletes, whether that’s Government, business or members of the public who want the team to do well."

Coates admitted the AOC would, potentially, be sending the biggest Olympic team to leave Australian shores, depending on qualification.

“Every athlete selected will go to Tokyo determined to do their best for themselves, their friends and families, their sports and their country," he said.

"Our job is to support them in every possible way.

“Queenslanders have such a special bond with our Olympic endeavour. 

"We have witnessed the amazing growth of the education initiative “Olympic Unleashed” in Queensland primary schools. This programme has become a model for the rest of the country.

“In recent weeks, we have seen the growing enthusiasm for Queensland’s potential to mount a bid to host the Summer Olympic Games in 2032. 

"Importantly, the IOC President Thomas Bach has witnessed first-hand what Queensland has to offer."