RIO DE JANEIRO (Rio 2016 Olympic Games) - The President of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach, was in attendance to watch Australia beat Lithuania in Wednesday's Quarter-Final at Carioca Arena 1 on Wednesday.
He took time to talk to FIBA.com.
FIBA.com: How are the Rio 2016 Olympic Games going?
Bach: I think they are going very well. We see great facilities and exciting performances by the athletes. The competition really has been at a very high level across all of the sports and of course in basketball.
Bach: I think it's a great tournament and you see new teams coming up right now with Australia where usually the women were the ones representing the country and now they have a very strong men's team. We've seen extremely close games which is very exciting. Having games decided in the last seconds is fantastic for the sport.
FIBA.com: These are your first Summer Games as the President of the IOC. What is that experience like?
Bach: First of all it means being happy for the athletes that they have such excellent conditions in the facilities and that they can give their best. This is the most important. Then of course as President I enjoy some logistical advantages which enable me for the first time now to win a bet against another IOC colleague which I made in 1992 in Barcelona. The bet is who will make it first to see all 28 sports in one Olympic Games. Both of us are huge sports fans but we never managed it in any Games. But in these Games I will manage so I will win my bet.
FIBA.com: How far along are you right now in terms of seeing all 28 sports?
Bach: I think it's still 4 or 5 sports to go but if nothing surprising happens then I will make it and win a good bottle of red wine on Sunday evening.
Bach: Yes I hope I can make it for the women's Final.
Bach: There will be a great legacy of these Games in many respects. You will have the legacy in the infrastructure where you will see Rio de Janeiro before the Olympic Games and a much better one after the Olympic Games with all the improvements in public transportation, the tourism industry and the communication systems. The transformation of Rio can maybe only be compared to that of Barcelona in 1992 and Barcelona is a much smaller city than the metropolis that is Rio de Janeiro. There will also be a great social legacy. You see already now that in a country that is divided by many crises that the Olympic Games are uniting the people and this is maybe the only project, the only matter behind which the Brazilians across all their different cultures and in all their diversity can come together. So this legacy will continue because this will be in the public memory as there are so many people affected.