August 29, 2016 / 7:42 AM / 3 years ago

Meares lauds Australian Olympians at home-coming event

Sydney's Lord Mayor Clover Moore (C) poses for a picture with Australia's Olympic athletes returning from Rio during an official welcome ceremony at the Sydney Opera House in Australia, August 29, 2016. REUTERS/Jason Reed

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Track cyclist Anna Meares praised the efforts of the Australian Olympic team during a welcome home ceremony at the Sydney Opera House on Monday, despite a disappointing overall showing in Brazil.

Australia’s 422 athletes amassed 29 medals in Rio, their lowest total since the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, with Meares claiming bronze in the keirin after failing to add a third gold to those she won in Athens in 2004 and London four years ago.

“For some, we came home with personal bests and for some, we fell agonizingly short. But for all who arrived in Rio, we reached to achieve something great,” said Meares, Australian team captain and flag-bearer in Rio.

The ceremony ended with a performance by a Japanese drumming group to set the tone for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Reporting by Jill Gralow; Editing by Patrick Johnston/John O'Brien

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