The Prime Minister John Howard announced on 31 December 1998 the creation of an Australian Sports Medal. The Medal is a commemorative medal awarded during the year 2000, as Sydney hosted the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The medal was not restricted to athletes and others connected with the games.
The medal recognised a cross-section of those whose efforts have made Australia a Nation of sporting excellence. These include former competitors and those who have provided the support base of sport, for example, coaches, sport scientists, office holders, and those who maintain sports facilities and provide transport. The Australian Sports Medal does not carry post-nominals.