England strike gold in Commonwealth Games finale

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Local media slammed organisers for taking the spotlight away from the athletes, and Australia's para-athlete flagbearer Kurt Fearnley said it was "pretty strange".

"I want to play my part to keep promoting inclusion after all the wonderful messages I've received because I definitely don't think of myself as disabled but as uniquely able".

Beattie said organisers had meant to spare athletes a long wait before entering the venue but had got the broadcasting decision wrong.

Images of joyous athletes filing in behind their nations' flags have been a feature of closing ceremony broadcasts at Commonwealth and Olympic Games for decades. "While Team England have apologised, I'm still gutted not to have the opportunity to represent my country after all the hard miles I've put in". We were driven by the welfare of athletes.

"They have competed, they are exhausted, and the last thing they want is to stand in a field for one hour to get into a closing ceremony".

"This resulted in the athletes entering the stadium during the pre-show, rather than during the live broadcast".

Seven presenter Johanna Griggs, a 1990 Commonwealth Games swimming bronze medallist, teed off at organisers, after viewers initially expressed frustration with the broadcaster when athletes were left out. I did just that, the guys did what they needed to do. There's no athletes in here.

As the event rolled on, spectators began streaming out of the Carrara Stadium before the ceremony finished, leaving the venue seemingly half-empty when the lights were turned back on.

Fans who tuned into the closing ceremony hoping to see Aussie flag-bearer Kurt Fearnley did not mask their disappointment either.