ICC pushing for cricket's inclusion in Olympics
It has been a long time that we have seen cricket in the Olympics. However, it could all change as early as 2028, as the International Cricket Council is pushing for its inclusion in Los Angeles Olympics 2028.
Although cricket might be played by a limited number of nations today, it is still one of the most popular global sports today. However, owing to its lack of adaptability by all the nations, it hasn’t really been an Olympic sport.
The last time cricket featured in the Games was back in 1900. However, after missing out for over a century, it could be back in the Olympic fray as early as 2028 at the Los Angeles Olympics.
In a release by the International Cricket Council on Tuesday, it was confirmed that it would be pushing for the sport’s inclusion for LA 2028, Brisbane 2032 and beyond.
“We would love for cricket to be a part of future Games. Our sport is united behind this bid, and we see the Olympics as a part of cricket’s long-term future. We have more than a billion fans globally, and almost 90 per cent of them want to see cricket at the Olympics,” said ICC chairperson Greg Barclay in a release.
“Clearly, cricket has a strong and passionate fanbase, particularly in South Asia where 92% of our fans come from, whilst there are also 30 million cricket fans in the USA. The opportunity for those fans to see their heroes competing for an Olympic medal is tantalising,” he added.
Meanwhile, Ian Watmore (Chairperson of the England and Wales Cricket Board) has also been roped in as the ICC Olympic Working Group chairperson. Four more members would be joining him, as he believes that it’s the appropriate time that the sport gets its rightful place in the Games.
“USA Cricket is thrilled to be able to support cricket’s bid for inclusion in the Olympics, the timing of which aligns perfectly with our continuing plans to develop the sport in the USA. With so many passionate cricket fans and players already in the USA and a huge global audience and following for the sport around the world, we believe that cricket’s inclusion will add great value to the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games and help us to achieve our own vision for establishing cricket as a mainstream sport in this country,” the statement added.
ICC’s push for the same comes following women’s cricket’s inclusion in the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games. While the ECB and the Board of Control for Cricket in India had reservations regarding the sport’s inclusion in the Olympics, they are now working on building the 2023-31 Future Tour Program keeping in mind the Olympics. Although the format for the same is yet to be decided, the T10 format is being pondered upon.
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