There was some disappointment to be dealt with for the Indian compound archers at the end of the International Olympic Council’s (IOC) Executive Board meeting here on Friday, as it was confirmed that the event would find no place in the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics.
In June last year, World Archery had proposed to the IOC for the inclusion of compound archery, which was not in the programme, for the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games.
Among the new sports proposed for the LA 2028 Games, T20 cricket is certainly the biggest attraction for the Indians but there would potentially be some loss in terms of medals, given how well the compound archery did in the recently held Asian Games in China.
The Indian compound archers claimed all five gold medals in their category as Jyothi Surekha Vennam and Ojas Pravin Deotale won the women’s and men’s individual competitions.
Abhishek Verma won the silver medal in men’s individual archery whereas the 17-year-old Aditi Swami Gopichand bagged the bronze medal in women’s event.
India won the gold medal in both men’s and women’s compound archery, with Jyothi and Ojas winning individual gold medals.
On the other hand, the recurve archers also were among the medal winners.
The Indian men’s recurve team of Dhiraj Bommadevara, Atanu Das and Tushar Shelke claimed the silver medal while the women’s team of Bhajan Kaur, Ankita Bhakat and Simranjeet Kaur clinched the bronze medal.
IOC sports director Kit McConnell, however, without naming compound archery said that given the addition of new sports in the LA 2028 games, combined with the number of participating athletes expected to rise from the desired number of 10,500, adjustments could be made.
“The increase would obviously, equally, be looking to limit the impact on the existing sports — that is the balance we will have to find,” McConnell said.
“Moving forward also, respecting the universality within those existing sports and any changes that we make,” he added.
“Regarding the disciplines, the programme commission set that very framework. The president outlined no new venues, no additional quota, and new disciplines only where they were a replacement or swap for existing events or disciplines.
“That is why coastal rowing is the only additional new discipline because of the replacement of the lightweight rowing,” he added.
“In saying that, it is also really important that we highlight the strength of the number of proposals that were put forward by the international federations.
“You mentioned some, but some of those proposals that came from international federations, we have so say no because of that framework, controlling the cost and complexity but not a judgement of the quality of many of those,” he added.
McConnell acknowledged that international federations made some really compelling proposals but their non-inclusion in Games is no judgement on the popularity or the form.
“There is a lot of quality, a lot of proposals there that are really well-established, highly popular and highly developed forms of the sport — very popular outside the Games. Any of those omissions or non-inclusion is not a criticism of the sport.
“There are some very compelling cases that the federations have made, but it is really about the cost and complexity,” he said.
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