Cricket is set to be included in the Olympics in Los Angeles 2028, according to reports from the United Kingdom. According to the report by The Guardian on Monday, cricket will be one of the five newly-included sports, alongside flag football, baseball and softball, lacrosse and squash.
The Los Angeles Organising Committee has reportedly confirmed the list of disciplines to be added in the Olympic Games and, after discussions with the Olympic programme commission, will official announce the additions after the International Olympic Committee’s session in Mumbai, the report said.
Cricket has been played only once in the Olympics before, in 1900, between Great Britain, represented by Devon and Somerset Wanderers, and France, with the former registering a 185-run victory in a 12-a-side match.
The International Cricket Council (ICC), the governing body of the sport, expressed its happiness on the recommendation.
“We are delighted that LA28 have recommended cricket for inclusion in the Olympics Whilst this is not the final decision, it is a very significant landmark towards seeing cricket at the Olympics for the first time in more than a century,” ICC Chairman Greg Barclay said.
“I’d like to thank LA28 for their support during the new sport evaluation process over last two years and we look forward to the final decision being taken at the IOC Session, in India, during the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup next week.”
Out from the 2028 Olympics programme is breakdancing, which will be a one-and-done after its debut in Paris next year. Others not making the cut: motorsports, kickboxing and karate.
Unclear is whether other sports will have to trim the number of disciplines to help the IOC adhere to the limit it set of 10,500 athletes at a Summer Olympics. The addition of five team sports will inflate the number of participants.
Flag football is a less-violent cousin of America’s most popular sport, one the NFL has been selling in Europe, Mexico and Japan for decades. This year, the NFL placed three games in London and two games in Germany on its schedule.
Flag football, in which “tackles” are made by pulling a flag off a belt worn by each player, would be a 5-on-5 affair played on a 50-yard field. There aren’t offensive and defensive linemen. At the World Games last year, the U.S. men won the gold medal but the women fell to Mexico in the final.
(with inputs from AP)
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