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IOC session approves cricket and four more sports for the Los Angeles 2028 Olympics

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Since its exclusion from the mega sports event in 1990, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has approved the addition of cricket in the 2028 Los Angeles games during its session in Mumbai.

The inclusion of baseball/softball, flag football, lacrosse (sixes), squash, and cricket (T20) as new sports in the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics received formal IOC approval during a press conference on October 16. IOC President Thomas Bach stated that two IOC members voted against it and one abstained.

“The IOC Session has approved the proposal from the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games Organising Committee (@LA28) to add five new sports to the schedule.

IOC session approves cricket and four more sports for the Los Angeles 2028 Olympics
IOC President Thomas Bach

The LA28 schedule will include baseball/softball, cricket (T20), flag football, lacrosse (sixes), and squash, according to a tweet from the IOC. Bach had previously stated that applications had been made to host these events as part of the Olympics in 2028.

Nita Ambani, an IOC member and head of the Reliance Foundation, stated regarding cricket’s inclusion in the 2028 Los Angeles Summer Olympic Games, “For 1.4 billion Indians, cricket is not just a sport, it’s a religion! I’m therefore thrilled that this landmark resolution was approved during the 141st IOC Session, which takes place here in Mumbai. Cricket’s inclusion in the Olympics will increase interest in the Olympic Movement in newer geographical areas. Additionally, it helps to increase cricket’s expanding global popularity.

A diverse roster of new sports

IOC session approves cricket and four more sports for the Los Angeles 2028 Olympics
Olympics Logo

At the Olympic Games in Los Angeles, baseball/softball, cricket, and lacrosse are expected to return, whereas flag football and squash will be making their Olympic debuts. Baseball, a former Olympic sport, will be back in Tokyo in 2020 but not in the Games in Paris. The most recent Summer Games to feature softball, the female version of baseball, were in Tokyo 2020.

Cricket, which will be played in the Twenty20 format, makes a second appearance at the Olympics after making its debut at the 1900 Games in Paris. A six-team Twenty20 competition is planned for both men and women in LA 2028. 

The LA28 incorporates lacrosse, a sport invented by the Indigenous Peoples of North America, in its quick and condensed sixes format. After competing in the Olympic Games in St. Louis in 1904 and London in 1908, this would be its third appearance.

Flag football is a non-contact variation of American football played by five-person teams and is rapidly gaining popularity in the US and abroad. Additionally, Flag football and indoor racket sport squash, both of which are debuting, are already part of eight other multi-sport competitions. The IOC stated in its earlier statement that the selection of sports was the result of a careful process and analysis based on evaluation criteria established before the process began, including gender equality.

Thomas Bach praises the five new sports that the LA28 Olympics will introduce

The LA28 Organising Committee’s request to include these five new sports in the 2028 sports programme was approved by the committee’s Executive Board on October 13 before the IOC Session gave its final approval. The selection of these five new sports is consistent with American sports culture and will highlight well-known American sports to the world and bringing international sports to the United States, according to IOC President Thomas Bach, who presided over the EB meeting. The Olympic Games LA28 will be distinctive because of these sports, according to IOC President Thomas Bach. “The Olympic Movement will be able to interact with new athlete and fan bases in the US and around the world thanks to their inclusion.” Nita Ambani, a member of the IOC and the chairperson of the Reliance Foundation, was also praised by Bach for her contributions to developing the sports scene in India. He stated that Mrs. Ambani had explained to IOC members the idea of such as cricket in the Olympic Games.

LA28 is a 33-sport extravaganza that will feature 5 new sports

The IOC announced in February 2022 that the 28 Olympic sports that were initially planned for LA28’s sport programme would be joined by the five new sports. Aquatics, Archery, Athletics, Badminton, Basketball, Canoe, Cycling, Equestrian, Fencing, Football (Soccer), Golf, Gymnastics, Handball, Judo, Rowing, Rugby, Sailing, Shooting, Sport Climbing, Surfing, Table Tennis, Taekwondo, Tennis, Triathlon, Volleyball, and Wrestling are among the 28 sports that were initially included.

New sports for a new generation of participants and spectators

When presenting their proposals to the EB on October 9, the LA28 organising committee stated that the new sports “is going to provide new levels of joy for current Olympic supporters and welcome a new generation of athletes and fans to take part in co-creating what’s next.” They are played in backyards, schoolyards, community centres, stadiums, and parks all over the United States and the world; they are current, innovative, and community-based, according to LA28 Chairperson Casey Wasserman. They “will attract new athletes to the Games, engage a variety of fan bases, and increase the Games’ presence in digital spaces, further enhancing LA28’s mission to deliver an unmatched experience.”

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