(ATR) Efforts to get cricket back into the Olympic Games are ramping up.
Cricket wants to be part of 2028 Olympics (Getty Images)
The subject was discussed during the MCC World Cricket Committee meeting at Lord’s Cricket Ground in London this week. Cricket made its only appearance in the Olympics in Paris in 1900.
“There is still much to be done if cricket is to be included in the Olympics, with Los Angeles 2028 the earliest likely opportunity and the ICC [International Cricket Council] continuing to work internally to align cricket to pursue the sport's Olympic ambitions,” the committee said in a statement.
The cause for the renewed optimism is due in part to the BCCI, the governing body of cricket in India, agreeing last week to come under the scope of the country’s National Anti-Doping Agency after years of refusing to do so.
For cricket to have any chance of Olympic inclusion, all of its member countries need to be under the umbrella of the IOC’s anti-doping efforts.
India has also previously balked at an Olympic tournament for fear it would adversely affect its lucrative Indian Premier League, the most popular and richest domestic league featuring Twenty20, the shortest form of cricket that would be the logical choice to be used in the Olympics. There is hope that this issue can also be solved.
Women's cricket is in Birmingham 2022 program (ICC)
Women’s cricket, meanwhile, was confirmed for inclusion at the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games on Tuesday.
“Fast and exciting, the T20 format is the perfect fit for the Commonwealth Games and offers another chance to showcase women’s cricket on the global stage as part of our ambitious plans to accelerate the growth of the game, whilst inspiring the next generation of cricketers," ICC chief executive Manu Sawhney said in a statement.
The ICC and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) launched the joint bid.
Eight teams will compete across eight match days, as cricket returns to the Commonwealth Games for the first time since 1998, when South Africa won gold in a men's 50-over (one-day) format competition in Kuala Lumpur. It is the only time the sport has been included in the Games, despite its popularity within the British Commonwealth.
Men’s and women’s cricket is also due to return to the Asian Games at Hangzhou 2022, likely again to be in T20 format. The sport was left out of the 2018 edition in Indonesia after featuring in Guangzhou in 2010 and Incheon in 2014.
Written by Gerard Farek
For general comments or questions, click here.
25 Years at #1: Your best source of news about the Olympics is AroundTheRings.com, for subscribers only.