The IOC plans to include cricket in the Los Angeles Olympics in 2028

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Lausanne: Cricket’s highly anticipated inclusion in the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics received a boost when the International Olympic Committee (IOC) shortlisted it for consideration along with eight other sporting disciplines. Cricket featured only once in the 1900 Paris Olympics, with Britain and host France as the only entrants.

According to ESPN Cricinfo, the development comes a day after the International Cricket Committee (ICC) was formally invited by LA28 and the IOC to submit a presentation for their case to be considered.

However, a final decision is expected to be announced ahead of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) session in Mumbai around mid-2023.

The other eight sports considered for the showpiece event are baseball/softball, flag football, lacrosse, break dancing, karate, kickboxing, squash and motorsport.

In February this year, the IOC said a total of 28 sporting events will be part of the Los Angeles Games and also added that “potential new sports” will be considered with a focus on young people.

According to the IOC’s dictate, a sport must clarify a set of criteria in order to be considered for inclusion.

This includes priorities of cost and complexity reduction, engagement of top athletes and sports with safety and health first, global appeal, host country interest, gender equality, relevance youth, maintaining integrity and fairness to support clean sport and long-term sustainability.

Cricket is currently featured in the ongoing Commonwealth Games with the women’s T20 format played between eight nations, although only women’s teams take part.

However, for a sporting event to be featured in the Olympics, it must be both male and female.

ICC CEO Geoff Allardice said he was pleased with the way cricket was perceived during the Birmingham Games and the sport was a ‘star attraction’ at the showpiece event.

“We saw at the Commonwealth Games how much the best players in the world enjoyed playing in front of large crowds and what I’m sure will be large television audiences,” Allardice told the website.

Naomi C. Amerson