International Cricket Council (ICC) has said it will push to include cricket in the Olympic Games and that it is beginning preparations for a bid with the primary aim being its addition to the Los Angeles 2028 itinerary. The international cricketing body has assembled a working group to lead this bid already.
The ICC Olympic Working Group will be chaired by England and Wales Cricket Board Ian Watmore and will comprise ICC Independent Director Indira Nooyi, Chair of Zimbabwe Cricket Tavengwa Mukuhlani, ICC Associate Member Director and Vice President of the Asian Cricket Council Mahinda Vallipuram and USA Cricket Chair Parag Marathe.
Around 33 million cricket fans living in the US make the LA Olympics 2028 just the perfect occasion for the comeback of cricket in the event after a long gap of 128 years. Before this, cricket was part of Olympics and made an appearance at the international sporting event way back in 1900 when only two teams competed- Great Britain and France.
Adding cricket to the Olympic Games will prove beneficial both for the sport and the games themselves, according to ICC chair Greg Barclay. “Firstly on behalf of everyone at the ICC, I would like to congratulate the IOC, Tokyo 2020, and the people of Japan for staging such an incredible Games in such difficult circumstances. It truly was fantastic to watch and captured the imagination of the world and we would love for cricket to be a part of future Games,” Barclays was quoted by news agency ANI as saying.
“Clearly cricket has a strong and passionate fanbase, particularly in South Asia where 92 per cent of our fans come from whilst there are also 30 million cricket fans in the US. The opportunity for those fans to see their heroes competing for an Olympic medal is tantalising,” he added. Barclays further added inclusion of cricket in the Olympic Games will not be easy since “there are so many other great sports out there wanting to do the same”.
Edited by Mehak Agarwal; with agency inputs
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