The International Cricket Council (ICC) is planning to submit a bid to include cricket at the 2028 Olympics slated to be held in Los Angeles. The organization will present its case to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) for the sport to be part of the Olympics.
The ICC has reportedly already forged a working group to lead the bid. The ICC Olympic Working Group will be led by England and Wales Cricket Board Chair Ian Watmore. He will be joined by ICC Independent Director Indra Nooyi, Chair of Zimbabwe Cricket Tavengwa Mukuhlani, ICC Associate Member Director and Vice President of the Asian Cricket Council Mahinda Vallipuram, and Chair of USA Cricket Parag Marathe.
With cricket set to be a part of the 2022 Commonwealth Games, it serves as a stepping stone to what the sport could possibly bring into the largest sporting event in the world. Cricket has only been part of the Olympics once, back in 1900. Host nation France and Great Britain served as the only two participating nations back then.
ICC Chairman Greg Barclay claimed that the inclusion of the sport in the Olympics would be a win-win situation for both cricket as well as the multi-nation event. He said:
“We believe cricket would be a great addition to the Olympic Games, but we know it won’t be easy to secure our inclusion as there are so many other great sports out there wanting to do the same. But we feel now is the time to put our best foot forward and show what a great partnership cricket and the Olympics are.”
With Los Angeles playing host to the Olympics in 2028, the ICC views this as the perfect window to integrate and introduce the sport back into the games. The USA boasts about 30 million cricket fans, and the sport’s inclusion will definitely hone a positive response from the host nation.
ICC has BCCI’s full backing to move forward with the proposal
Earlier, BCCI secretary Jay Shah had revealed that India will be participating in the Olympic Games if the sport is added to the Games.
He has also claimed that the BCCI and ICC are on the same page with their vision to bring the sport back to the Olympics. He said:
“Once cricket is added in the Olympics, India will be participating. The BCCI and the ICC are on the same page as far as participation in the Olympics is concerned,”
If the sport is brought back into the Olympics, it is being reported that the event will comprise of eight teams for both men and women.