(L-R) David Wright, Eric Hosmer and Ryan Braun celebrate after defeating Italy at the World Baseball Classic at Chase Field on March 9, 2013 in Phoenix.
The executive board (EB) of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) today supported the proposal to add the package of five new sports to the programme of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. If approved at the 129th IOC Session in Rio De Janeiro in August, the change would be the most comprehensive evolution of the Olympic programme in modern history.
The five sports — karate, skateboarding, sports climbing, surfing and baseball/softball — offer a key focus on youth, which is at the heart of the Games vision for Tokyo 2020. They represent a combination of well-established and emerging sports with significant popularity in Japan and beyond. They include team sports and individual sports; indoor sports and outdoor sports; and ‘urban’ sports with a strong appeal to youth.
The package of five sports will now be submitted to the IOC Session. These sports are considered on top of the athlete and event quota recommendations for Olympic sports outlined in Olympic Agenda 2020, and will not take places away from athletes in existing Olympic sports. Discussions on the event programme in the existing 28 Olympic sports for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 are ongoing, and will be finalised by the IOC Executive Board in mid-2017.
The Organising Committee for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 proposed the new sports in response to the new flexibility provided by Olympic Agenda 2020, the IOC’s strategic roadmap for the future of the Olympic Movement, to encourage innovation in the Olympic programme. Olympic Agenda 2020 gives host cities the option of suggesting new sports and events for inclusion in their edition of the Games.
The host city selections are not binding on future Games hosts. The inclusion of the new sports would add 18 events and 474 athletes to the Olympic programme in Tokyo, without impacting existing sports. The package promotes gender equality, with each of the five sports having equal numbers of teams for men and women, while also focusing on innovative and exciting sports for Japan and the wider international community.