The International Olympic Committee (IOC), on Monday, October 16, 2023, voted to include Cricket along with four other sports in the Los Angeles Olympics 2028. Both men’s and women’s T20 format games will be played during the LA Olympics.
The announcement is special for several reasons. It comes during the ongoing ICC World Cup 2023 being hosted by India and has been made at the 141st IOC Session in Mumbai which marks the return of the prestigious gathering to India after a gap of 40 years.
The IOC executive board, last week, had approved the proposal of the Los Angeles Games organizers to include the sport in the program. Along with cricket, baseball-softball, flag football, lacrosse (sixes) and squash also got the nod.
“The proposal from the Organising Committee of the Olympic Games Los Angeles 2028 (@LA28) to include five new sports in the program has been accepted by the IOC Session. Baseball/softball, cricket (T20), flag football, lacrosse (sixes), and squash will be in the program at LA28,” IOC said on X.
“We see the growing popularity of cricket, particularly the T20 format. The World Cup (50 overs) is a huge success already,” IOC President Thomas Bach said last week.
The Los Angeles Games organizing committee had proposed a six-team event, in both men’s and women’s T20 cricket, with the United States set to field sides as the host nation. A final decision on the final number of teams and qualification system will be made later.
"We are thrilled that cricket’s inclusion in the LA28 Olympic Games has been confirmed by the IOC Session today. To have the opportunity to showcase our great sport at the LA28 Games and hopefully, many Olympic Games to come will be great for players and fans alike.
I’d like to thank the International Olympic Committee and LA28 for their support and for their trust in our organization’s ability to deliver a world-class event and countless new Olympic fans from all over the world. The fact that the IOC confirmation of our selection occurred here in Mumbai, during the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, is truly icing on the cake. The innings have just begun, and we can't wait to see where this incredible journey leads,” ICC Chairman Greg Barclay said.
Cricket has only been part of the Olympic Games once previously, back in 1900, but the stars of the game will now be able to dream of winning a gold medal at the XXXIV Olympiad.