Tokyo 2020 Olympic organizers will announce their proposed sporting additions to the International Olympic Committee for the 2020 Summer Games on Sept. 28.
A final decision on the sport additions will be made next August at the IOC's session.
Baseball, softball, bowling, karate, roller sports, sport climbing, squash, surfing and wushu, a Chinese martial art, are on Tokyo 2020's short list.
Tokyo organizers can propose the addition of sports under Agenda 2020, which was passed by the IOC in Dec. 2014.
Baseball and softball, which were last contested at the 2008 Olympics, are considered early favorites to return in 2020 due in part to their popularity in Japan.
“WBSC is hopeful that putting baseball and softball – Japan’s National sport – under the Tokyo 2020 umbrella could help further position the Olympic Games as the center of the sporting and cultural universe – and provide Tokyo 2020 organizers with another tool to shine the spotlight on the 2020 Games and on the host nation itself, optimizing fan-, youth- and overall engagement nationally and internationally,” the World Baseball Softball Confederation said in a statement. “With the existing baseball/softball venues throughout Japan, it could bring Tokyo 2020 and the Olympic Movement dividends – particularly in engaging both genders and youth -- with no associated construction costs and minimal operational costs – aligning with the Agenda 2020 vision.”
- Christopher Chavez