LA 2028 Olympics proposes adding flag football, cricket, other sports

FILE PHOTO: An LA2028 sign is seen at the Los Angeles Coliseum to celebrate Los Angeles being awarded the 2028 Olympic Games, in Los Angeles, California, U.S., September 13, 2017. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson/File Photo

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) -Organizers of the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics want cricket, flag football, lacrosse, squash and baseball-softball added to the event, they said on Monday.

The organizers' recommendations are subject to final approval by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), with a session set for Mumbai later this month. The Los Angeles Times reported that the sports are likely to be approved.

"In building the Olympic sport program, we were willing to challenge the status quo and think differently about what's possible for the Games in Los Angeles," LA28 CEO Kathy Carter said in a statement.

"We've landed on a bold and balanced proposal that will energize the Games with culturally relevant competition and boundless possibility."

Of those five sports, three have never been included in an Olympic program.

Flag football, squash and lacrosse would make their Olympic debut, if approved.

"We are one huge step closer to a monumental milestone for our sport and international community," said World Lacrosse, the sport's governing body, in a statement.

"We are on a path of ascendancy, and will be a great partner for LA28 and the IOC."

Cricket, which enjoys enormous global appeal, would return after appearing once at the 1900 Games, following the tremendous success for women's cricket at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

"Whilst this is not the final decision, it is a very significant landmark towards seeing cricket at the Olympics for the first time in more than a century," International Cricket Council Chairman Greg Barclay said in a statement.

Baseball was featured in several previous Games. It was added to the 2020 Tokyo program after being left off in 2012 and 2016, but it will not be a part of the Paris Games.

Softball, the female counterpart to baseball, has appeared at five previous editions of the Summer Games and was also left off the Paris agenda.

An IOC spokesperson said the LA28 proposal for the additional sports was "well received."

"Following the review by the Olympic Program Commission, a recommendation will be made to the IOC Executive Board (12-13 October in Mumbai). If accepted, it will then be presented to the IOC Session (15-17 October in Mumbai) for approval," the spokesperson said.

"We are looking forward to the upcoming presentations."

(Reporting by Rory Carroll in Los Angeles, Amy Tennery in New York, Karolos Grohmann and Amlan ChakrabortyEditing by Christian Radnedge, Pritha Sarkar and Richard Chang)

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