The seven sports hoping to be added to the 2016 Olympic Games made their pleas to the IOC executive board yesterday. Their representatives took it in turn to talk up their chances.
Softball officials said they were 'quietly confident'. International Softball Federation president Don Porter said softball and the IOC 'shared the same DNA.' The sport was first part of the Olympics in 1996 in Atlanta but has been excluded of the 2012 London games.
Those presenting for rugby sevens said inclusion 'would be good for the Olympic Games and good for rugby.' The president of the International Rugby Board Bernard Lapasset said: 'I feel that we left a positive impression of a united and committed team with the members.'
Baseball representatives said they made an 'effective' pitch for Olympic re-instatement. Their presentation highlighted a year-round marketing plan, grassroots growth, leadership in anti-doping and the potential for a women's event.
Squash was keen to show how the infrastructure of the sport had been improved and how it could be incorporated cheaply into the games. World Squash president N Ramachandran said the presentation 'showed squash to its full potential.'
The golf party said it had 'worked hard to dispel the idea that their top level multi-million dollar players might not be available for participating in the games.' To prove the point, star players Colin Montgomerie and Annika Sorenstam both spoke to the board.
Karate officials said the sport would be a non-contact version and award points for specific moves, reports Reuters.
The report also quoted representatives for rollersports as saying that they offered an exciting concept with several competitions of in-line skating.
Rollersports federation general secretary Roberto Marotta said: 'If they want to get young people with a new, dynamic sport they can follow our proposal. We don't need any facilities. We can do it in a car park or a road.'
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