MCC backs cricket at the Olympic GamesView(s):
When cricket made its Olympic debut at the Paris Games of 1900 there were just two teams involved. A Great Britain team comprising club cricketers from Devon and Somerset took on the French Athletic Club Union, a side composed almost entirely of British expatriates living in France.
The two teams were the only entrants in the competition after Dutch and Belgian opponents withdrew, and played in front of only a reported dozen or so British servicemen at the Velodrome de Vincennes cycling arena, a stadium capable of seating up to 20,000 spectators.
Not surprisingly, cricket’s Olympic debut was also its swansong. But the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) is hoping to restore cricket’s place on the Olympic roster. A place at the greatest sporting party on the planet would help develop the game globally and particularly in China, according to its world cricket committee.
The concept of an Olympic cricket competition, along with the global use of the Decision Review System (DRS) and pink balls for day/night Test matches, was discussed at a presentation last week. The panel included former England captain Michael Vaughan and captain of the England women’s team Charlotte Edwards.
“The committee subsequently discussed the possibilities of cricket becoming an Olympic sport and believes this may be an important route for developing the game around the world and particularly in China,” a statement read.
But what are the chances of cricket following the likes of golf and rugby sevens and gaining a presence at the Olympic Games? “I can totally imagine cricket as an Olympic sport,” says Rodney Miles, the former chairman of the Hong Kong Cricket Club (HKCC) who addressed the MCC on the subject this week. “The President of the International Olympic Committee, Jacques Rogge, has said he wants cricket at the Olympics. He makes the obvious connection that it is a huge televised worldwide sport. Logically, why isn’t it part of the Games?”
Rogge offered his support for the inclusion of a shorter form of the game in June 2011, a year after the IOC recognised the International Cricket Council (ICC) as an official global sporting body.
- Courtesy BBC
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