Olympic Squash 2028

Jan 2024

Olympic Squash 2028

Squash is a racket sport that's been played for over a century, but has never been part of the Olympic Games. Despite being very popular in many countries and regions, squash has faced several challenges and disappointments in its bid to join the Olympic family. However, after decades of lobbying and campaigning, squash finally got the green light to make its debut at the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic Games. This is atruly historic moment for the sport and its fans, who hope that the Olympic exposure will boost its growth and development worldwide.

The History of Squash’s Olympic Ambitions

Squash originated in England in the late 19th century, as a variation of the older game of rackets. It soon spread to other parts of the British Empire, such as India, Pakistan, Egypt, and Australia, where it developed a strong following. Squash became a recognised international sport in 1967, when the first men’s world championship was held. The women’s world championship followed a few years later in 1976.

Squash first applied for Olympic recognition in 1986, but was rejected by the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The sport tried again in 1992, 1996, and 2000, but each time failed to secure enough votes from the IOC members. Squash faced several obstacles, such as the lack of global television coverage, the difficulty of capturing the fast-paced action on camera, the low public awareness, and the competition from other sports. Furthermore, unless you've ever tried to play the sport, the professional players can make it look a little too easy. The reality is far, far different. The physical conditioning and mental endurance required to sustain long 'rallies' within a game require years of dedicated training and input.  

Squash made some significant changes to improve its chances of Olympic inclusion. It introduced new technologies, such as glass courts, video refereeing, and interactive scoring systems, to make the sport more spectator-friendly and transparent. It also increased its efforts to promote the sport in new markets, especially in Asia and Africa, where it organized grassroots programs and events. Squash also showcased its diversity and gender equality, as it had equal prize money and opportunities for men and women.

Squash came closest to achieving its Olympic dream in 2005, when it was shortlisted for the 2012 London Olympics, along with karate, roller sports, golf, rugby sevens, and baseball/softball. However, yet again, squash lost out to golf and rugby sevens, which were ultimately added to the Olympic program. Squash tried again for the 2016 Rio Olympics, and, despite being shortlisted was then rejected, again in favor of golf and rugby sevens. Squash suffered yet another blow in 2013, when it was shortlisted for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, but it was again overlooked, as the IOC chose to reinstate wrestling, which had been dropped earlier.

The Breakthrough for Squash

Squash did not give up on its Olympic aspirations though, and it finally got its breakthrough in 2019, when the IOC announced a new process for adding sports to the Olympic program. The IOC gave more flexibility and autonomy to the host cities, allowing them to propose additional sports that were relevant to their culture and context. 

Squash has now been accepted for inclusion in the 2028 edition of the Olympic Games in Los Angeles.The LA2028 organising committee have formally agreed to include squash along with four other sports — flag football, baseball-softball, lacrosse, and cricket.

What now for the Worlds Healthiest Sport?

Squash's inclusion in the 2028 Olympics is expected to significantly boost the sport's profile and attract new fans. The sport's inclusion in the Olympics will provide a platform for squash players to showcase their skills and compete against the world's best athletes. The inclusion of squash in the Olympics will also provide an opportunity for the sport to grow and expand globally.

In conclusion, the inclusion of squash in the 2028 Olympics is a significant milestone for the sport, and its inclusion in the 2028 Olympics is a testament to the sport's growing popularity and global appeal. The sport's inclusion in the Olympics is expected to boost the sport's profile and attract new fans. The inclusion of squash in the Olympics will also provide an opportunity for the sport to grow and expand globally. For Shropshire Squash Club it means a likely increase in interest and demand for membership - and we're ready to welcome new players and help to build skills, confidence and join in with a socialable, friendly and engaging community!

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