Chasing Olympic glory

BERLIN - A chance like this comes round only once every four years and seven sports are hoping they have what it takes to be included in the 2016 Olympics.

BERLIN - A chance like this comes round only once every four years and seven sports are hoping they have what it takes to be included in the 2016 Olympics.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) will announce a shortlist of two sports today and in two months' time a final vote will decide whether they will be part of the Games programme.

Squash, rugby, softball, baseball, karate, rollersports and golf are bidding to make that shortlist, which will be announced during the IOC executive board meeting in Berlin.

The IOC, in an effort to revamp the Games schedule to attract younger audiences, has decided to introduce a maximum of two new sports for 2016.

In 2005, baseball and softball became the first sports to be dropped from the Olympics since polo was excluded in 1936.

"We believe we have a compelling case as we continue to promote sport in developing communities around the world, with a particular focus on women and young people," said International Softball Federation chief Don Porter.

The Games programme is always decided seven years in advance with the shortlisted candidates needing a simple majority at the IOC session in October.

IOC president Jacques Rogge has ruled out any other sports getting on to the programme if the session rejects the board's proposals. - Reuters

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