Eight sports are one step closer to being included in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo.
On Monday, Japanese organizers of the 2020 Olympics chose eight sports from a list of 26 that had applied for inclusion. The eight selected are: baseball/softball, squash, karate, surfing, bowling, roller sports (including skateboarding), sport climbing and wushu.
A majority of the sports are self-explanatory, but if you're like us, you need a larger explanation to squash and wushu.
Squash is a racquet sport—smaller than a tennis racquet—played by two singles or four players (doubles) in a four-walled court with a rubber ball, which is hollow. Here's a brief video description.
Wushu can be best described as a mixed martial arts (MMA) sport, in which grappling is allowed, although it appears to look more like kickboxing to the eye.
Other observations of the sports hoping for inclusion in the 2020 Summer Olympics are the combined bid of men's baseball/women's softball has a great chance, considering baseball's huge popularity in Japan, and that baseball used to be an Olympic sport.
That and we could hear all the serious bowlers out there say, 'See, bowling is a real sport...it's in the Olympics,' if it makes the cut in 2020. Also, how cool is it that surfing could be an Olympic sport?
The next step for the eight sports is to make presentations in Tokyo from August 7-8, with organizers for the 2020 games making their recommendations to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) by September 30. Of course, the next games will be the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, so there's plenty of time, but this has to be planned out well in advance.
According to a report, some of the sports that applied, but failed to make the cut in the past were: air sports, American football, bridge, chess, dance sport, floorball, flying disc, korfball, netball, polo, racquetball, sumo, tug of war, underwater sports, waterski and wakeboard.
Tug of war? Wow.
Which of the eight sports do you think will make the cut for the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo?