Women’s T20 Cricket Success In CWG May Enable Game’s Entry Into Olympics
Women’s T20 Cricket Success In CWG May Enable Game’s Entry Into Olympics: Cricket was played in the Olympics for the first and last time—albeit only for men—in Paris in 1900, therefore the introduction of women’s Twenty20 cricket at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham was a significant step toward the sport’s eventual inclusion in the 2028 edition in Los Angeles.
Since there was no men’s T20 cricket tournament, all eyes were on the women’s sport at the Commonwealth Games. Cricket was last included at the Commonwealth Games in 1998 when it was played as a men’s List A event in Kuala Lumpur.
Women’s Twenty20 cricket and the Edgbaston Cricket Ground in Birmingham have a shared past. There, in 1973, two years before the men’s Cricket World Cup ever existed, the first-ever women’s Cricket World Cup final took place, with England and Australia being the competing nations.
Now, after the thrilling cricket action at Edgbaston, which resulted in Australia winning the gold medal, the moment may have come to push for cricket’s inclusion in the Olympics.
The International Cricket Council (ICC) has been invited to give a presentation on the sport’s inclusion, so the excitement of the Commonwealth Games, which ran from July 29 to August 7 this year, will still be fresh in the minds of the observers.
Full houses cheered on the greatest players in the world throughout the course of 10 days of competition at Edgbaston. The final was a wonderful advert for the women’s game, and the fans from all eight competing nations made it seem like a home game, said ICC Chief Executive Geoff Allardice.
Cricket was originally included in the Olympics in 1900 when they were held in Paris. The only countries to enter the competition were England and the hosts, France, with the English winning the gold.
Cricket hasn’t been featured in the Olympics since 2008, but there have been a lot of changes to the sport since then, so there’s reason to believe that the Twenty20 format, which has been featured in the Commonwealth Games and the Olympics in 2010 and 2014 but has been postponed until Hangzhou, China, can make a comeback.
If stringent over limits are enforced, the T20 format can be completed in under three hours, making it possible for the game to be played during the Olympic period. Cricket has struggled greatly to overcome the widespread doubt that surrounds its legitimacy as an international sport worthy of inclusion in the Olympic Games.
There are currently 12 full members and 94 associate members in the ICC. These members include footballing heavyweights like Argentina and Brazil. The cricketing globe has a sufficient number of high-class teams to maintain the level of competition and quality of play that serves as the foundation of any global sport.
Even more surprisingly, just 2.5 billion people worldwide are cricket fans. Most of these fans are located in South Asia, followed by Australia and the United Kingdom.
Football, which is popular throughout Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Americas, has 3.5 billion admirers, putting it in second place. Adding cricket to the Olympics will expose the sport to a new audience that isn’t necessarily cricket fans but is interested in watching multi-sport events.
I believe that including cricket in major multi-sport events like the Olympic Games, the Commonwealth Games, the Asian Games, and the African Games is beneficial to the development of cricket. For one, it ensures that many of our member countries have a voice in the decision-making of national sports governing bodies. Allardice has mentioned this before Birmingham 2022, and it’s true for two reasons: one, the coverage of these games reaches new audiences that may not be conventional cricket fans; and two, the games themselves are spectacular.
The Commonwealth Games present an opportunity to expand our audience, he continued. It’s been obvious for at least the past five years that our women’s competitions are of the highest calibre.
“The players are great advocates for our sport. I have no doubt that cricket will be a huge draw at the Commonwealth Games. This bodes well for our future goals in any other multi-sport competitions.
In spite of the cloud that Covid-19 cast over an otherwise excellent final between Australia and India, we can be confident that the success of the women’s T20 event at the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games will have played a significant role in bringing cricket to the greatest global sporting platform.