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2020 Tokyo Olympic Games: Japan boosting efforts for inclusion of Baseball and Softball

posted Nov 25, 2014, 12:47 PM by Unknown user


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                 25 NOVEMBER 2014




Tokyo 2020 chief, Yoshiro Mori, says baseball/softball in 2020 would be a "big plus".



TOKYO -- As support for baseball and softball to be included in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games continues to mount across Japan, with a growing chorus from all parts of the globe, the political group consisting of 67 Diet Members campaigning for baseball and softball at the Olympic Games assembled in Tokyo for the second time in a month last Tuesday, November 18 in the Japanese Diet.


Kazuhiro Tawa, Senior Advisor of Baseball Federation of Japan, and Taeko Utsugi, Vice President of Japan Softball Association -- as well as World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) executive member -- made presentations to the supportive Diet members, exchanged ideas and were encouraged to expand the baseball/softball Olympic inclusion campaign.


The Diet Federation members from the LDP of Japan recognized the ongoing work by the baseball/softball family, including the screening of the promotional video on the stadium jumbotron during the recent WBSC-sanctioned "Japan Series" between the top-ranked Japanese National Baseball Team, Samurai Japan, and the MLB All-Stars at the Tokyo Dome, and University/High School Baseball Championship at Meiji Jingu Stadium.


Immediately following the Diet meeting, the 40-proposal Olympic Agenda 2020 reform programme was released from the International Olympic Committee's headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland.  


The potential reforms being introduced by the IOC would allow host cities to propose the inclusion of one or more events for their games -- a move which would clear the way for baseball and softball to be included in the 2020 Games.


IOC Vice-President John Coates, who was visiting Tokyo with his IOC Coordination Commission team, and Chairman of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Organizing Committee Yoshiro Mori, spoke to the media on how the IOC President Thomas Bach's reform agenda could affect planning for Tokyo 2020.


"In the case of Japan, including baseball and softball would be a great idea," Mori said at the news conference last Wednesday. "The two sports are very popular in Japan and having them on the program would be a big plus."


The Olympic Agenda 2020 reforms will be put to a vote by the full IOC membership at a special session in Monaco on December 8-9.


The first/last bid from the new world governing body, WBSC, to include baseball and softball in the 2020 Olympic Games was at the 125th IOC Session in Buenos Aires, Argentina in September 2013, where wrestling was voted back onto the official Olympic Programme the day after Tokyo was announced as the host of the 2020 Olympic Games. 


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About the World Baseball Softball Confederation:

Headquartered in the Olympic Capital city of Lausanne, Switzerland, the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) was established in April 2013 and granted recognition as the sole competent authority in baseball and softball by the International Olympic Committee at the 125th IOC Session in September 2013. The WBSC represents a united baseball/softball sports movement that encompasses over 65 million athletes worldwide.


The WBSC governs all international competitions involving any of the National Teams of its 141 National Federation members.  


The WBSC also oversees the Baseball World Cups and Softball World Championships and is the only sports organisation in the world that oversees a U-12 youth national team world championship.


The WBSC currently has National Federation members in 141 countries and territories across Asia, Africa, Americas (Caribbean, Central-, North- and South-America), Europe and Oceania. 


For further information, please go to www.WBSC.co.