With the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic Games announcing the addition of five new sports, the question must be asked. What other sports could be next in line for their debut in the Summer Olympics? Here’s two sports that should be added, and one that is long overdue to be played on the world stage.
Futsal, or indoor soccer, is a sport that needs to be included in upcoming Olympic events. The younger, but increasingly famous, little sibling of football (or soccer as it is called here), futsal is rapidly growing. An estimated 30 million participants play globally according to the world governing body FIFA.
It is an exhilarating sport played at a very fast pace, as players try to outfox one another with dazzling displays of skills. The game will leave you in awe and make you want to scream “Ole!” Search ‘Falcao Futsal Skills’ on YouTube, and you will understand what I mean.
Previously, futsal was included in the Olympics at the 2018 Summer Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires, but it’s yet to be included in the main showpiece.
Interestingly, Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, the two gods of soccer, have both said that futsal helped them become the players that they are today. The best have endorsed it, so it’s only right that futsal is showcased in the battlefield of gods itself, the Olympics!
Over a hundred million people bowl worldwide, and yet, it has never been included as a competitive Olympic event. It has only appeared as an exhibition event at the Seoul 1998 Olympics. For something so popular to be shunned by the Olympics is puzzling.
Knocking down pins might sound easy and playful, but it involves pinpoint accuracy, skill, and high levels of concentration–some of the attributes that many world-class athletes in other Olympic-recognized sports also possess.
If sports like breakdancing and skateboarding can be included in the 2024 Olympics, then it is only fair that bowling be given a chance in the future too. The International Bowling Federation states in its official website that one of its purposes is to promote bowling as a sport for Olympic status. I sincerely hope that this status will be achieved someday. Sticks and stones may break my bones, but pins to bowl, I do condone!
Though not included in the 2024 Olympic Games, after years of battle and constant lobbying, squash has finally cemented its place in the 2028 Olympics. To quote Nicol David, the former eight-time world squash champion who has vehemently used her platform to advocate for squash, “All the hard work, blood, sweat and tears have finally paid off for our beloved squash to be acknowledged as an Olympic Games sport’. Rated the healthiest sport in the world by Forbes magazine in 2003, the inclusion of squash as an Olympic event is indeed great news. For the uninitiated, prepare to be mesmerized by a high-octane sport that will give you the same or greater thrill that you get from watching badminton and tennis.