On Monday, the International Olympic Committee officially approved baseball/softball, cricket (T20), flag football, lacrosse (Sixes), and squash for inclusion in the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.
The LA28 Organizing Committee recommended the sports last week, and the IOC executive board put them up for a full vote after reviewing and approving them. The 141st Session of the IOC then decided to add them to the 2028 program officially.
“The choice of these five new sports is in line with the American sports culture and will showcase iconic American sports to the world while bringing international sports to the United States,” IOC president Thomas Bach said. “Their inclusion will allow the Olympic Movement to engage with new athlete and fan communities in the U.S. and globally.”
Baseball/softball, cricket, and lacrosse return to the Games after most recently being medal sports at Tokyo 2020, Paris 1900, and London 1908, respectively.
Flag football and squash will be making their Olympic debuts. The former is particularly intriguing given football’s enormous status in the United States.
The National Football League has made concerted efforts to spread the sport globally, with flag football as its centerpiece. Some current and former NFL players have already expressed interest in playing at the 2028 Games.
In Mumbai, the IOC approved its executive board’s recommendation to include modern pentathlon in the 2028 program, stipulating that horse riding will be replaced with obstacle racing. Weightlifting will also remain at the 2028 Games after the International Weightlifting Federation delegated its anti-doping management to the International Testing Agency and its sanctioning to the Court of Arbitration for Sport through at least 2028.
Meanwhile, boxing’s inclusion in the program is on hold after the IOC withdrew its recognition of the International Boxing Association and has not yet recognized another governing body.