Popularity of Softball at Cali World Games Boosts 2020 Olympic Games Bid

August 5, 2013

The basbeball/softball bid for the 2020 Olympic Games has received a boost after softball proved to be a hit at the Cali 2013 World Games.

Softball matches were played in front of packed crowds in the 2000-seater venue at the World Games, making the World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) confident the news would help in their bid to play at the 2020 Olympic Games.

Baseball/softball, squash and wrestling are competing to be included in the 2020 Olympic Games and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) will make their decision in September.

The IOC are focused on numerous factors, including the engagement of young people, and the popularity of softball at the World Games, along with the large crowds at the recent U12 Baseball World Cup, has given the merged bid new optimism.

WBSC co-president, Don Porter said: “These events have helped highlight the power, potential of women’s sport, and especially the unique skills and excitement of bat and ball sports like baseball and softball, which are currently not found on the Olympic Programme.

“We are hoping the IOC will find a place for baseball and softball at the Olympic Games in 2020, and in doing so, send a message to girls and young women everywhere that the Olympic Games and the values of the Movement are for them, and give more girls the opportunity to strive for a place in the Olympics, the pinnacle for every young athlete.”

Cuba eventually overtook Venezuela with a 3-2 victory to claim Gold in the Cali World Games.