Lausanne (Switzerland), June 10: Having the agenda of encouraging sports, the International Olympic Committee on Friday approved a number of new events for the 2020 Tokyo Games. The decision of introducing new games for the 2020 Tokyo Games was taken at the IOC’s Executive Board meeting held in Lausanne, Switzerland.
However, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will see an increase of 15 events but an overall reduction of 285 athletes. Mixed relays in athletics, swimming, 3-on-3 basketball, mixed doubles in table tennis, mixed team events in judo, shooting and archery and a mixed team triathlon are now amongst new events that are added to 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The IOC’s focus in selecting the new events was for their appeal to young and urban audiences as well as for redressing long-standing imbalances between male and female athletes. IOC also reduced the number of athletes who will be competing in Tokyo olympics by 285 compared to Rio in order to prevent the games from being increasingly bloated and costly.
IOC President Thomas Bach said the new disciplines would make the games "more youthful, more urban and will include more women". An IOC statement said Tokyo would include a 4x400m mixed relay in athletics and a 4x100m medley mixed relay in swimming. Swimming would also include two further new events - a men's 800m and women's 1500m freestyle race.
The IOC said the numbers of athletes in some sports would be cut with athletics (105 fewer athletes), weightlifting (64) and wrestling (56) the main casualties. On the other hand, basketball would have 64 extra participants. The world athletics body (IAAF) said it was delighted at the inclusion of mixed relays but disappointed in the reduction in its athletes quota.
It said mixed relays had been "hugely successful and appealing for athletes and spectators alike". "Pitching teams of two men and two women together with the added dimension of team tactics, make this a vibrant, youthful and exciting competition."
But it added, "Whilst we understand the need to be firm on numbers and applaud the IOC's stance on gender equality in all sports, reducing the quota will inevitably have an impact on our joint goals of universality."
3-on-3 basketball, an urban sport where the teams aim for the same hoop, was introduced at the Youth Olympic Games in Singapore 2010 and Nanjing in 2014. The IOC said that men's and women's madison would be added to track cycling and Freestyle Park to BMX cycling. Boxing, canoeing and rowing had agreed to reduce the number of men's events in exchange for more women's events.
It said there would be a net increase of 15 events, an overall reduction of 285 athletes compared to Rio in 2016 and "the highest representation of female athletes in Olympic history". The decision is a significant step towards having equal numbers of male and female athletes and events at the Games, the IOC added.
Importantly, the IOC is the supreme authority of the Olympic Movement headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland. It is a not-for-profit independent international organization comprised of volunteers. It was founded on 23rd June 1894. The IOC Session and Executive Board are responsible for making important decisions for the organization.