Sporting "flexibility" emphasised by Bach as new sports announced for Nanjing 2014

Saturday, 14 December 2013
By Nick Butler

Sport climbing will be among new sports showcased at Nanjing 2014, Bach announced ©AFP/Getty ImagesDecember 14 - Sport climbing, roller sports and skateboarding will each be showcased at next year's Summer Youth Olympic Games in Nanjing, International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach revealed today.

The presence of the three sports was highlighted by Bach as one of a number of decisions agreed following the conclusion of a special brainstorming session of the IOC Executive Board Meeting in the Swiss resort of Montreux.

Bach clarified that "performances" in the three sports - along with another in wushu which had previously been announced - will not occur in a competitive sense but to raise awareness of them to the citizens of Nanjing and a global youth population.

The announcement marks an upturn in fortunes for roller sports, sport climbing and wushu in particular as they, along with wakeboarding and karate, were the sports eliminated in the first round of voting for inclusion at the 2020 Games, a race ultimately won by wrestling. 

With the youth audience in mind no doubt, skateboarding will be among the sports pioneered in Nanjing ©Getty ImagesWith the youth audience in mind, skateboarding will be among the sports pioneered in Nanjing ©Getty Images




The news comes a month after Bach met Dr Raffaele Chiulli, head of the IOC Recognised International Sports Federations (ARISF), and agreed to set up a Liaison Committee to help improve relations and cooperation between Olympic and non-Olympic disciplines.

It is though that, rather like demonstration events held at Olympic Games of the past, the presence of the sports in Nanjing will be a significant opportunity to raise exposure, particularly due to the young audience which the Youth Olympic Games will provide.

Bach was, however, more coy about the prospects of another sport being added to the Tokyo 2020 programme following his suggestion on a visit to Japan last month that baseball and softball could be included despite losing out to wrestling in the official race. 

He emphasised that "nothing has changed" since his words in the Japanese capital and that it could potentially occur at the end of next year but only if there was unanimous support from throughout the IOC.  

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