By Tom Degun

Karate K on the WayMarch 26 - Karate's bid to join the sports programme for the 2020 Olympic Games has received a timely boost with latest figures showing that the Official World Karate Federation (WKF) YouTube Channel has received nearly two million visits.

Karate are currently bidding against baseball/softball, climbing, karate, roller sport, squash, wakeboard, wrestling and wushu for a single spot on the programme at the 2020 Olympics.

All eight bids will present to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board on the first day of their meeting in St Petersburg on May 29 before it is announced which bids will remain on the shortlist.

It is widely predicted that only three of the eight sports will remain on the shortlist and go through to the full IOC vote at the Session in Buenos Aires in September.

Karate will now be increasingly confident of making it through to the vote in Buenos Aires with latest figures showing that the Official WKF YouTube Channel has 1,714,658 views and 11,419 subscribers.

Around 80 per cent of the views have come from male and 20 per cent from females.

The majority of hits have come from Italy, the United States and Brazil.

"We are facing an amazing media phenomenon that helps to motivate karate all over the world," said a WKF statement.

"This is especially the case amongst young people with new technologies such as YouTube."

The announcement comes with over 19,000 people having backed karate's 2020 Olympic bid on Facebook on their "The K is on the Way" page.

An analysis of Facebook users has shown that 73.5 per cent of karate followers are aged below 35 years-old.

"These findings indicate how many young adults have embraced karate," added the WKF.

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