World Squash Federation (WSF) President N Ramachandran has met with Tokyo 2020 head Yoshiro Mori as squash continues its drive for inclusion on the Olympic programme.
Ramachandran, who also met with figures including Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) President Tsunekazu Takeda, emphasised why his sport should be chosen, citing reasons such as low cost, gender equality and the versatility of the sport.
The WSF President also highlighted the fact that the sport is renowned for the athleticism of competitors and that it is played in 185 countries across the world.
"I was grateful for this opportunity to meet Mr Mori and Mr Takeda, and to highlight how serious WSF is in its efforts for squash to be included in the Olympics as a medal sport," Ramachandran, also President of the Indian Olympic Association, said.
"I was also able to reaffirm that every single top squash player would value competing in the Olympic Games higher than any other event, if we are chosen.
"To reinforce this message, I was able to present Mr Mori with a WSF flag signed by all the top women players competing in the recent Women's World Team Championship."
The news comes after karate officials in Japan met with the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at the Prime Ministerial residence in Tokyo in December.
Under the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) Agenda 2020 plan, which was unanimously passed at the IOC's Extraordinary Session in Monte Carlo in November, there appears to be more scope for further sports to be added to the Olympic programme, with the restriction now on the amount of events rather than the amount of sports.
Squash is vying for inclusion along with other sports such as baseball and softball - widely considered the favourite to be added - along with the likes of karate, skateboarding, surfing and sport climbing.
However, the practical implications of the Agenda 2020 changes remain ambiguous and the IOC is yet to confirm whether a new sport will be added or not.
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