A bid by Billiards to join the sports program at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games was formally launched Friday during a ceremony at the Eiffel Tower in the French Capital.
The bid is supported by the World Professional Billiards and Snooker Association (WPBSA) and the World Snooker Federation (WSF) who hope to leverage the strong growth of cue sports internationally.
Jason Ferguson, President of the WSF told the gathering “today represents an important landmark in what is a serious bid for the inclusion of billiard sports at the Paris 2024 Games.
“With the levels of participation in our great sport consistently increasing and new opportunities being created by the WSF and its partners for people across the globe to be able to pick up a cue, the sport has never been in a stronger position to take its rightful place on the Olympic program.”
According to a statement by the WSF, billiards “has as a proven track record of staging high-quality international events with the World Snooker Tour now comprising 27 major tournaments around the world, with a television reach of 1.6 billion homes.
“The sport is played in approximately 100 countries with players from across the globe regularly participating.”
The campaign has launched a Website at https://billiards2024.paris/.
The Fédération Française de Billard (FFB) made an application for the sport to be considered for the Paris 2024 Games earlier this year.
Billiards launched an unsuccessful bid to be staged at the Tokyo 2020 Games but Japanese organizers instead chose five other sports – baseball and softball, karate, skateboarding, sport climbing and surfing. Those sports are also expected to pursue a spot on the 2024 program.
The Paris 2024 organizing committee is expected to propose additional sports to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) before an all-members Session in June 2019. The IOC Executive Board will need to approve the recommendations in 2020 before the sports can be added to the program.
The sport of Boules, popular across France, is also vying for one of the coveted spots on the Olympic program. Other sports could come forward as well including Squash, a sport that has failed in three consecutive attempts to join the Games.
A senior producer and award-winning journalist covering Olympic bid business as founder of GamesBids.com as well as providing freelance support for print and Web publications around the world. Robert Livingstone is a member of the Olympic Journalists Association and the International Society of Olympic Historians.