Lausanne: At last cricket has made its first step towards the long route of becoming an Olympic sport when it earned the 'provisional recognition status' from the International Olympic Council (IOC).
Cricket, alongwith sport climbing was given this status, for sports not in the Olympic programme, but which confirm to certain criteria of the movement in terms of youth promotion and anti-doping policies, for a mandatory period of two years.
''Both the sports (cricket and sport climbing) showed a lot of activity and work with youth,'' IOC spokeswoman Giselle Davies told newspersons after the first day of IOC's executive board meeting.
Cricket's inclusion in Olympic sport will only be reviewed after the 2012 London Games as by 2008 Beijing Olympics it will not have spent the mandatory two-year provisional status. Moreover, the Olympic programme is determined seven years ahead of every Games.
Following the grant of this status, there is a possibility that the 2020 Olympic games might just see cricket in their official list of games.
Besides cricket and sport climbing, sumo wrestling is also a provisionally recognised Olympic sport, whereas rugby, golf, squash, bridge and tug-of-war have alreday become fully recognised sports.