After an arduous 112-year hiatus, golf became an Olympic game again in Rio this summer with much success and decent ratings. Still, it wasn’t a sure thing for the 2024 games. But according to a report by The Guardian, it looks like it’s here to stay. Confirmation should come in early 2017, but an official vote won’t happen until September 2017, when the Committee concludes its plans for 2020 and beyond.
An anonymous source within the International Olympic Committee was quoted as saying it would be “very surprising” if golf was left off the roster for the next couple of scheduled Games, but it remains to be seen if golf has staying power. The players had overall positive experiences, including Justin Rose and Inbee Park, who took home gold medals for the UK and South Korea.
The interest and excitement surrounding golf in Rio was perhaps surprising. Rio had to build a golf course, for one thing, and there was no planned infrastructure for it. Not to mention there seemed to be little interest in the game in that part of the globe up to that point, and several leading players did not get on board to play for various reasons. But enthusiasm seemed to grow with time, and quite a lot of buzz and even decent TV ratings gave golf the boost it needed.
The International Golf Federation is thrilled with its potential within the future of the Olympics. There are plans to highlight golf’s growing power in Southeast Asia during the 2020 Games in Tokyo.
The IGF’s Peter Dawson says, “It is very important that we continue to be a supportive, contributing member of the Olympic family. We believe the values of our sport complement those of the Olympic movement and I am both hopeful and confident that we will continue to play our part beyond 2020.”
Finalists for the 2024 Olympic Games are: Los Angeles, Paris, Budapest, and Hungary.