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Top Olympic Bid Stories of 2012: #8 Baseball and Softball Pool Efforts to Return to Olympics

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GamesBids.com presents the fifth annual Top Ten list of Olympic Bid Stories for 2012. These stories impacted the course of Olympic bids, or the Olympic bid process, and formed interesting plotlines for the year. We'll run them down from 10th to 1st during the holiday season.

Top Olympic Bid Stories of 2012: #8 Baseball and Softball Pool Efforts to Return to Olympics

Olympic medals for baseball and softball were last awarded at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing after which they were removed from the program.  Many believed that the sports were not universal enough.

Both sports have been working tirelessly to return to the Games; they competed separately for two openings at the 2016 Rio Games (the IOC voted to include golf and rugby sevens instead) and each initiated campaigns to be reinstated at the 2020 Games.  But with baseball involving only male athletes and softball rosters including only women - and both sports sharing similar venues - the sports federations decided to pool their efforts and jointly bid as a single sport.

In December they created the World Baseball Softball Confederation and will try to get both styles of sport added to the 28 sport Olympic program for 2020.

It won't be easy though; first the IOC must vote to eliminate at least one current sport and then the joint bid will have to defeat five other sports with Squash and Karate being current favourites.  The IOC will make these decision in Buenos Aires next September.

Watch for more of the top-ten over the next week.

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