On Wednesday 29 May the International Olympic Committee Executive Council included squash in its shortlist of three sports for Olympic inclusion. The final vote will take place on 6 September in Rio, and one of squash, wrestling and baseball/softball will be included in the lineup for the 2020 Olympics.
Squash New Zealand has strongly supported the World Squash Federation's quest for Olympic inclusion by joining the 'Back the Bid' marketing strategy. This campaign is focussed on squash players and/or celebrities signing the 'Back the Bid' banner.
While still focussing on this aspect of the strategy, Squash New Zealand is now hoping to take the campaign further to incorporate ambush marketing. We are therefore asking YOU to print out and display a 'Back the Bid' banner anytime you attend an event that attract media attention (especially televised sporting events). The more the banner appears in the public eye, the more attention and discussion squash's Olympic cause should stimulate. Aside from helping the Olympic bid, this can only help to grow the sport throughout the country.
Any time you attend an event that might be televised, take a Back the Bid banner with you. If we can get these banners showing up in crowds at rugby, netball, league, football, basketball games, concerts, protests marches, art exhibitions... anything that might attract media, we'll gradually increase exposure for squash. The more the banners pop up on people's television screens, the more people will begin to ask themselves what they mean and research squash's Olympic bid.
Examples are shown in the photo-shopped montage below - please support this campaign in a tasteful and non-property damaging way!
Squash is not at an Olympic Sport... yet! But if World Squash has anything to do with it, it will be!
The 2020 Olympic Games will be limited to a maximum of 28 sports, therefore only one of the three shortlisted sports can be added to the Games and luckily, squash is one of these.
World Squash are busy campaigning and have contracted international agecy Vero to manage their bid (Vero were successful in getting the Games for Rio and in getting golf included in the 2016 Games, so have a proven Olympic bid record).
Squash is competing with baseball/softball and wrestling for a place in the 2020 Olympics. The original list of eight sports was shortlisted on 29 May by the IOC executive committee. A final decision on which sport will be a part of the 2020 Olympic Games will be made in September, along with the host city for those games.
Visit the website at www.squash2020.com to see how you can BACK THE BID!
Some great highlights of why squash should be in the Olympics
Show your Support through Social Media. World Squash have set up a media campaign to show the IOC that everyone loves squash and wants squash to be in the Olympics. To show your support and increase awareness you can do either of the following:
The media exposure of the Olympics is unprecedented with any other event so squash will benefit in being exposed to millions of viewers worldwide. The local media coverage during the Olympics will also have a huge impact on promoting the sport within New Zealand.
Importantly, Squash in NZ will benefit financially in more than one way. Every participating sport receives income from TV rights and some of this will filter through to Squash NZ. Being an Olympic sport also increases opportunites for funding within NZ, such as that available from High Performance Sport NZ.
World Squash bid for inclusion into the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games but were unsuccessful in both. However, both attempts have provided great experience with lots of feedback and World Squash have taken on board much of that feedback and made vast improvements in the game.
For more information about previous Olympic bids for squash inclusion, see the World Squash website www.worldsquash.org