¡Habemus golf!
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Last updated: Tuesday, October 13, 2009
Just as it was expected, last Friday the IOC approved the inclusion of golf into Rio de Janeiro 2016 program. The news buried other sport’s hopes, such as baseball, softball, squash, karate and others.Olympic GolfGolf debuted in Paris 1900 and the last time it was part of the Olympic Games was in St. Louis 1904.

Golf’s comeback isn’t a surprise, the International Golf Federation used as many resources as it had and had the best players in the world to speak on behalf of the sport:

Here’s a time table with the highlights of the process:
11/14/08: Ty Votaw (PGA) and Peter Dawson (R&A) talked with the Olympic Program Committee.

12/22/08: a questionnaire was sent in order to contend for a spot.

02/16/09:
the document was sent back to the IOC.

06/15/09
: Annika Sörenstam, Colin Montgomerie, among others, talked to the Executive Board of the IOC.

08/13/09:
the Board recommends golf for its inclusion into the 2016 Program.

10/09/09:
Michelle Wie, Pagraig Harrington and Suzan Pettersen went to Copenhagen to give the last speech. Finally golf got a spot with 63 votes and 2 absences.
The International Golf Federation proposed a format of 72-hole individual stroke play for both men and women. In case of a tie a three-hole playoff is recommended to determine the medal winners.
The Olympic field should include 60 players for each of the men’s and women’s competition, using the Official World Golf Rankings as a method of determining eligibility. The top-15 world-ranked players would be eligible for the Olympics, regardless of the number of players from a given country. Beyond the top 15, each country will have a maximum of two eligible players.
If this becomes a reality, then at least 30 countries would be represented. Still there’s a doubt in the air: will Tiger, Lorena and other dominant players will continue to play until 2016? Will others, such as Annika might leave retirement? We’ll see, it’s a long ways to go and we can have a few surprises.


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