Sitting Volleyball is one of 23 sports confirmed by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Governing Board on Thursday to have progressed to the next stage of assessment for inclusion in the Paris 2024 Paralympic sport programme.
After a thorough review of applications from 28 sports for inclusion in Paris 2024, the sports that will proceed to the next stage are the 22 sports included in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, together with CP Football.
“This reflects the great work by everyone at World ParaVolley in ensuring that Sitting Volleyball remains in contention to continue to be one of the key events at the Paralympics,” World ParaVolley Sports Director Laurent Torrecillas said. “Following the great success of Sitting Volleyball at London 2012 and Rio 2016 we are looking forward to another great event at Tokyo 2020 and Paris 2024. This also complements World ParaVolley’s long term vision to have Beach ParaVolley included in the Paralympics as well at Los Angeles 2028.”
Sitting Volleyball was first included in the Paralympics in 1980 in Arnhem, the Netherlands with a men’s tournament before a women’s tournament was also included in 2004 in Athens. Iran are six time men’s Olympic champions including Rio 2016 while USA beat three-time champions China in the women’s gold medal match two years ago.
Sports had until 9 July to complete application packs that featured a series of questions that gave the IPC detailed information regarding each sport’s governance, rules and regulations, anti-doping programme compliance and activities, worldwide reach, quadrennial competition programme and procedures to ensure athlete welfare. Classification Code compliance was also assessed and the IPC considered the costs and complexity of operations on the Paris 2024 Organising Committee, in line with Olympic Agenda 2020 and the New Norm.
At its meeting in Madrid, Spain, on 10 and 11 September, the IPC Board decided that golf, karate, Para dance sport, powerchair football and sailing will not be considered further for inclusion in Paris 2024 after failing to meet the inclusion criteria in a number of areas.
Following the Board’s decision, the IPC will now provide feedback to the remaining 23 sports and ask several of them for further information to be submitted by 3 December. The IPC Governing Board will then decide on the final Paris 2024 Paralympic sport programme at its meeting in January. Feedback will also be provided to the five sports that have been eliminated from the Paris 2024 race.
Andrew Parsons, IPC President, said: “I would like to congratulate the 23 sports that have reached the next stage of the process for inclusion in the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games. At the same time I would like to pass on my commiserations to those sports that will not proceed further.
“After reviewing all the applications it is clear that the level of competition to be included in the Paralympic programme is higher than ever before with all sports making progress since the last time we conducted this exercise four years ago for Tokyo 2020.
“We want the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games to showcase the best possible Para sports with the strongest global appeal. Following review of the further information we receive from international federations we will make our final decision on the number of sports and which sports are included in January once we have full agreement from the IOC and Paris 2024.”
Other key decisions
Following the IPC Gathering in Madrid, which attracted more than 200 people from over 100 IPC members including World ParaVolley President Barry Couzner OAM, the IPC Governing Board discussed the key outcomes of the discussions and next steps relating to the creation of the IPC Strategic Plan 2019-2023. The next steps with regards to the IPC Governance Review were also agreed.
During the meeting, the Board also provisionally approved the IPC membership of the National Paralympic Committee of Malta, pending ratification by the 2019 IPC General Assembly in Bonn, Germany.
The IPC Governing Board will next meet in January 2019.