ICC welcomes Olympic recognition

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/i/icclogo.jpg' class='caption'> ICC has welcomed the decision of the International Olympic Committee to bring cricket into the Olympics after a gap of more than 100 years.

Updated: December 13, 2007 17:40 IST
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The International Cricket Council (ICC) has welcomed the decision of the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) executive board to bring cricket into the Olympics after a gap of more than 100 years.

"This is great news for cricket. The Olympic is instantly recognisable around the world and for cricket to be a part of that again has to be a good thing," Ray Mali, ICC President, said in a statement on Tuesday.

"The ICC and IOC share similar values, such as a spirit of fair play in a competitive but ultimately friendly environment. Cricket - like all sports - should be played hard but fair, and I think the special atmosphere that surrounds the Olympic Games demonstrates all that is good about sport," he said.

The IOC's decision to recognise the ICC and cricket for the first time since the sport featured in the 1900 Paris Olympiad will lead to closer collaboration between the two bodies for the good of sport. It is also expected to enhance cricket's profile in territories where it is a developing sport.

"Our goal has been to become an international federation that is recognised by the IOC, and we are pleased to have achieved this target. We want to play an active role in the Olympic Movement and we will be looking at ways in which we can work with the IOC for the benefit of cricket, sport and society in general," said Mali.

"Cricket last featured in the Olympic Games in 1900. Maybe, one day it will be right for cricket to return to the Olympic programme," he added.

As well as approving the ICC's application for IOC recognition at its meeting in Lausanne, the IOC executive board will also receive a presentation from Lord Condon, the chairman of the ICC's Anti-Corruption and Security Unit, on issues relating to betting in sport.

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