PUNE: The Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF) on Friday ended any possibility for shooting sport to make itself a place in the 2022 Birmingham Commonwealth Games programme saying despite rich history of the sport it was the decision of Birmingham organisers, who evaluated all possible scenarios before deciding to exclude it from the 2022 games.
In an open and emotional letter to Shooting Times, the veritable record keepers of the sport of shooting, the CGF Chief Executive Officer David Grevemberg, outlined the situation that led to shooting being kept out of the 2022 Birmingham Games.
Given that shooting has been on the Commonwealth Games programme in all the editions since 1966 expect in 1970 Edinburgh, it was expected that the ISSF, the world governing body for shooting, to convince Birmingham oranisers to find a room for the sport in 2022.
“The status of Shooting as an optional sport was a decision made at the 2015 Commonwealth Games Federation General Assembly, and also reaffirmed in 2016 when the new CGF Constitution was approved. Importantly, these are not decisions taken solely by the Federation, but hugely important decisions voted on by our members in line with our Constitution. It was a decision made by the entire Commonwealth of Nations,” Grevemberg said in his letter.
“Shooting is a thrilling sport with a proud and longstanding heritage at the Commonwealth Games. We understand that there will be disappointment when an optional sport is not chosen,” said Grevemberg.
“Birmingham is a diverse and dynamic city that has proposed an inspiring and inclusive event for 2022, and in record time. We know they considered all optional sports carefully, but a final decision was reached. The CGF has awarded the Games supporting these plans and consequently Shooting will not feature at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.”
Agreeing that it was disappointing to the shooting community and the fans, CGF said it would continue to build strategic partnerships with the ISSF.
The CGF President is likely to meet the ISSF and discuss their future plans and ambitions to continue the development of shooting disciplines throughout the Commonwealth.
While shooting was excluded, the organisers opted for judo, table tennis, wrestling, gymnastics, diving, cycling and 3v3 basketball as the seven optional sports apart from the 10 mandatory ones.
In 2014 Glasgow CWG, India won a total of 17 medals, including four golds. When New Delhi hosted the Games in 2010, India topped the tally in shooting, winning a total of 30 medals.