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Newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

Thu 22 July 2021 | 10:30

What sports discipline are you most excited to see in the Tokyo Olympics this summer? Who do you think will win the gold medal in any of the five new sports to debut at 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo? Follow us below as we take a look at all the 5 new Olympic sports at the upcoming games in Tokyo.

With all the buzz and excitement around Euro 2020 and Copa America fading away a little more each day, people and athletes from all around the world are readying themselves for the 2020-21 Tokyo Olympics as we enter a new era of sports with new additions to the global games. The summer of 2020 was going to be one memorable summer for everyone, but we all got to spend it in lockdown due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

That is why both Euro 2020 and the 2020 Olympics were postponed for a year. Now that we have finally bought our tickets to Japan and the global tournaments are set to take place, many of you would surely want to know about everything that has changed about the competitions and learn about the

5 new sports in the Tokyo summer Olympics

.

Surely the athletes who are active in these five disciplines would be thankful that the IOC shifter from a “sport-based” approach to an “event-based” program in the Olympics as it made the addition of such sports possible in the new decade. Eight sports were initially proposed and were put to a vote years before the start of the 2020 Olympics.

The original eight consisted of bowling, baseball/softball, sport climbing, roller sports, squash, wushu and surfing. In the end, however, only five were included on the list of

newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

. The list consisted of baseball/softball, karate, sport climbing, surfing and skateboarding. Of course the future of these 5 new sports in the Tokyo summer Olympics is unclear as they are only set feature at this particular tournament alone. Read on as we take a look at each sport and provide details about the scheduled games and introduce the ones to watch.

Five new sports to debut at 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo

Here is everything you need to know about the new sports added to the Olympics.

Baseball

As one of the

newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

, baseball is actually no stranger to the Olympics as it is not the first time the sport is going to feature in the global event. It was in fact first introduced as an exhibition event way back in the 80s, later becoming an official medal event at the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. After appearing in 5 Olympics, however, it was removed from the program after the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

Baseball is one of the most famous and beloved sports in the world, especially in countries such as the United States and this year’s hosts Japan, whose Nippon Professional League is believed to be on par with United States’ Major Baseball League. Strangely enough, the event will be held as a male-only program, with six nations – Japan, USA, Mexico, South Korea, the Dominican Republic and Israel- set to battle it out in a round-robin competition format before qualifying for the knockout stages.

From amongst all the six nations present in the tournament, Japan and USA are the obvious choices for many, as the two are literally the best in the world, with Japan being the champions of the 2019 Premier12 tournament, which consisted of the 12 best nations in baseball. As one of the 5 new Olympic sports at the upcoming games in Tokyo, all its games have been scheduled as detailed below.

Games Schedule

  • Group Stage

Wednesday, 28 July

Dominican Republic vs. Japan (Group A) - 1:00pm (AEST)

Thursday, 29 July

Israel vs. South Korea (Group B) - 8:00pm (AEST)

Friday, 30 July

Mexico vs. Dominican Republic (Group A) - 1:00pm (AEST) USA vs. Israel (Group B) - 8:00pm

Saturday, 31 July

Japan vs. Mexico (Group A) - 1:00pm (AEST) - South Korea vs. USA (Group B) - 8:00pm

  • Knockout Stage

Sunday, 1 August

Game 7: Group A third place vs. Group B second place - 1:00pm (AEST)

Game 8: Group A second place vs. Group B second place - 8:00pm

Monday, 2 August

Game 9: Game 7 winner vs. Game 8 winner - 1:00pm (AEST)

Game 10: Group A first place vs. Group B first place - 8:00pm

Tuesday, 3 August

Game 11: Game 8 loser vs. Game 9 loser - 8:00pm (AEST)

Wednesday, 4 August

Game 12: Game 11 winner vs. Game 10 loser - 1:00pm (AEST)

Semifinal 1: Game 9 winner vs. Game 10 winner - 8:00pm

Thursday, 5 August

Semifinal 2: Game 12 winner vs. Game 13 loser - 8:00pm (AEST)

Saturday, 7 August

Bronze Medal Game: Semifinal 1 loser vs. Semifinal 2 loser - 1:00pm (AEST)

Gold Medal Game: Semifinal 1 winner vs. Semifinal 2 winner - 8:00pm

Softball

While technically a little different from baseball, softball is considered to be in the same category in the

newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

. Of course one major difference is in its history. Softball was first introduced into the Olympics back in 1996, four years after the initial introduction of baseball in 1992. Both sports, however, were removed from the sporting program in 2008. While baseball is scheduled to be an all-male competition, softball is scheduled to be a female-only event, consisting of six national teams.

The teams include the hosts Japan, Australia, Italy, Mexico, Canada and the United States, who will be competing in a similar round-robin format. One particular difference between the formats, however, is the fact that the two top teams will go on to play in a final playoff instead of the event having a knockout stage. Surely all eyes will be on Team USA and Australia, as the two nations are the favorites to compete in the final playoffs for the gold medal.

Games Schedule

  • Group Stage

Wednesday, 21 July

Australia vs Japan - 10:00am (AEST)

Italy vs. USA - 1:00pm

Mexico vs. Canada - 4:00pm

Thursday, 22 July

USA vs Canada - 10:00am (AEST)

Mexico vs. Japan - 1:00pm

Italy vs. Australia - 4:00pm

Saturday, 24 July

Australia vs. Canada - 11:00am (AEST)

USA vs Mexico - 3:30pm

Japan vs. Italy - 9:00pm

Sunday, 25 July

Australia vs. USA - 11:00am (AEST)

Canada vs. Japan - 3:30pm

Italy vs. Mexico - 9:00pm

Monday 26 July

Japan vs. USA - 11:00am (AEST)

Canada vs. Italy - 3:30pm

Mexico vs. Australia - 9:00pm

  • Final Playoffs

Tuesday, 27 July

Bronze medal game - 2:00pm (AEST)

Gold medal game - 9:00pm

Skateboarding

Tony Hawk will without a doubt be proud to see the sport that he pioneered for so many years will finally feature in a global event such as the Olympics. Skateboarding is another one of the

five new sports to debut at 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo

, which unlike baseball and softball, will be appearing in the event for the very first time in history.

While the future of previous sports are unsure, Skateboarding has already been approved to feature in the 2024 Paris Olympics as well. The format of such a new sport will follow the formats traditionally used in the tournaments of the discipline. Skateboarding will include two separate formats, namely park and street.

The Park format will make use of a dome-shaped bowl, in which skaters will do their best to execute tricks while maintaining their flow. They will be scored on their ability to do the two mentioned skills. In the Street format, however, the courses will feature stairs, rails and other “street” obstacles and the aim will be the same as the previous section. As one of the newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Skateboarding will feature 80 contestants from 18 different nations, who will be competing in two groups of men and women across the two formats.

There are two skateboarders who will probably attract the most attention during the games. The first one is 13-year-old Sky Brown, who not only is the 2019 World Championships bronze medal winner, but also is Great Britain’s youngest ever summer Olympics athlete. The second athlete is Nyjah Houston, who is currently the world’s highest-paid skateboarder and will be competing in the men’s section for the United States.

Games Schedule

Sunday, 25 July 10:00am (AEST)

Men’s Street Preliminary Heats

Men’s Street Final

Men’s Street Victory Ceremony

Monday, 26 July 10:00am

Women’s Street Preliminary Heats

Women’s Street Final

Women’s Street Victory Ceremony

Wednesday, 4 August 10:00am

Women’s Park Preliminary Heats

Women’s Park Final

Women’s Park Victory Ceremony

Thursday, 5 August 10:00am

Men’s Park Prelims Heats

Men’s Park Final

Men’s Park Victory Ceremony

Surfing

If you thought the introduction of Skateboarding as one of the

5 new Olympic sports at the upcoming games in Tokyo

was strange enough, then think again as Surfing is also going to feature in this year’s summer Olympics. The event will take place at the Tsurigasaki Beach in Ichinomiya. While other events are easily scheduled and already have a fixed date, Surfing is too much dependent on the weather conditions and wave forecasts, which is why it might take some time for the competition to reach its end.

20 men and 20 women will be competing in their own respective categories in a preliminary-round heats format, which will be followed by a head-to-head knockout stage. The contestants will be from 20 different countries, which include Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, France, Germany, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Japan, Morocco, New Zealand, Peru, Portugal, South Africa and the United States.

If you are interested in watching the surfing events, the sport which is one of the 5 new sports in the Tokyo summer Olympics, then you might want to keep an eye on Australia’s Julian Wilson and Owen Wright in the men’s squad and Stephanie Gilmore from the nation’s women’s team. USA’s WSL stars Kolohe Andino and John John Florence will also be featuring in the Tokyo Olympics.

Games Schedule

As previously mentioned, the schedule for this discipline is quite fluid and flexible and will be dependent on the weather conditions and the wave forecasts. Of course the main predicted timeline for the event is believed to be between 24-31 July.

Sport Climbing

Another event on the list of newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics is sport climbing, which includes three different disciplines and will feature as a single combined event rather than three different items. The three disciplines consist of speed, bouldering and lead. The first event is “speed”, during which climbers will compete in pairs to climb a 15-meter-high wall on identical routes as fast as they can.

The “bouldering” item will have climbers navigate different routes in the best way they can. The climbers with the fewest attempts will earn the highest points. Of course it will not be easy at all as the routes will be across 4.5 meter-high boulder with steep overhangs. Obviously we did not expect one of the newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to be easy. The next item is “lead climbing”, in which climbers will have to climb as high as they can on a 15-meter wall in six minutes.  

As one of the newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, Sport Climbing will feature 40 climbers in total, with men and women’s groups each including 20 athletes. These climbers will be from nations such as Australia, Austria, Canada, China, Czech Republic France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Poland, Russian Olympic Committee, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, and the United States. Surely six-time world champions Janja Ganrnbret from Slovenia will catch the attention of the world in the women’s group, with the climber being the favorite to win the gold medal for her nation.

Games Schedule

Tuesday, 3 August

Men's combined, speed qualification - 6:00pm (AEST)

Men's combined, bouldering qualification - 7:00pm

Men's combined, lead qualification - 10:10pm

Wednesday, 4 August

Women's combined, speed qualification - 6:00pm (AEST)

Women's combined, bouldering qualification - 7:00pm

Women's combined, lead qualification - 10:10pm

Thursday, 5 August

Men's combined, speed final - 6:30pm (AEST)

Men's combined, bouldering final - 7:30pm

Men's combined, lead final - 10:10pm

Friday, 6 August

Women's combined, speed final - 6:30pm (AEST)

Women's combined, bouldering final - 7:30pm

Women's combined, lead final - 10:10pm

Karate

The list of newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics also includes Karate. Honestly, we are as surprised as you are about the fact that Karate has only just been introduced into the Olympics. Obviously, with Japan hosting the Summer Olympics this year, many were awaiting to see Karate being introduced to the event since the sport was initially born in Japan. The event will take place at Nippon Budokan, where the very first Karate world championship was held in 1970. The martial art sport will consist of two different events – kata and kumite.

In Kata, athletes will be judged based on their technique and form, while in Kumite, athletes will go head-to-head on a mat. There will be three different weight classes for both the men and women’s teams.

A total of 80 competitors will compete in both disciplines of karate. With Karate being one of newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, all eyes will be on the Spain, Japan, Turkey and China national teams, with Japanese karate star Ryo Kiyuna, a three-time world champion, being the favorite to win the men’s kata gold medal.

Of course Spain will have their own world-class and top-ranked male competitor in the event as well, who is obviously none other than Damian Quintero. Spain will also have Sandra Sanchez, the six-time women’s European champion, in the tournament and are quite hopeful of winning as many medals as they can.

Games Schedule

Thursday, 5 August

Session 1: 10:00 - 15:05 (AEST)

Session 2: 17:00 - 20:50

Friday, 6 August

Session 3: 10:00 – 14:55 (AEST)

Session 4: 17:00 – 21:40

Saturday, 7 August

Session 5: 14:00 – 20:45

These were the newly added sports at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Would you like to see these sports in the Olympics as well? Surely we all hope to see more sports being added to such a global event so that every athlete could gain the recognition they truly deserve.

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