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Tribune News Network
Padel has been recognised by the Olympic Council of Asia (‘OCA’) – a phenomenal milestone for the sport to feature in future Asian Games.
The International Padel Federation (‘FIP’) and OCA are collaborating to assess whether padel can be a part of the Asian Games at the soonest through the establishment of a dedicated OCA Task Force to advance steps for inclusion.
The collaboration is also set to explore further growth and development opportunities – at both professional and amateur levels – across the Asia region. The OCA have said that the Asian Games is founded on the Olympic values of excellence, friendship, and respect; and it is encouraged to see that the sport of padel is being developed by FIP founded on those same values.
The establishment of a Task Force will therefore also support the efforts of FIP to continue the process of being recognised by the International Olympic Committee.
The ambition of FIP and professional players, represented by the Professional Padel Association, is ultimately to compete in the Olympic Games by 2032.
The announcement by the OCA represents the recognition by the international, independent authority of sport in Asia of the immense prospects and potential of padel as a sport. Under the leadership and governance of FIP, the only official regulatory body committed to the growth of the sport, the OCA has for the first time recognised the rapid growth of padel around the world, noting the 25 million active players participating in padel across 110 countries, with near-equal gender participation. This number will only continue to grow as the sport is showcased in events such as the Asian Games.
In April, the FIP welcomed 14 new National Federations as new members of FIP, at its annual General Assembly in Rome. This expansion included five countries from the Middle East and North Africa region - Bahrain, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, and Saudi Arabia - meaning 65 National Federations are now represented within FIP worldwide, marking the continued expansion, reach, and influence of padel globally.
Luigi Carraro, President of FIP, said: “It is no exaggeration to say that this news represents a truly momentous and defining moment for the development of our sport, across both the Asia region and also globally. We very much look forward to partnering with The Olympic Council of Asia to take the sport to new professional and amateur heights, while growing padel – and promoting active lives and good health – across the Asia region.”
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