IPC Governing Board to discuss Tokyo 2020 Paralympic sports programme

The International Paralympic Committee (IPC) Governing Board will meet in Berlin, Germany, on Tuesday (7 October) to discuss which sports should be included in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games.

Twenty-four sports are in the running for 2020 including the 22 sports that will feature at Rio 2016 together with para-badminton and para-taekwondo, two new sports that progressed following the initial application process.

A maximum of 23 sports can be included in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic sports programme and each sport had until 28 July to submit their application to IPC. Since then the IPC management team has undertaken a rigorous assessment of all applications received.

On Tuesday, the IPC Governing Board will review all the submitted applications and the management team's recommendations, and will then decide which sports should definitely be included in six years' time.

Those sports not confirmed on Tuesday will be asked to present additional information to the IPC addressing the issues identified in their applications.

The IPC Governing Board will then make a final decision on the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic sports programme early next year when it meets in Abu Dhabi, UAE, between 30 January and 1 February.

Xavier Gonzalez, the IPC's Chief Executive Officer, said: "Our aim from the start has been to make this as open and transparent a process as possible. We want to ensure that the final Tokyo 2020 sports programme is fresh and features the best sports possible.

"We can have up to 23 sports in Tokyo and, in consultation with the IOC, have agreed to finalise the sports programme and the total number of athletes in the New Year.

"Although some of the sports will be rubber stamped for inclusion on Tuesday, the final list of sports will not be decided until the next IPC Governing Board meeting in late January.

"This gives an opportunity for those sports we have identified some issues with during the review process to present additional information for consideration by the IPC Governing Board."

The 22 sports currently on the summer Games programme are: athletics, archery, boccia, para-canoe, cycling, equestrian, football 5-a-side, football 7-a-side, goalball, judo, powerlifting, rowing, sailing, shooting, sitting volleyball, swimming, table tennis, para-triathlon, wheelchair basketball, wheelchair fencing, wheelchair rugby and wheelchair tennis. The two latest additions are para-canoe and para-triathlon, and both will make their Games debut at the Rio 2016 Paralympics.

Since the first Paralympic Games in Rome, Italy, in 1960, the Paralympic Games have continued to grow in size and stature. The first Games featured 400 athletes from 23 countries competing in eight sports - archery, athletics, dartchery, snooker, swimming, table tennis, wheelchair fencing and wheelchair basketball.

At London 2012, the Games involved a record 4,237 athletes from 164 countries who took part in 503 medal events across 20 sports. A cumulated global audience of 3.8 billion watched the Games, whilst 2.78 million tickets were sold, making the Paralympics the third-biggest sporting event in the world behind the Olympics and FIFA World Cup.

In 2010, para-badminton, intellectually impaired basketball, para-golf, powerchair football and para-taekwondo all applied to be part of the Rio 2016 Paralympic sports programme but were unsuccessful with the Governing Board instead choosing applications from para-canoe and para-triathlon.

The Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games will be held from 25 August - 6 September 2020.