Pétanque decision day on becoming an Olympic sport

Posted Feb 14, 2019

This article states that on 21 February the announcement will be made on whether pétanque will be an Olympic sport at the Paris Olympics in 2024.

They are up against sports including Breakdance, Squash and Water Skiing.

For the lawn bowlers who might be asking why are we not even in the frame for consideration! Direct that to the governing body World Bowls who are the only organisation that can make this happen. World Bowls were at one point aligned to the Pétanque group doing all the work needed and ticking the right boxes to apply for Olympic status. They withdrew from this combined “rolling ball/target bowl” group to do their own thing. Which as far as I can see since then is very little but can see from their minutes they have debated the cost of the fees for membership of the GAISF, this is the umbrella organisation for both Olympic and non-Olympic international sports federations. Surely no debate is needed if you are serious you have to pay whatever the costs of entry are!

My feelings are that World Bowls do not have the drive and desire to make lawn bowls become an Olympic sport. Why? I am at a loss to understand - you can have as many open days for beginners and try bowls days as you want and pick up a few new members to replace some of those lost to the sport. HOWEVER Olympic Lawn Bowls would give bowls the launch platform needed to bring in thousands of new bowlers into clubs by changing the general public perception that it is just an old person’s pastime.