Sunday, November 30, 2008
Paintball in the Olympics? No, its the World Games 2009
This topic has already been discussed over and over and over again...its almost close to beating the dead horse. But somehow, this question of whether paintball will ever make it to the Olympics always linger at the back of our mind. As a paintballer, it is my wildest dream to see paintball being featured as one of the sporting event in the Olympics...hey, as one of the most popular played games in the US, paintball surely deserve some standing in the international scene. So why isn't paintball an Olympic event? Here's why:
To qualify as an Olympic event, you will need to have the support of many, many, many countries, 75 countries to be exact. Meaning, you will need to have at least 75 countries playing the game, not only that, these countries will need to have a sound paintball association under the close monitor of their respective sports council in the promotion of the game to the community. Community games in the case, refers to properly run tournaments, games for all levels and age group. You will also need to have a national body from the respective countries coming together to form tournaments played by different countries. These national bodies will have to be recognized and pledged to the even bigger body, the world body who dictates the development of the sport. To illustrate my point, we will use soccer in Singapore. There is our local soccer league, the S-league who is supported by the Football Assocation of Singapore, FAS, who then selects a national team from the players from the S-league. And call them the national representative. FAS is affliated to Asia Football Confederation (AFC) who is recognized by the Asia countries as the overall body who is developing soccer in Asia. AFC is the affiliated to FIFA which is the world governing body, which is why we have the World Cup. Lots of ranks, lots of associations, lots of players, lots of support. Paintball? I am not trying to be mean and I love the game, I am a full time paintball promoter...but HAHA. So that's how far we are. To put this idea across, maybe not in my lifetime. Bowling is not an Olympic sport....so where do we stand? I don't know.
So where do we go from here? Many people classified paintball as an extreme sport. So is paintball an extreme sport? Yes, its extreme to some extend...(sounds funny, I know)...its fast, its aggressive, its everything you need to know about being extreme...but is it an extreme sport? No...why? because extreme sports are all participated by individual....see? Biking, skateboarding, blading, motorcross....so we are team work, communication, hmmmm...oh..team vs individual. So we are not so extreme afterall. I would like to see paintball being an extreme team sport....maybe not in the East...but if Malaysia is organizing another round of ESPN Extreme Sport Event...please let paintball in. You are the closest that we can get.
So no more Olympics, no more Extreme Games...so where is paintball going? Ever heard of the World Games? The World Games is a sport event that has all the sport that Olympics doesnt. So is it still recognized by any international body? You bet...the next World Games will be in Taiwan, Kao Hsiung in 2009. The bad news, paintball is not one of the selected sport. The good news, paintball could be selected to be a demonstration sport in World Games 2009. In order for that to happen, paintball teams from around the region are invited to Taiwan by the Kao Hsiung organizing committee to showcase paintball as a possible demonstration game during the World Games from 12 - 14 Dec 2008. Yes, Singapore is included. Red Sevens, Singapore First Paintball Team is invited by our Taiwan partners to be part of this revolutionary move for paintball. This could well change how paintball is perceive in the World!!! Backed by Ulrich, the Head Referee from the Millenium Series and Junaidi, the Head Referee for the Asia World Cup 2006, 2007 and 2008. This event is a significant event. Very significant...
Paintball in the Olympics? I see the light...