The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has granted the WFDF provisional recognition. This is the first step on a long road to seeing Ultimate in the Olympics, but again raises the question… How can a self-refereed sport remain fair when an Olympic Gold medal is at stake? In a sudden death Olympics Final situation, with a receiver going up for the winning score, and a defender going for the game-saving block, the pass isn’t completed and there is the question of a strip/foul… How can this situation be resolved fairly, and in a way which can be entertaining for the crowds (as that’s necessary for Olympic sports)?
1) SOTG – the players decide between themselves if it was a foul or not. With an Olympic Gold at stake, it’s fair to say their judgement may be somewhat clouded in a close call, and the discussion may take a while leading to a complete anti-climax.
2) Observers – if the players disagree, the observer with the best perspective makes the call. In reality though, if it’s a close call then the observer knows less than the players about what happened.
3) Referees – as above, except no time given for the players to agree or disagree, the referee simply makes a ruling immediately.
4) Video refs – huge expense to get these implemented, also time consuming to get a result, but probably the most accurate / fair outcome. Not bad for the crowd if they can see it on a big screen!
Which, if any of the above, do you think would be best path of resolution?
Here’s the info in full, originally from ukultimate.com.
“WFDF welcomes this recognition to join the Olympic family and we confirm the commitment of the flying disc community to the ideals set out in the Olympic Charter,” stated WFDF President Robert “Nob” Rauch. “Our strong value of “spirit of the game” on the field of play and off of it has always reflected these principles. We thank the IOC Executive Board and administration for their support and encouragement, and our Member Associations, board of directors, and athletes for their enthusiasm and commitment to this process.”
“This recognition by the IOC today is a very important milestone for flying disc sports, and should greatly support our grass roots development programs in countries around the world, opening the door for our members to seek their own National Olympic Committee recognition,” commented Rauch further. “However, this is just the start of a long journey as we look to further develop disc sports and fulfill all the criteria stipulated by the IOC so that one day we will have a product which is equal to the current sports of the Olympic Games in both sports excellence and commercial interest.” WFDF joins 33 other international sports federations that are recognized by the IOC but are not currently a part of the Olympic sports program.
The World Flying Disc Federation (“WFDF”) serves as the international governing body of all flying disc sports. Since WFDF was founded in 1985, the development of the sport has been quite rapid and Ultimate and the other disc disciplines today are some of the fastest growing sports in the world, due to the simplicity of the basic rules, the speed of the game, its self-officiation, and its appeal with youth and across gender lines. WFDF estimates that there are currently 7.5 million active participants globally across the various disciplines, including Ultimate, Beach Ultimate, Disc Golf, Freestyle, Guts and Field Events. WFDF today represents 59 member associations in 56 countries. WFDF was approved as a member of GAISF (now SportAccord) and the International World Games Association in 1995, is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) registered corporation in the State of Colorado, USA, and it is a signatory of the WADA World Anti-Doping code.