2020 Tokyo Olympics: USA Softball Star Monica Abbott Calls for Sport to Be Added on Permanent Basis

by Joe Rutland

Team USA softball player Monica Abbott is asking for the sport to be added as a permanent one after their finish at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Abbott made her comments in an Associated Press story from Washington Newsday. She wants the International Olympic Committee to take action on this matter.

Abbott prefaced her comments by saying women’s softball is a “global sport.”

“I challenge the International Olympic Committee to regularly include softball as a women’s sport on the Olympic program,” Abbott, who saw her team lose to Japan 2-0 in the gold-medal game, said.

2020 Tokyo Olympics Marked Last Time Softball Will Be In Games Until 2028

“It has been demonstrated that we attract viewers and that we are engaged on social media,” she said. “It’s a global sport. It’s done extremely well on several continents and in different parts of the world, and I think it’s really tough to maintain that momentum and involvement for this sport to expand internationally when you’re in an Olympics and then out of an Olympics, when you’re in one and then out of one.”

The 2020 Tokyo Olympics included the sport, but it will not be a part of any Summer Olympics until 2028.

Team USA, though, also had to deal with simply coming away with a silver medal. They entered the final contest with a 5-0 record in play, even beating Japan 2-1 to get to the gold medal game.

But winning gold was not to be for the Americans on Tuesday at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Cat Osterman, who previously won Olympic gold with Team USA, probably played in her last Olympics. She took a bit before she commented on the American team’s loss to Japan.

“It stings,” Osterman said two hours after the loss. “I’ve never been on a squad that fought so hard.”

Team USA will now have to wait until 2028 to get their revenge in the Olympic competition.

Ratings for the Games Were Up On Streaming, Still Down on NBC

One of the biggest stories that are taking place during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics is around TV ratings. That’s especially true when looking at NBC’s network ratings and streaming numbers.

This time, the Peacock streaming service has a 72 percent increase in viewership over the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio.

But the network’s overall viewership numbers are at a 33-year low.

According to Front Office Sports, “Including streaming, NBC’s Olympics audience dropped 36% to 17 million viewers.” 

But in 2016, the Rio Summer Olympics’ Opening Ceremony held an audience of 26.5 million people. Then in 2012, London’s Opening Ceremony attracted 40.7 million viewers.

It remains to be seen whether the network numbers will improve over the next few days.