• Source tells The Guardian 'very surprising' if not there
• Confirmation is expected of its inclusion early next year
Olympic Golf is expected to be included in the 2024 Games, allaying fears that it would only stay until Tokyo 2020.
According to a report in The Guardian, a source at the International Olympic Committee said it would be ‘very surprising’ if golf is not there in either Los Angeles, Paris or Budapest – the three potential host cities – with confirmation expected early next year.
The sport was dogged by negative publicity in the build-up to its return to the Olympic fold for the first time in 112 years, with Jason Day, Dustin Johnson, Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy all skipping the event citing health concerns.
Read more -> Zach Johnson 'irritated' by Olympic Golf
Others, including South African duo Charl Schwartzel and Louis Oosthuizen, put their absence down to scheduling, while Aussie Adam Scott’s stance throughout was that winning a medal in Olympic Golf never interested him as it wasn’t something he’d ever aspired to do.
However, a final round duel between gold medallist Justin Rose and Open champion Henrik Stenson in Rio de Janeiro produced excellent crowds and viewing figures and, with Inbee Park (below) winning the women’s gold, the reaction afterwards was the polar opposite to the feeling going into the event.
Read more -> BLOG: 'Too soon to judge Olympic Golf a success'
“The return of Olympic Golf has exceeded all expectations and will surely etch its mark in Olympic folklore forever,” said Gary Player, the South African captain in Brazil, writing in a diary on his official website.
"Hopefully, the IOC will not even remotely consider ever removing it" - Gary Player
“Hopefully, the IOC will not even remotely consider ever removing it from future Olympics. The golf was not only a huge success but also a beautiful spectacle put on by some amazing golfers and watched by thousands of appreciative fans. Long live golf at the Olympics!"
Read more -> David Leadbetter roasts Rio no-shows
Read more -> Twitter reacts to Justin Rose winning Olympic gold
Since the Olympics, Spieth admitted his regret at not going to Rio de Janeiro, while McIlroy said he was proved ‘somewhat wrong’ about the Games.
"I wished I was there" - Jordan Spieth
“I watched it and really enjoyed it,” said Spieth. “It came off tremendously for the game. I enjoyed watching the finish to the Olympics and I wished I was there.
“The potential for regret was going to be there and it certainly was while I was watching, so that’s why I tweeted, ‘I’m looking forward to setting it as a goal to be there in 2020’.”
Olympic Golf's future to be secured
What do you make of the fact that Olympic Golf is likely to be extended to the 2024 Games? Leave your thoughts in the 'Comments' section below.