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Kung fu fights golf for 2008 Olympic spot
Updated: 2004-11-26 17:08

Martial arts are sparring with golf for a place at the 2008 Beijing Olympics after both were nominated as potential demonstration events.

Shaolin monks perform for tourists at the famous Shaolin Monestary in central China's Henan province. [AFP]

"Golf's inclusion makes sense as the game is becoming increasingly popular in China with about 200 courses and 200 more under construction," the Xinhua news agency quoted Cui Zhiqiang, secretary general of the China Golf Association, as saying on Friday.

There were more than 500,000 regular golfers in China, Xinhua said.

"But the inclusion of golf at the 2008 Beijing Olympics has run into opposition in the form of a group of supporters lobbying for wushu, the famous Chinese martial art," Cui said.

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has already turned down China's application to make wushu a medal sport in 2008.

Both sports are relative long shots, even in demonstration, as an existing event would have to be dropped to make way.

The IOC is expected to make a decision by June 2005.

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