2020 Olympic golf club votes to amend membership policy on women

The Kasumigaseki Country Club in Saitama Prefecture, north of Tokyo, agreed to allow women members after pressure from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) AFP

TOKYO —

The private golf club picked to host golf at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics decided on Monday to lift its controversial ban on full female membership after pressure from the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

The Kasumigaseki Country Club in Saitama Prefecture agreed to allow women members at an extraordinary board meeting on Monday, JiJi Press said.

Immediate comment from the club was not available, but the decision was welcomed by organisers of the Tokyo Games.

It came after IOC chief Thomas Bach on Friday reiterated his threat to take the golf event elsewhere, saying he was hopeful the club would opt for “non-discrimination”.

Tokyo Gov Yuriko Koike had also complained about the ban, saying she felt “extreme discomfort” to see women with no right to be full members in the 21st century.

The club has women on its roster but they are not allowed to become full members and cannot play on certain Sundays—restrictions that do not apply to male members.

Tokyo 2020 chief Yoshiro Mori welcomed the club’s decision, saying it amended the policy “in keeping with the spirit of the Olympic Charter.”

“I truly appreciate the numerous efforts that the club’s senior leaderships and all the club members have made so far to meet the requirements for hosting Olympic competitions,” Mori said in a statement.

The club’s chairman told local media earlier this month he was “flummoxed” by the row, prompting further criticism.

The decision also came after Scotland’s prestigious Muirfield club voted to allow women members last week, ditching a rule which had stood for 273 years.

© 2017 AFP

  • 1

    Dango bong

    they will just change it back after the olympics are gone

  • 3

    RealityofFake

    @dango bong, I was thinking the exact same thing. I was searching for the part in the article where they say the change is only in effect in the year 2020.

  • 0

    itsonlyrocknroll

    The resentful tone, so begrudgingly choked out in context and use. Through gritted dentures referring to a deferred entitlement use of term allow. Allow could well be attached to a length of elastic. Amend having a magicians, now you see it now you don't, abracadabra it gone quality.

    The club’s “flummoxed” chairman's amendment “in keeping with the spirit of the Olympic Charter.” could well expire and vanish into thin air after an appropriate period, following the final ceremony as the occasion fades out of the nations memory.

    If The Kasumigaseki Country Club truly wished to enter into the spirit of the Olympic charter, the Clubs Chairman could have invited Tokyo Gov Yuriko Koike for a round next Sunday, the worlds media invited to tag along to record the event for historic perspective.

  • 0

    GW

    Boy oh boy that seems genuine.........NOT!

  • 1

    yankinhokkaido

    But will they go back to being men-only after the Olympics? That's the question.

  • 0

    itsonlyrocknroll

    The Kasumigaseki Country Club, as a private club, was never at any time forced or coerced into changing their membership policy, it was a simple choice, fully embrace the spirit of the Olympic Charter or forfeit hosting Golf in 2020.

    Mori in many respects, manages make a PR mountain out of a molehill.....................

    “I truly appreciate the numerous efforts that the club’s senior leaderships and all the club members have made so far to meet the requirements for hosting Olympic competitions,” Mori said in a statement.......How much of an effort is it?

  • 0

    smithinjapan

    Guaranteed that after substantial back-patting between the old boys up to, during, and just after the Olympics, the club will return to its male-only full membership policy.

  • 0

    wtfjapan

    Id bet 100,000yen that they'll just change back or water it down after the Olympics, Japan always some BS clause or hidden rule to protect peoples pride or self-importance, cloaked in the name of culture. Itd actually funny if it wasn't so pathetic

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