Fund is part of reinstatement effort


LONDON -- Softball took its campaign for Olympic reinstatement to Africa, pledging $100,000 to help develop the sport among youth on the continent.

International Softball Federation president Don Porter announced the development fund Thursday at a softball forum in Banjul, Gambia.

Porter says the popularity of softball is growing in Africa at a tremendous rate. The sport will be on the program of the All-Africa Games in 2011.

Softball, which debuted at the 1996 Atlanta Games, was voted off the program, along with baseball, for the 2012 London Olympics.

Softball is competing with baseball, rugby, roller sports, squash, karate and golf for two openings on the 2016 Olympic program. A decision will be made in October.