On Tuesday, in a surprise decision, the International Olympic Committee voted to remove wrestling from the 2020 Olympic Games. It was believed that modern pentathlon was the sport that was going to be eliminated, but instead it was wrestling that got cut.
According to the New York Post, by getting rid of one sport, the IOC now has the ability to add a new sport to the program later this year.
Although it is gone for now, wrestling will join seven other sports in applying for inclusion in 2020. A combined bid from baseball and softball, karate, squash, roller sports, sport climbing, wakeboarding, wushu and now wrestling will be vying for a single opening in 2020.
At last year's London Olympics, wrestling featured 344 athletes competing in 11 medal events in freestyle and seven in Greco-Roman. Wrestling goes back to the inaugural modern Olympics in Athens in 1896.
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Surviving until at least the 2020 games, modern pentathlon combines fencing, horse riding, swimming, running and shooting. The sport's governing body, the UIPM, has been aggressively lobbying to keep the sport in the Olympics. It appears that the effort has worked.
“The Olympic movement always needs history,” UIPM President Klaus Schormann said before the IOC decision. “You cannot just say we look only at the future. You can have a future when you are stable on the basic part of history. We are continuing to develop, to renovate, to be innovative and creative. We are very proud of what we achieved so far and want to deliver this as well for the next generations in 2020.”
Source: (New York Post)