2020 Hindsight: Wrestling Will Return To Olympics For Tokyo Games
So, Hide-And-Seek and wrestling in the 2020 Olympics? Making my reservations now.
After being ignominiously dumped for the Rio Games in 2016, wrestling has made a triumphant comeback in voting today for the 2020 Tokyo Games. The sport of the ancient Greeks defeated baseball, softball and squash for a berth.
Yeah, suck it, squash!
“Wrestling has shown great passion and resilience in the last few months,” IOC president Jacques Rogge said. “They have taken a number of steps to modernize and improve their sport.”
In its presentation, wrestling was quick to stake its position as a sport of the future, not the ancient past. “Wrestling is new in virtually every way,” said Jim Scherr, a former wrestler and ex-CEO of the U.S. Olympic Committee.
Wrestling purists, if there are such people, are probably not happy with the changes. Basically they involve more points for offense: and rewarding aggressive moves to cut down on clinches.
As for the rest of the changes, they were administrative.
After wrestling was unexpectedly axed from the program in February, the international governing body ( FILA) made significant changes. It elected a new president, included more women in decision-making roles and adopted rule changes to make the sport easier to understand.
That last part makes little sense, because as it is I have no idea what anyone is doing in most of the scoring events. Tell me that gymnastics is easy to understand.
Anyway, tomorrow my mailman will be greeted with an armdrag transitioning to a rolling chicken wing. But it will be a gentle rolling chicken wing, filled with joy.