It’s been a little while since we’ve updated you on the state of wrestling in the 2020 Olympics. While nothing has been decided yet, we’re still on the mat fighting for our lives.
Wrestling was a staple in the ancient Olympics. It was introduced at the 18th Olympiad in 708 BC. It remained a staple in the program for 273 games and became part of the modern Olympics in 1896.
In February, the International Olympic Committee met to vote on excluding wrestling after the 2016 Rio Games. There is one opening left in the 2020 program, which means our treasured sport is fighting against baseball/softball and squash.
Wrestling survived the first round fight in its bid to win reinstatement. Wrestling emerged as the hands-down winner in this vote as the only sport to get eight of the 14 votes. This secured its spot on the list for final voting. The sports that didn’t make the cut were karate, rock climbing, roller sports, wakeboarding and wushu.
The final vote will take place by the 100-member IOC in September in Buenos Aires, Argentina. However, wrestling may not have to be a part of this final vote. There is a preliminary vote that will occur to decide whether the sport should be removed as a core sport. If wrestling survives this vote, it will not have to be a part of the final vote, leaving only squash and baseball to battle for the final position.
The plan for now is to continue fighting for wrestling’s inclusion in the 2020 games. If the sport doesn’t make it, you can bet the fight will continue on to reinstate the sport. We’re wrestlers, we’re passionate, and we don’t give up.
How can you show your support? We've created a special wrestling t-shirt specifically in support of this worth cause.
Learn about The 2020 Vision and find out how you can get involved in keeping the dream alive for our favorite sport.