Two wrestling contestants at the Australian Youth Olympic Festival on January 20, 2013 (Photo: Getty)
For a while there, it looked like the next couple of Summer Olympics would be missing one of the Games' oldest sports, but the IOC has announced it's going to keep the Olympics Greek and bring back wrestling. Back in February, wrestling was dropped from the Olympic program by the 15-person International Olympic Committee (IOC) Executive Board.
But of course the sport wouldn't go down without a fight (ahem). On Saturday, the IOC announced that Tokyo will host the 2020 Summer Olympics. The next day, IOC members voted on a shortlist of three sports that were up for possible reinstatement.
Wrestling is very popular in Japan, and it only took one round of voting for the IOC members to decide that it would come back at the 2020 Games. The sport, one of a few to be played at both the ancient and modern Olympics, received 49 of the 95 available votes. Baseball/softball and squash were the other two contenders, getting 24 and 22 votes respectively.
Members of the International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles (Fila) who were present at the announcement cheered the decision. BBC Sport reports that sweeping reforms were made to the sport after wrestling was dropped in February, and Fila president Nenad Lalovic says the IOC will not regret its decision to bring it back.
"With this vote, you have shown that the steps we have taken to improve our sport have made a difference," he said. "I assure each of you that our modernization will not stop now. We will continue to strive to be the best partner to the Olympic Movement that we can be."