Should wrestling once again be an Olympic sport? Unlikely though it may seem, this is a central question at a meeting of the International Olympic Committee in St Petersburg this week.
It came as a surprise to many when, three months ago, wrestling was removed from the list of core Olympic sports. And opponents of its re-entry argue that if wrestling were reinstated, the plan to allow another new sport in for the 2020 Olympics would be kiboshed. But why should wrestling be singled out to make way for other neophyte pastimes?
Wrestling has a long and distinguished pedigree. It was a sport at the ancient Games. Recent reforms – including bringing competitors into the decision-making process – show a modern mindset. If that isn’t enough to persuade the IOC delegates, perhaps a visit from wrestling’s awkward squad could concentrate minds?