IOC drops wrestling from 2020 Olympics

February 12, 2013 - 7:31 AM
IOC Meetings

FILE - In this Monday, Aug. 6, 2012 file photo Keitani Graham of Micronesia competes against Charles Edward Betts of the United States, right, during the 84-kg Greco-Roman wrestling competition at the 2012 Summer Olympics, in London. An official familiar with the decision says IOC leaders have dropped wrestling from the program for the 2020 Olympics. In a surprise decision Tuesday Feb. 12, 2013, the official tells The Associated Press that the IOC executive board decided to retain modern pentathlon and remove wrestling instead. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File)

LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — IOC leaders have dropped wrestling for the 2020 Games in a surprise decision to scrap one of the oldest sports on the Olympic program.

The IOC executive board decided Tuesday to retain modern pentathlon — the event considered most at risk — and remove wrestling instead from its list of core sports.

The decision, announced by the IOC, was first reported by The Associated Press.

The IOC board acted after reviewing the 26 sports on the current Olympic program. Eliminating one sport allows the International Olympic Committee to add a new sport to the program later this year.

Wrestling, which combines freestyle and Greco-Roman events, goes back to the inaugural modern Olympics in Athens in 1896.