Greece’s wrestling federation on Wednesday slammed a decision by the International Olympic Committee to cut the ancient sport from the Olympics.
“The gentlemen of the IOC have decided the kill the Olympic spirit,” said the President of the Greek Wrestling Federation, Kostas Thanos on Greek state television.
“The leadership of the IOC have so little to do with the Olympic spirit that they do not even know that wrestling is mentioned in their own Olympic anthem in the second verse ... when running, wrestling and throwing,” said Thanos.
“If wrestling is abolished then they should also do away with the Olympic rings or even the name Olympic Games and instead rename the event — Business Games,” he added.
The vote by the IOC’s executive board on Tuesday to cut the sport from the 2020 Games has stunned wrestlers around the world.
Wrestling will still be included at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro.
The IOC executive board was meeting to review the 26 sports on its summer programme in order to cut one of them so it could add one later this year. It decided to keep modern pentathlon, which consists of fencing, horse riding, swimming, running and shooting and cancel wrestling.