Wresting has been reinstated as an Olympic sport for the 2020 and 2024 Games as voted for by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) members ahead of baseball/softball and squash.
The IOC members sitting in Buenos Aires, Argentina, conducted a secret electronic ballot on the issue on Sunday and wrestling earned a majority of 49 votes, while a combined baseball/softball bid received 24 votes and squash 22.
Wrestling, which combines freestyle and Greco-Roman events, was included in the inaugural modern Olympics in Athens in 1896 and has take part in every Games since, except in Paris in 1900.
Following the IOC’s assessment of all the 26 sports which took part at the London 2012 Games in June, the sport was due to end its participation at the 2016 Rio Olympic.
However, there has been a number of reforms made to the sport, which featured 344 athletes competing in 11 medal events at the London Games last year, following its exclusion, including overhauling its rules, administration, gender equality and operation.
And the IOC had warned the International federation of Associated Wrestling Styles (Fila) last week over breaching of bid rules but that has seem not to have any counter effect on its success.
Earlier this year, the president of the Nigeria Wrestling Federation (NWF), one of the five panelists selected for the SportsAccord Conference in St Petersburg Russia, where they addressed the IOC Executive Board on the need to reinstate wrestling in the Olympics, had expressed optimism on the sport’s bid.
The announcement has added smiles to the faces of the members of Fila as president, Nenad Lalovic, said: “With this vote, you have shown that the steps we have taken to improve our sport have made a difference.
“I assure each of you that our modernisation will not stop now. We will continue to strive to be the best partner to the Olympic Movement that we can be.”