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India will make it to 2020 Olympic Games: Wrestling Federation of India
Raj Singh, secretary general, Wrestling Federation of India, was shocked when he heard wrestling has been dropped from 2020 Olympic Games. He said, 'I was shocked, but we are aware of the reality about the sport - wrestling will be included in the 2020 Olympics list. I am 100 percent sure.'

During last 2012 London Olympics, a total of 26 sports were included. The upcoming 2020 Olympics is going to witness 28, and the 2016 Olympics will witness 27. Wrestling has been removed from the 2020 list. This has surprised many people as it was expected modern pentathlon will be removed from the list, but that wasn’t to be.

As a result, wrestling has been included in a list of other sports such as baseball/softball, karate, sport climbing, squash, wakeboarding and wushu. Among these sports, only one sport is going to make it for the 2020 Olympics. Some may not have heard about these sports also. The final decision will be announced on September.

“Wrestling has been an ancient game. Dropping the sport from Olympics is not a good thing,” said Binod Chandra Das, Vice President, Wrestling Federation of India. Ever since the first Olympic Games took place in Greece in 1896, wrestling has been an integral part. The Olympics Games has seen the number of sports increase ever since the Olympics has come into existence.

Mr. Das raised a very logical question. “Why did they not remove some other new sports that have come into being, instead of the old one?” Some may claim that wrestling has lost its popularity over the years, but that is something, which Mr Raj does not agree with. He said, “There are 90 countries whose wrestlers are involved in wrestling. So, it is a popular sport.”

But, if somehow wrestling does not make it to 2020 Olympics, it could be a disaster for India. “The exclusion of wrestling is not going to be a good thing for India, as the nation expects medals from wrestlers. We have won medals in wrestling as well in the recent past,” Mr. Raj said, adding, “The Indian government and the Indian Olympic Association needs to put pressure on the International Olympic Committee to include wrestling in the 2020 Olympics.”

But, there is a big hope among Indians as well as International Federations that the sport will be there in 2020 Olympics. Mr. Raj gives a logical reason for it, as he said that the host nation for the 2020 Olympics has not been decided, but three countries who have been shortlisted are Japan (Tokyo), Spain (Madrid) and Turkey (Istanbul) who are expected to support wrestling's inclusion, especially Turkey, who have produced good wrestlers.

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