27 Feb 2013

Japan launches petition site to lobby for wrestling

12:03 pm on 27 February 2013

The Japan Wrestling Federation has launched an online petition site seeking 100,000 signatures to help the sport remain an Olympic discipline.

The International Olympic Committee's executive board made a surprise recommendation this month to drop the sport from the 2020 Games, leaving wrestling to fight with seven other disciplines for one vacant spot when the board meets in May.

The Japanese federation plans to submit the signatures from the "Save Olympic Wrestling" site to the IOC before the May meeting.

India, which has won four Olympic wrestling medals, has also sought the backing of other countries where the sport is popular in a bid to help retain its Games status.

The Bulgarian wrestling federation president Valentin Yordanov sent back his Olympic gold medal from the 1996 Atlanta Games last week in protest.