News & Blog
London 2012 Wrestling
Posted on December 14, 2011 , by charley
Over the past couple of days an exhibition has been held in London to showcase some of the sports that will be appearing in the summer games in London next year. One of these sports was wrestling, which was exhibited by wrestling matches over the two day event at the ExCeL arena in London. But it seemed like there a little bit of bad press from the Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles (FILA) president Raphael Martinetti.
The event that was being held in London has some of the best wrestling athletes and prospects in the game, proving the point of why wrestling should be in the Olympics. But Martinetti wasn’t happy with that fact that wrestling officials hadn’t been invited to other exhibitions of different sports that will be appearing in the summer games. He mentioned that what the London 2012 Olympics are doing to the legacy of wrestling was ‘totally stupid.’
He then went on to discuss and criticise British Wrestling, complaining that 5 of their team members who have qualified for the Olympic Games are waiting for British citizenship.
"Athletes have come from Ukraine and other countries, but this leaves no legacy from the Games," said Martinetti. “In other sports in Britain you have athletes from Scotland and Wales. Why are athletes from there not taking part in the team? I think it's no good for the country. If they don't have British passports by May, we say bye-bye." The FILA President was also critical of the lack of physical legacy for the sport in Britain after 2012, attacking the decision by London 2012 to hire equipment for the Games on a temporary basis. "After the Games I hoped there would be a legacy," said Martinetti.
"But, for example, there are 25 wrestling mats to be used, and according to the contract that London 2012 has with the company that sent the mats, after the Games these wrestling mats go back to France with the company. I think that is totally stupid. If you have 25 wrestling mats, for the legacy the mats should stay in the country. In every country that organises the Games, generally the mats go to that country. These mats should be distributed to the clubs." Martinetti said.
It seems that not many people are happy with the London 2012 decisions, the only thing that matters are the effects of wrestling in the UK after the games have finished. If there is a sudden boost in the sport and more people getting involved in it, that means that the Olympic games were productive in promoting the sport or Wrestling in Great Britain.