Seven months after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) shockingly decided to drop amateur wrestling from the 2020 Summer Olympic Games, they've embarrassingly decided to reinstate it after a secret ballot was held today to decide upon which "new" sport would be added to the program.
Wrestling comfortably won the balloting, receiving an outright majority of 49 votes over a combined bid of baseball and softball that got 24 votes, and squash with 22.
The positive outcome for the ancient grappling sport was expected after their governing body FILA robustly responded to the criticism it came under when they were expelled from the Games by instituting sweeping reforms that included changing its rules to make it more exciting for viewers, increasing the number of weight classes so there was gender equality and overhauling their administration and operations.
FILA president, Nenad Lalovic, who declared that the day would be the most important one in the 3,000-year history of the sport reacted to the decision by vowing that his organisation wouldn't rest on its laurels and lurch back into complacency for fear of the risk of being kicked out again:
"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."
So, after a major scare, FILA were popping open their champagne bottles.
Jumping on the bandwagon, Dixie Carter initially expressed concern about how the vote would go on Twitter and then jubilation when the verdict came in:
Please IOC #SaveOlympicWrestling. On every level it would be a massive mistake not to keep a sport rich in Olympic history/popularity today
TODAY is one of the most important days in the 3,000 year history of our sport. We must #SaveOlympicWrestling. Let the IOC hear us! PLS RT
GREAT news!! Thx to Impact fans for your support. RT @fila_official: Wrestling wins IOC vote for 2020 Olympic Games http://usat.ly/1fMmCZK
Wrestling stays an Olympic Sport in 2020. Thanks to everyone who let their voice be heard. http://instagram.com/p/eAYb8pJtv9/
News flash to Dixie, though pro wrestling may take some roots from the amateur form, it's not the same and your campaign to save it didn't make a rats ass of difference. Maybe she should focus more on saving her own company?
Triple H also tweeted his congratulations to FILA in a less self serving fashion:
"Congrats.... Wrestling back in the Olympics.... Now that's "Best for Business"!!!!!!!"
So all's well that ends well, eh, Cagesiders?