The Parliament of Estonia committee of sports support: wrestling must remain as an event in the Olympic games

The Parliament of Estonia committee of sports support and recreation met with Estonian Wrestling Federation, Estonian Olympic Committee and NPO Support Estonian Wrestling representatives in order to discuss the overall state of wrestling in Estonia and the world after IOC decided to drop wrestling from the 2020 Olympic Games. All participants stressed the importance of wrestling in Estonian culture and sports thereby confirming the need for support by The Parliament of Estonia.
Chairman of the support committee Lauri Luik said that saving Olympic wrestling-one of the oldest sports events in the World- would not just be the matter of the hearts of sport enthusiasts, but also a vital step for Estonia.“Throughout decades our athletes have won many medals for Estonia. We remember them with utmost respect. Martin Klein, Georg Hackenschmidt, Georg Lurich, Kristjan Palusalu, Johannes Kotkas, Valeri Nikitin and Heiki Nabi are the best known World-renown Estonian wrestlers. The list of medallists is much longer“: said Luik. „I believe the long list of successful wrestlers speaks for itself and for the importance of wrestling in Estonia“: he added.
The Parliament of Estonia committee of sports support and recreation vice-chairman Erki Nool winner of the gold medal for decathlon in the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney suggested a declaration be drafted that would confirm wrestling as one of the ten main events in the Olympic games by the IOC.
Secretary-general of EOC Siim Sukles admitted, that due to the suprise descision in February by the IOC sportsenthusiastst have come to visit the politicians of The Parliament of Estonia, and that can be precieved as a positive development. Sukles stressed that EOC supports Estonian wrestling in every way possible. Another clear supporter is Neinar Seli the president of EOC, he is an advocate for wrestling on international meetings, where he points out the importance of wrestling. Sukles added: „Wrestling is the cornerstone of Estonian sports.“
Support committee vice-chairman Jüri Jaanson who took part in six Olympic Games winning silver in Athens in the single scull and four years later, in Beijing in 2008 in the men's double sculls said that wrestling is not simply on our minds, but also in our subconciousness and has always been an essential part of the Olympic games.
NPO Support Estonian Wrestling board member Martin Plaser mentioned:“ Wrestling is magical! (Maadlus on maagiline- alliteration in Estonian)“ as he made his case in support of wrestling.
The Parliament of Estonia committee of sports support and recreation members vouched that the will support Estonian wrestling and will aid in its re-inauguration to the Olympic Games.

Additional information: Lauri Luik
Member of The Parliament of Estonia
tel: 56 659 599
e-post: lauri.luik@riigikogu.ee
Antti Lepik
Estonian Wrestling Federation secretary-general
tel: 514 9591
e-post: antti@maadlusliit.ee

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