Local Olympian speaks out about changes to wrestling - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Local Olympian speaks out about changes to wrestling


One of the oldest sports in Olympic history could be in jeopardy. The International Olympic Committee has dropped wrestling from the 2020 Olympic program. The news has left athletes every where stunned.

The sport dates back to 1896.

"This the best sport, I believe," Olympic wrestler Ben Provisor said.

But now in a surprise move by the IOC, wrestling has been dropped from the 2020 games.

"It's a terrible disservice to the young kids that work so hard in the sport," Provisor explained.

The news has upset Olympic wrestlers everywhere, including Stevens Point native Ben Provisor. Provisor talked with Newsline 9 during a Skype interview.

"I was planning on doing this for 12 more years," Provisor said.

Provisor competed in the 2012 Olympic Games in London. It's an experience he says he'll never forget.

"I learned so many life lessons in wrestling, how to work hard, cut weight, prioritize time."

 Now, he fears his future dreams could be shattered.

"I have a lot more goals than going to one Olympics."

An IOC Spokesman released a statement saying, "it's not a case of what's wrong with wrestling, it is what's right with the 25 core sports." Mark Adams, the spokesperson went on to say eliminating one sport will allow the committee to add a new sport to the Olympic lineup later this year. That means wrestling will now join seven other sports vying for inclusion in the 2020 games.

But even officials at the high school level say that's not the way it should be.

"Change the rules, change anything else, don't take away the game," Wausau West Athletic Director Dan Hein said.

But for Provisor, all he can do is wait and hope his Olympic career will stretch further into the future.

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