Olympic Wrestling and Olympic Broadcasting Services explore innovative improvements to increase Sports Appeal Through TV

By Bob Condron FILA | June 27, 2013, 3:16 p.m. (ET)
CORSIER-SUR VEVEY, Switzerland (June 26).FILA, the international federation for the sport of Olympic-style wrestling, requested a meeting with Olympic Broadcasting Services (OBS) on matters affecting the presentation and scheduling of the sport at the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

The meeting took place at OBS headquarters in Madrid on Monday, 24, June.

The meeting included Yiannis Exarchos, the Chief Executive Officer, OBS; Kostas Kapatais, Senior Coordinating Producer, OBS; Makoto Nakamura, Senior Coordinating producer, OBS; and Karl-Martin Dittman, General Secretary of the German Wrestling Federation

OBS noted that wrestling has recently made improvements that were crucial for the sport. Specifically cited were: the addition of women's wrestling in 2004, a new format of competition with each category in each style lasting a single day and the introduction of video judging.

Additionally, OBS commended FILA on the new competition rules that were recently approved. These rules encourage action, penalize passivity, reward the aggressor and will allow television to better capture wrestling as a "fast thinking sport."

In a note to FILA President Nenad Lalovic, CEO Exarchos stated, "I would like to extend my thanks to FILA for this visit which gave us the opportunity to discuss the experience from broadcasting Wrestling in previous editions of the Olympic Games and, more importantly, about ways to improve the presentation of the sport in the Olympic context in the future."

Following the meeting OBS and FILA will study the potential inclusion of a mini Point of View camera closer to the field of play, optimally placed on the referee, to provide a unique view of the athlete's activity.. Additionally, the capture and introduction of biometrics data into the match broadcast will be explored. Both of these attempts to modernize the presentation of wrestling would provide viewers with access to information and insights that have never been available before.

"FILA appreciated the opportunity to meet with the television experts at OBS and to learn from their experience" said Lalovic. "The advice that has been provided will help us to better serve the needs of broadcasters and to provide a more attractive and exciting presentation of our sport to TV audiences around the world."

"Just as we have modernized our rules, we must explore innovative ways in which we can better present our sport to a wide audience" Lalovic added. "We've got a great sport, but we must embrace new technologies, new presentations and let the world see the unique aspects of wrestling."

FILA is also discussing ways to present its sport such as making the weigh-ins a special event, competitive gear that differentiates Greco-Roman from freestyle and lighting, mat setup, time management and design that will add to the presentation of the event.

About FILA
FILA, the International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles, is the global governing body of the sport of wrestling. It works to promote the sport and facilitate the activities of its 177 national federations from around the world. It is based in Vevey, Switzerland.

To learn more about FILA's campaign to keep wrestling in the Olympic Games visit its official website, http://www.fila-official.com/; Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/fila.official, or Twitter handle, @FILA_Official.

(For more information please contact FILA at 41.21 312 84 26 or Bob Condron, Press Officer, condron@fila-wrestling.com)