Archive for the ‘Modern Pentathlon’ Category

Greek civilization, Plinth of kouros statue, bas-relief depicting wrestlers, circa 510 B.C., detail, from Kerameikos necropolis in Athens, GreeceTo truly understand the lunacy behind the International Olympic Committee’s recently announced decision to drop wrestling from the Olympic program for the 2020 Games, one need only learn of the events that comprise the modern pentathlon, a sport that was deemed more worthy of continuance.

  • Pistol shooting;
  • Fencing;
  • 200 metre freestyle swimming;
  • Show jumping; and
  • Three kilometre cross-country run.

The competition is referred to as the modern pentathlon as a means of differentiating itself from the original pentathlon of the ancient Olympic Games. The events of the unlikely forefather were much different than those contested as part of today’s pentathlon.

  • 180 metre dash;
  • Long jump;
  • Javelin;
  • Discus; and
  • Wrestling.

Yes, wrestling, in a certain sense, helped beget a bastardized competition that is now an Olympic sport while it is not. However, the IOC wasn’t attempting to make a literary reference with this almost appropriately Oedipal turn of events.

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