PARIS (August 25) – The bureau of United World Wrestling wrapped up its week of meetings Thursday night at the Pullman Hotel in Bercy, passing several recommendations including the designation for the ten new weight categories and the announcement of host cities for the 2018 season.
The new weight categories were the most deliberated issues of the meetings. Last year, United World Wrestling president stated the intention for wrestling to move from 8 to 10 weight categories, prompting speculation on how those new weights would be distributed and if they would affect the six Olympic weight categories.
In the end, the bureau chose an overall moderate approach, looking to impact as few existing weight categories as possible.
Freestyle will keep all their current Olympic and non-Olympic weight categories and will simply add 79kg and 92kg.
Women’s wrestling will increase the lowest weight from 48kg to 50kg and slightly redistribute several weight categories, most by only one or two kilograms.
Greco-Roman went through the largest shift in assignments, adjusting nearly all the weight categories.
Junior-level and U-23 wrestlers will also compete at the senior-level weight categories.
The bureau also announced an updated list of host cities for the 2018 season, highlighted by Nigeria taking on the Cadet, Junior and Senior African Championships. The Nigerian Wrestling Federation, led by 2000 Olympic gold medalist Daniel IGALI (Canada), is coming off their best-ever performance at the 2017 world championships and will host the event in Port Harcourt.
Yigo (Guam) will host all three Oceania age-level events, while Bishkek (Krygzstan) takes the Asian Senior championships, Lima the Pan-Am Senior championships, and Kapiisk (Russia) the European Senior Championships.
The U-23 World Championship have been awarded to Bucharest, Romania, with Trnava (Slovakia) hosting the Junior World Championships and the Cadet World Championships headed to Zagreb (Croatia).
- The two-day competition format was approved for the 2018 season and will commence on January 1, 2018. A 2-kilo allowance for the second day will be granted for one year. On January 1, 2019, the allowance will no longer be available.
- The Olympic qualification system was approved, with the World Championships (6), Continental qualifiers (8) and a World Open (2) accounting for the 16 allotments. Continental championships will also be held.
- Cadet and Schoolboy weight categories have been approved. They will be released in the coming days.
- Four-year referee education plan was approved. The plan runs from 2017-2021
- Scoreboards to count down from 6 minutes to 0.
- Cautions are now 1-point.
- A new rule book will be published shortly and placed on the website