By sportswriter Li Jia
SHENYANG, China, Aug. 31 (Xinhua) -- IOC presidential candidate Ng Ser Miang of Singapore said here Saturday that wrestling is quite hopeful to regain its position at the 2020 Olympic Games.
The IOC vice-president was in the capital city of northeast China's Liaoning Province to attend the opening ceremony of the 12th Chinese National Games.
"Wrestling had always considered themselves as one of the most ancient sports and seldom made any changes before," said the 64-year-old Ng, who chaired the inaugural Youth Olympic Games in Singapore in 2010.
"However, the International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles (FILA) has done its best to make improvement. The women's events were included and some rules were changed. I think wrestling is very hopeful to regain its position at the 2020 Olympic Games."
"Taekwondo did a good job at the London Olympc Games as it adopted an instant-replay system to avoid judging controversies," Ng said.
Wrestling was surprisingly taken off the 2020 Olympics by the IOC Executive Board in a February vote as the IOC looked to refresh its sports program.
It has since battled back into contention, joining squash and baseball/softball as the three candidates on a shortlist for one spot on the program of the 2020 Olympics. The IOC will select one of them at its session in Buenos Aires on Sept. 8.
Ng also gave some advice to Chinese Wushu as the sport are still making effort to enter the Olympics. "Wushu has made some progress in promoting itself around the world. The most important is to choose the most suitable and attracting deciplines," he said.
"The competition is very fierce as there are already Judo and taekwondo at the Olympic Games," added Ng.
"We are considering giving more sports the chance to enter the Olympic Games, and for that reason we may cut some events of some sports," he said.
Ng is considered a strong contender among the six candidates vying to replace Belgian Jacques Rogge as IOC president in a vote in Buenos Aires on Sept. 10.
He is one of the two candidates from Asia, along with Chinese Taipei's C.K. Wu, head of the International Boxing Federation. Germany's Thomas Bach is touted as the front-runner, followed by Ng and Puerto Rican banker Richard Carrion. Ukrainian pole-vault great Sergey Bubka and Denis Oswald of Switzerland are the other hopefuls.
Ng praised the scaled-down opening ceremony of the Chinese National Games and said it was spectacular and vibrant.
"I think the idea of frugality should also be adopted in the Asian Youth Games, Youth Olympic Games, and even the Olympic Games," he said.
Ng will leave for Buenos Aires on Sunday.