Martial arts want Olympics so bad:
Karate to Olympics, Muay thai towards Olympic recognition, Sambo also ...
By Nickolai Dolgopolov, AIPS Vice-president
MOSCOW, May 4, 2012 - European Olympic Committees (EOC) is an international Olympic organization that unites 49 National Olympic Committees of Europe. These are the states developing the Olympic ideas in the Old Continent. The EOC Headquarters are located in Rome. The Head of EOC – Patrick Hickey, Ireland – is a member of IOC, holder of Black Belt in Judo and a participant of the first international SAMBO tournament in Europe. The Vice President of EOC is Alexandr Kozlovsky (Russia), a member of Executive Committee of Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC). It was his support that made it possible for SAMBO to be introduced to the Management of EOC.
At the very end of April EOC gathered in Budapest for a seminar during which a meeting of the Executive Committee, workshops were hold and reports of future Olympic Games host cities London and Sochi were presented.
The matters discussed at the workshops of EOC reflected the most important activities of the European sport: selection of young talented athletes and new options of development of communications in the world of sport.
Europe is a “conservative continent, and it was both honorable and exciting for FIAS representatives – the Head of its Development Department Andrey Moshanov and press - attaché Natalia Yukhareva – to present it to the highest sports officials of this continent. However, they were supported by strong European SAMBO traditions, on the one hand, and the keen interest of the European sports leaders at their presentations. For them, SAMBO was an interesting and delightful topic. It was the 33rd meeting of the highest Olympic officials of Europe, but the first one at which a new sport was introduced.
Europe was chosen as the platform to launch the development of SAMBO in the world, its practical importance and social projects of FIAS were the three pillars SAMBO leaned on during the presentation in Hungary. As a result SAMBO was invited to participate in the General Assembly of EOC that will take place in the city of Eilat (Israel) in the Mediterranean Coast.
EOC president Patrick Hickey assured FIAS representatives that he was interested in development of SAMBO in Europe and invited them, including the President of International SAMBO Federation Vasily Shestakov to take part in the winter Assembly.
That is where the many preliminary agreements related to EOC’s assistance to SAMBO are likely to be formalized.
SAMBO’s debut at the forum of Olympic Europe included series of meetings between the Heads of National Olympic Committees and the Head of FIAS Development Department Andrey Moshanov. They exchanged opinions on the nuances and peculiarities of recognition of a sport by the highest sports authorities in each of their respective countries which helped Mr. Moshanov to understand the strong and the weak points of SAMBO”s development and map out a cooperation plan.
Malta, Italy, Cyprus, Andorra, Poland, Macedonia, and France – that is the incomplete list of countries the Olympic Committees of which agreed to support SAMBO in Europe.
The next similar seminar will be held in September, in San-Marino. Mr. Patrick Hickey assured FIAS that he would be glad to see FIAS representatives at the seminar and to hear from their own lips about the progress of SAMBO both in Europe and in the world.
The FIAS representatives are sure that such progress is possible; and after the presentations and meetings the confidence has grown a lot. Now, the most important thing is to materialize the plans from day to day, without fear of hard routine work. Hard work cannot scare us FIAS as SAMBO’s team is inspired by the common goal to promote SAMBO as an Olympic sport.