COSIER-SUR-VEVEY, Switzerland – Ten outstanding wrestling contributors, representing leadership both on the mat and in support of the sport, will be inducted into the Fédération Internationale des Luttes Associées (FILA) Hall of Fame Class of 2013 this September in Budapest, Hungary.
“I want to thank the work of our Hall of Fame Commission and FILA Vice President Stan Dziedzic, who heads the commission, on the honorees they have selected for the Hall of Fame Class of 2013,” said FILA President Nenad Lalovic. “This is the 10th anniversary of the FILA Hall of Fame that pays tribute to those individuals in our sport whose legacies of excellence are worthy of preserving.”
FILA, the international governing body for the sport of wrestling, which is battling to keep the sport on the Olympic program beyond 2016, will induct one leader, one referee, two female wrestlers, three Greco-Roman wrestlers and three men’s freestyle wrestlers in conjunction with the FILA World Championships in Budapest, Hungary, on Sept. 20.
“What is amazing about this year’s class of honorees is that collectively, they represent 35 World Championships medals and 10 Olympic medals in the categories of men’s and women’s freestyle and Greco-Roman wrestling” Stan Dziedzic said. “Past FILA President Milan Ercegan saw early the role the sport of wrestling could play for the women of the world. Marianne Nobs, this year’s referee inductee, was among these pioneers. She showed the officials of the world the meaning of excellence, dignity and integrity. ”
A Greco-Roman World Champion for Hungary in 1986 at 100 kg, Tamas Gaspar is being inducted into the FILA Hall of Fame as a Leader. Gaspar earned gold (1986) and three silver medals (1979, 1981 and 1985) in the World Championships during his competitive career. He was elected Hungarian Sportsman-of-the-Year in 1984 for winning a gold medal at that year’s European Championships. His leadership on the mat carried over to his professional contributions as Director of the Hungarian Wrestling Federation and as chief organizer of 15 major FILA world events since 1992, earning him the distinction of the Leader award by the FILA Hall of Fame.
Marianne Nobs of Switzerland will be inducted into the FILA Hall of Fame as an Official. She was a FILA Referee from 1988-2012 and earned the FILA Golden Whistle in 2000. She was the Vice President and Head Referee for the Swiss Wrestling Federation from 2002-2011. Nobs has officiated five Olympic Games (1996, 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012) and 38 World Championships during her career as an official.
The two female freestyle wrestlers being inducted are:
Carol Huynh from Canada is an Olympic Champion (2008) in women’s freestyle wrestling at 48 kg. She earned a bronze medal in the 2012 Olympic Games. In World Championship competition, she earned a silver medal in 2001 and added three bronze medals at the 2000, 2005 and 2010 tournaments.
Irini Merleni from Ukraine won the very first Olympic gold medal in women’s freestyle wrestling at 48 kg in 2004. She was a bronze medalist in the 2008 Olympics. She won three World titles in 2000, 2001 and 2003, as well as World Championship silver medals in 2005 and 2007.
The three men’s freestyle wrestlers being inducted are:
Russian Sergei Kornilaev, competing for the USSR, weighing 48 kg was a bronze medalist in freestyle at the 1980 Olympic Games in Moscow. He also claimed four World Championships in 1978, 1979, 1981 and 1982.
Elbrus Tedeiev from Ukraine won a gold medal (2004) and a bronze (1996) in the Olympic Games in freestyle wrestling at 66 kg. He was a three-time World champion, winning in 1995, 1999 and 2002, and a World Bronze medalist in 2001.
Aleksandr Ivanitsky competed for the USSR while winning an Olympic gold medal in the 1964 Olympic Games in the 97 kg and over category. He dominated his weight class by winning four World titles in 1962, 1963, 1965 and 1966.
The three Greco-Roman wrestlers being inducted are:
Ferenc Kocsis competed for Hungary while claiming the gold medal at the 1980 Olympic Games at 74 kg. Kocsis also earned three World championship medals, gold in 1979, silver in 1978 and bronze in 1977.
Viktor Igumenov of Russia earned five Greco-Roman World titles in 1966, 1967, 1969, 1970 and 1971 for the USSR at 74 kg.
Shamil Sherikov of Kazakhstan earned an Olympic Gold medal in Greco-Roman at the 1980 Olympic Games and two World Titles in 1978 and 1979 in the 57 kg weight category.
FILA will hold the 2013 Hall of Fame inductions at the Best Western Hotel in Budapest. For more information about the induction ceremonies and to view all 90 FILA Hall of Fame inductees from 30 countries visit the FILA website at http://fila-official.com.