Court: Abrahamian was right

Peter Vinthagen Simpson
Peter Vinthagen Simpson - [email protected] • 24 Aug, 2008 Updated Sun 24 Aug 2008 11:59 CEST
Court: Abrahamian was right

The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) has said in a ruling that Swedish wrestler Ara Abrahamian had reason for being angry when he lost his semi-final bout against Andrea Minguzzi.


Ara Abrahamian was stripped of his bronze medal and disqualified from the Olympics when he threw his medal down in the awards ceremony in disgust and protest at the decision which led to him losing his bout against Minguzzi on August 14th.

Minguzzi went on to win the gold.

CAS ruled that Abrahamian should have been given another round as a penalty awarded against him hadn't been assessed until after the second round of his 84-kilogram bout had ended. Abrahamian as a result automatically lost the match.

CAS also criticized the judges at the match for not listening to the Swedish protests.

The International Federation of Associated Wrestling Styles (Fila) then refused to consider Abrahamian's protest, a decision to which the wrestler replied:

"My semi-final round loss today was totally unjustified. The controversial ruling shows that FILA (the sport's governing body International Amateur Wrestling Federation) does not play fair."

The CAS judges have given their support to Abrahamian and recommended that Fila changes its regulations to allow for protests to be heard in time for the next Olympics.

"We limit ourselves to ruling that FILA must, consistent with the (Olympic) Charter and general principles of fairness, establish for the future a jury of appeal to determine the validity or otherwise of complaints of the kind ventilated by (Abrahamian)," the judges wrote according to news agency AP.

The CAS panel responsible for the ruling and the 20-page report was made up of English judge Michael J Beloff, Malaysian Thomas Lee and was led by the US judge David Rivkin.


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