Watanabe: "Gymnastics is the King of Sports!"
In the first interviews the new President told to the media: "The time has come now for innovation in gymnastics. Today we sent a strong message to the world. Our gymnastics is not a sport that is popular only at the Olympic Games. Gymnastics is now and will be the king of sports."
Watanabe is a sports business management professional. He joined the Japanese gymnastics association in 2001 with the goal of reviving the sport following a medal drought for Japan at the 1996 and 2000 Olympics. Japan has won medals in gymnastics at every games since. Watanabe also headed the organising committees of the 2009 Rhythmic Gymnastics World Championships in western Japan and the 2011 Artistic Gymnastics World Championships in Tokyo.
Following the election of the new FIG President, the Congress was called to choose his three
♦♦ Vice Presidents:
- Vasily Titov (RUS), the only incumbent Vice President to offer his candidacy again, was re-elected in the first round while the two other posts went to five-time Olympic champion
- Nellie Kim (BLR) – winner of three gold medals at Montreal 1976 and two more at Moscow 1980 and long-term TC president of women's artistic gymnastics, and
– Luo Chaoyi (CHN).
♦ The presidents of Technical committees are:
♦ Men’s Artistic Gymnastics: Steve Butcher (USA) re-elected
♦ Women’s Artistic Gymnastics: Donatella Sacchi (ITA) - new!
♦ Rhythmic Gymnastics: Nataliya Kuzmina (RUS) re-elected
♦ Trampoline Gymnastics: Horst Kunze (GER) re-elected
♦ Aerobic Gymnastics: Sergio Garcia Alcazar (ESP) - new!
♦ Acrobatic Gymnastics: Rosy Taeymans (BEL) re-elected
♦ Gymnastics for All committee: Margaret Sikkens Ahlquist (SWE) - new!
♦ Members of Executiv Committee are ...:
♦ Ali Al Hitmi (QAT) re-elected
♦ Jesus Carballo Martinez (ESP) - new!
♦ Ron Galimore (USA) - new!
♦ Youssef Altabbaa (SYR) - new!
♦ Jani Tanskanen (FIN) - new!
♦ Martin Reddin (GBR) - new!
♦ Kim Dong Min (KOR) - new!
- Wolfgang Willam (GER) - non-elected
- Alejandro Peniche (MEX) - non-elected
* source: f i g