Switzerland's Patrick Bauman and Russia's Anna Arzhanova have put themselves forward to be the new President of SportAccord, insidethegames can exclusively reveal.

Baumann is secretary general of the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and a member of the International Olympic Committee.

Arzhanova is President of the World Underwater Federation (CMAS). 

They have both filed their applications before tomorrow's deadline. 

Gian-Franco Kasper has been the acting President of SportAccord, the umbrella organisation for Olympic and non-Olympic sports, since last May.

He took over following resignation of Marius Vizer after his controversial criticism of Thomas Bach and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) at the SportAccord Convention in Sochi. 

The 72-year-old Swiss, head of the International Ski Federation, had always made it clear he did not want the position on a permanent basis. 

Francesco Ricci Bitti, President of the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations and former head of the International Tennis Federation, was another candidate to rule himself out.

He currently leads SportAccord Convention, currently in discussions to merge with SportAccord to form one body.

The 74-year-old believed it would improper for him to lead two bodies hoping to come together.

The election is due to held during the SportAccord General Assembly in Lausanne on April 22.

Switzerland's Patrick Baumann is secretary general of FIBA and a member of the IOC ©Getty Images
Switzerland's Patrick Baumann is secretary general of FIBA and a member of the IOC ©Getty Images

Baumann, 48, is seen as a close ally of Bach and increasingly influential within the IOC. 

He served on the IOC Evaluation Commissions for Beijing 2008 and 2012 and currently sits on the Marketing and Athletes' Entourage Commissions.

Baumann also led Lausanne's successful bid to host the 2020 Winter Youth Olympic Games and is now President of the Organising Committee.

He has served as SportAccord's treasurer for the last year. 

Arzhanova, a 46-year-old from Moscow and previously a member of Russia's shooting team, has been President of the CMAS since 2013.

She has been head of the Russian Underwater Federation since 2003.

Arzhanova was last year elected as a member of the Association of the IOC Recognised International Sports Federations following an election which required six ballots and took more than an hour to complete before she defeated John Liljelund, secretary general of the International Floorball Federation. 

Russia's Anna Arzhanova is President of the World Underwater Federation ©CMAS
Russia's Anna Arzhanova is President of the World Underwater Federation ©CMAS

Baumann would appear the obvious favourite but Arzhanova will draw a lot of support from the Federations who are not part of the Olympic programme.

Many non-Olympic Federations who belong to SportAccord fear that they could lose their voice if the organisation merges with SportAccord Convention. 

A total of 88 sports are currently voting members of SportAccord.

Only 31 of them are Olympic Federations. 

Governing bodies representing athletics, golf, rowing and shooting are all currently not members of SportAccord.

The four Federations were among the 22 Olympic and seven non-Olympic sports to leave last April and May in protest at Vizer's comments about Bach and the IOC last year.

insidethegames revealed earlier this month that the four Olympic Federations had no immediate plans to re-apply for membership.