By Duncan Mackay

Claude-Louis_Gallien__with_George_KillianAugust 9 - Frenchmen Claude-Louis Gallien was today elected as the new President of FISU, the international university sports federation, at its General Assembly in Shenzen.

The 68-year-old former French university hammer champion won the election against incumbent, American George Killian, with 76 votes to 67, which was held ahead of the 26th Universiade, which is due to open in the Chinese city on Friday (August 12) and last until August 23. 

This followed the last minute withdrawal of two candidates - Finland's Risto Nieminen and Sweden's Stefan Bergh.

Gallien's first act in his new role was to ask the Assembly to bestow upon Killian the title of Honorary President, which was approved with acclamation.

The 87-year-old Killian had held the post since 1999 when he succeeded Primo Nebiolo, the President of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF), following his death.

"Election is a competition and in university sport you never compete against – you compete first with yourself and also together with others for a common goal, which is excellence," said Gallien, who had been the FISU vice-president.

"We are university sport and we are excellent in mind and body."

Killian urged the Assembly to support his successor.

"'ve been involved in university sport because it is a great way to have and effect on young people," he said.

"I encourage you to give your full support to the new President and the Executive Committee, because you have to work as a team to have progress.

"I wish Claude and his board well in their work as leading this organisation is not an easy task."

Gallien is a vice-president of the French National Olympic Committee and is heavily involved in fighting doping, including being a member of the International Olympic Committee's Medical Commission scientific group. 

Russian Oleg Matytsin was elected First-vice president with 96 votes to 47 against Serbian Sinisa Jasnic.

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