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  1. #1
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    Tokyo Olympic Games will start on 23 July, 2021 and run to 8 August [Post#24]

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/olympics/23983931

    The cities bidding to host the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics have made their presentations and described why they should stage the Games.

    Istanbul, Tokyo and Madrid are the contenders in a secret ballot that will be announced at 21:00 BST on Saturday.
    Come on Istanbul !

  2. #2
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    Madrid eliminated.

    I want Istanbul. That would be a beautiful games.

    Tokyo would be good too, but a pain to follow. I remember getting up at ridiculous hours to watch the World Cup in Japan. BST you would have things like the rowing at 2 in the morning.

  3. #3
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    I would say Istanbul should get it

  4. #4
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    Can't be Tokyo can it due to the nuclear issues still ongoing over Fukushima.

  5. #5
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    The country providing the best legacy is most likely to get the games. That's the reason London got the games and 'It delivered' the results in terms of creating atmosphere and as it's motto, probably did 'inspire a generation' in terms of getting involved in sport.

    What can be looked at is if the benefits are wide spread and long term? That's something which will have influence on this bid as well. It's more than just the games and that's what is most likely to be considered.

  6. #6
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    Istanbul for the win ...bigger budget ..I guess..maybe.
    Last edited by classic; 8th September 2013 at 01:51.

  7. #7
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    Tokyo wins ! The 'safe bid' wins as the Japanese said - I guess after the 2011 tsunami and the horrors their people endured, it is deserved, they have the infrastructure plus those summer protests in Turkey helped their chances.

  8. #8
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    Re: Who will host the 2020 Olympics ? (Decision at 9pm)

    Tokyo got it... People were crying and whet not.

  9. #9
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    Tokyo wins Olympics 2020!


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  10. #10
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    Japan's Olympic minister says the Tokyo 2020 Games could be postponed from the summer until later in the year amid fears over the coronavirus outbreak.

    In a response to a question in Japan's parliament, Seiko Hashimoto said Tokyo's contract with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) "calls for the Games to be held within 2020".

    She added that "could be interpreted as allowing a postponement".

    The Games are due to be held from 24 July to 9 August.

    "We are doing all we can to ensure that the Games go ahead as planned," Hashimoto added.

    IOC president Thomas Bach said last week that the organisation is "fully committed" to hosting the event as scheduled.

    Under the hosting agreement the right to cancel the Games remains with the IOC.

    A number of high-profile sporting events have already been cancelled or postponed as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, including the 2020 World Athletics Indoor Athletics Championships and the Chinese Grand Prix, which was scheduled for 19 April.

    The coronavirus, which originated in China, has spread to more than 60 countries and claimed more than 3,000 lives so far.

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/olympics/51717839


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  11. #11
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    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has begun to shift his messaging on the Tokyo Olympics, in a sign he may have accepted that the deadly coronavirus will make it necessary to postpone the event planned to start in July.

    Abe and his cabinet, as well as the organizers and Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike, had until days ago been unanimous in insisting the Games would be staged as scheduled. But, following a G-7 leaders’ video conference on the coronavirus Monday, Abe avoided comment on the timing of the event.

    “I want to hold the Olympics and Paralympics perfectly, as proof that the human race will conquer the new coronavirus, and I gained support for that from the G-7 leaders,” he told reporters after the event.

    Sporting events around the globe have been called off, delayed or held without spectators because of the virus, raising questions on whether it would be safe to bring hundreds of thousands of athletes, officials and spectators together in Tokyo. Last week, U.S. President Donald Trump suggested the Tokyo Olympics should be pushed back a year.

    Asked whether the timing of the event was discussed, Abe repeated the same phrases without answering directly. He also used similar words when asked about the issue in parliament Monday.

    Abe’s comments come after a poll showed almost two thirds of Japanese voters thought the Olympics should be postponed due to the pandemic. Japan’s prime minister had been closely associated with Tokyo hosting the games -- flying to Buenos Aires in 2013 to make a bid for Japan’s case in person and appearing at the closing ceremonies for the Rio Games four years ago dressed as the Super Mario video game character to promote Tokyo 2020.

    “The politics of delaying the games have shifted. In the early days of the crisis, delaying would have been an admission that Abe had failed to manage it. Now that it’s a global crisis, delaying may be what’s necessary to defend the Japanese people,” Tobias Harris, a Japan analyst for Teneo Intelligence in Washington, wrote on Twitter.

    Proceed As Planned?
    With a growing number of qualifying events already canceled, the summer start date is looking increasingly impracticable. The Tokyo Organizing Committee is asking that spectators stay away from Japan’s torch relay beginning at the end of the month, Kyodo News reported, an event usually expected to drum up excitement for the games.

    Olympics Minister Seiko Hashimoto later denied that Abe’s comments meant any delay to the event.

    “Holding it perfectly means preparing properly to hold it as planned, and working together to that end,” she said Tuesday. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga also said there was no change to Japan’s preparations.

    The French Olympic committee chief was reported as saying earlier that the virus must be on the wane by late May to allow the Tokyo Games to take place in July.

    In response, Hashimoto reiterated that the International Olympic Committee had the authority to make the decision.

    “I am aware of various individual opinions, but the government’s position is to provide support in close cooperation with the IOC, the organizing committee and the Tokyo metropolitan government,” she said.

    The Olympic Games haven’t been canceled since the summer of 1944, when they were called off due to World War Two.

    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/artic...tokyo-olympics


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  12. #12
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    IOC is 'fully committed' to Tokyo Olympics


    The International Olympic Committee does not plan any "drastic" decisions about the Tokyo 2020 Games, saying it remains fully committed to the event being staged in four months time despite the global spread of the coronavirus.

    The IOC said in a statement, following discussions with international sports federations, that changes would need to be made to the qualifiers due to the impact of the virus but it plans to go ahead with the July 24-August 9 Olympics.

    "The IOC remains fully committed to the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, and with more than four months to go before the Games there is no need for any drastic decisions at this stage," it said in a statement on Tuesday.

    "Any speculation at this moment would be counter-productive.

    "The IOC encourages all athletes to continue to prepare for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 as best they can," it said, less than an hour after European soccer body UEFA postponed its 2020 European championship to 2021.

    Speculation about whether the Olympics can be held has mounted by the day due to concerns about the virus, which has infected almost 190,000 people and killed over 7500 worldwide, with the epicentre now being Europe.

    Sports competitions have come to a halt in many parts of the world, wreaking havoc with Olympic qualifiers across 33 sports. The IOC on Monday scrapped any remaining boxing qualifiers due to the virus.

    So far 57 per cent of the 11,000 athletes have already secured their spot.

    "For the remaining 43% of places, the IOC will work with the international federations to make any necessary and practical adaptations to their respective qualification systems for Tokyo 2020," the Olympic body said.

    It said qualification could also be based on ranking or historical results as well.

    "The IOC has confidence that the many measures being taken by many authorities around the world will help contain the situation of the COVID-19 virus."

    Earlier on Tuesday, it was announced that the deputy head of Japan's Olympic committee, Kozo Tashima, had tested positive for coronavirus.

    The Japan Football Association (JFA), where Tashima, 62, doubles as the chairman, said he had travelled to Britain, the Netherlands and the United States from late February to early March, and was confirmed as positive for the virus.

    "I had a small fever and after I've got checked it also looks like I have symptoms of pneumonia, but I'm doing fine," Tashima said through the JFA. He said he would continue treatment at a local health facility.

    Japan's Olympics Minister Seiko Hashimoto said the Games would be held on time and with spectators present, but the organisers said the torch relay kick off, slated for Fukushima on March 26, will be held without spectators.

    Many other events along the torch relay route have been curtailed or cancelled and spectators have been asked to stay away and not form crowds.

    The JFA said it would disinfect its headquarters and investigate where those present at its board meetings have travelled.

    It said it would also examine the health of the officials from other sports organisations based in its building.

    https://au.sports.yahoo.com/japan-ol...8417--spt.html

  13. #13
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    It is too early to decide whether to cancel the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, says World Athletics chief Lord Coe.

    The International Olympic Committee has said the Games could still begin on 24 July despite the coronavirus pandemic causing other events to be cancelled.

    Coe told BBC Sport: "Let's not make a precipitous decision when we don't have to four months out."

    However, he added: "If you had to ease that date, you'd have to ease it. It is possible. Anything is possible."

    Speaking on the Today Programme on BBC Radio 4, Coe, who was chair of the London 2012 organising committee, also said: "Events are changing by the hour but it is not a decision that has to be made at the moment.

    "We're trying to manage the situation with the information we have but there is not a great deal of information.

    "The temperature in the room with the IOC is, nobody is saying we're going to the Games come what may."

    The IOC says it held "constructive" talks with athlete representatives about the coronavirus crisis earlier this week.

    President Thomas Bach admitted he was "confronted with many questions" over qualification and restrictions but insisted that "everybody realised that we still have more than four months to go" until Tokyo 2020.

    On Thursday, Tokyo 2020 organisers received the Olympic flame in a scaled-down ceremony in Athens' Panathenaic stadium, site of the first modern Games in Greece in 1896.

    The flame was then transferred into a small holder to travel to Japan on a special aircraft named 'Tokyo 2020 Go.'

    In a video message Tokyo 2020 organising chief Yoshiro Mori said he hoped the flame's arrival would help "shake off the dark clouds hanging over the world".

    When asked about the prospect of pushing the Olympics back a year to 2021, Coe replied: "It seems on the surface an easy proposition but athletics has its worlds on that date, the Euros in football have been moved back a year.

    "The sporting calendar is a complicated matrix and it is not easy to move from one year to the next. It would be ridiculous to say anything is ruled out at the moment. The whole world wants clarity; we're no different from any other sector.

    "In athletics we've postponed three Diamond League meetings but not all, because we don't have to make that decision. Everybody accepts this is a fast-moving environment. I need to be careful I'm not removing the earning potential from athletes any more than I need to at this moment."

    Not 'much of a choice' but to call them off
    In contrast to Coe, former Olympic champion rower Sir Matthew Pinsent said he did not see "much of a choice" but to postpone or cancel the Games.

    "I just think there are bigger things to worry about at this stage on a global front," Britain's four-time Olympic gold medallist told BBC Radio 4.

    "For most of the European countries as well as Asian countries, organised sport in any meaningful way has ceased, and that's from government advice. I don't see there's any way forward for an Olympic athlete to train effectively - even as an individual, but particularly in a team environment.

    "Obviously I came from rowing, and rowing squads around Europe and the world are essentially downing tools and going into lockdown as their individual governments are mandating that they should - I just think it's unfair.

    "It's unfair for the Olympics to say we're going to carry on. There are the two big forces in an Olympic athlete's life, which is the Olympics and everything else. And those two things are pulling in different directions at this moment."

    Asked why he felt the IOC was insisting the Games would go ahead, Pinsent added: "I think they feel a responsibility to Tokyo.

    "We know having hosted in 2012 that seven-year build up is a crescendo of energy and concentration and effort on behalf of the city and on behalf of the nation and the government. Everybody takes a pride in it.

    "I know that Tokyo have done exactly the same and actually the financial stakes are much higher for the host city than they are for the IOC."

    Meanwhile British race walker Tom Bosworth has told BBC Sport that the Olympics should be put back until the autumn.

    "It would be a very tough one but in my opinion I think it should be postponed to allow everybody to qualify, to allow the build-up to be correct for what should be a really great and really successful Olympic Games," he said.

    "If I'm honest I don't think there is enough time to properly build towards a Games, whether that is build athlete profiles, build the teams, allow people to qualify who haven't qualified. I think for all involved a slight delay is probably the best option."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/olympics/51958640


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  14. #14
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    Stay strong Tokyo, the world will be a much safer place by then InshaAllah

  15. #15
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    For sure this will be cancelled.

  16. #16
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    So it'll become an unintentional Winter Olympics??


    Have some Sehwag in your life.

  17. #17
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    USA Track and Field, athletics' US governing body, has called for this summer's Olympics in Tokyo to be delayed because of the ongoing coronavirus situation.

    The federation has asked the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee to advocate to the International Olympic Committee for the postponement of the Games.

    It follows a request from USA Swimming for it to be delayed by 12 months.

    The Olympics are scheduled to take place from 24 July to 9 August.

    USA Track and Field chief executive Max Siegel wrote in a letter to the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee: "We certainly understand the ramifications of this request, and the realities of trying to coordinate the logistics of a postponed Olympic Games around the schedules of other athletes, sport federations, key stakeholders etc.

    "But the alternative of moving forward in light of the current global situation would not be in the best interest of our athletes (as difficult as that decision might be)."

    There are a growing number of calls for the Games not to take place this summer.

    UK Athletics chairman Nic Coward recently suggested that the Olympics should be postponed, while Brazil, Norway and Slovenia's Olympic committees have also urged the IOC to take action and put it back to next year.

    Four-time Olympic champion and BBC Sport pundit Michael Johnson fears athletes could "risk their lives" trying to train for the Games and called for clarity on the IOC's decision-making process.

    "IOC should communicate the window for deciding on the '20 Olympics," tweeted the former US sprinter. "Athletes must keep training but for many there's nowhere to train.

    "They may risk their lives and others trying to continue training. Answer isn't just cancel ASAP. But communicate the process to the athletes."

    On Friday, International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach told the New York Times "different scenarios" for Tokyo 2020 are now being considered for the first time.

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/athletics/51988459


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  18. #18
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  19. #19
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    What is happening with the Olympics?

    This year's Olympics Games have been thrown into doubt because of the coronavirus pandemic, with athletes and officials calling for a decision about Tokyo 2020 to be made quickly by the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

    Here are some of the most significant developments:

    Canada became the first major nation to withdraw from the Games
    Australia's team says it is "clear" the Games cannot go ahead
    Poland has also called for the event to be moved because of "increasingly limited training options" for athletes
    World Athletics president Lord Coe says the Games must be postponed because they cannot be held "at all costs" and the move is "owed" to the athletes
    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has admitted for the first time that the Games could be postponed
    The IOC has given itself four weeks to decide on the future of the event.

    Options include a delay of several months or - more probably - a year. The IOC says cancellation is "not on the agenda". A "scaled-down" Games will also be considered.

    The Olympics are scheduled start in Tokyo on 24 July.


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  20. #20
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    Tokyo 2020: Olympics to be postponed until 2021, says IOC member

    The 2020 Olympic Games will be postponed by one year because of coronavirus, says International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound.

    It comes after the chairman of the British Olympic Association said Great Britain would be unlikely to send a team to Tokyo this summer.

    Australia and Canada have already said they will not compete in Japan.

    "On the basis of the information the IOC has, postponement has been decided," Pound told USA today.

    "The parametres going forward have not been determined, but the Games are not going to start on 24 July, that much I know."

    The International Olympic Committee has given itself four weeks to decide on the future of this summer's Games, but veteran IOC member Pound says a decision will be announced soon.

    "It will come in stages," he said.

    "We will postpone this and begin to deal with all the ramifications of moving this, which are immense."

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/athletics/52002474


  21. #21
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    Team USA's Olympic and Paralympic Committee called for the International Olympic Committee Summer Games in Tokyo.


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  22. #22
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    Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has asked for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics to be postponed by a year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

    Abe said he has agreed the delay with International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach following talks earlier on Tuesday.

    BBC sports editor Dan Roan says the IOC's Executive Board will approve the delay this afternoon.


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  23. #23
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    What many already saw as the only option is now official: the organisers of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games have agreed to a one-year postponement of the event because of the global coronavirus pandemic.

    Speaking to reporters on Tuesday, Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the International Olympic Committee (IOC) had agreed to the delay.

    "I proposed to postpone for about a year and [IOC] president Thomas Bach responded with 100% agreement," Abe said.
    The 2020 Olympics were set to run from 24 July to 9 August.

    "This is the first time an Olympic Games have been postponed - it has been cancelled in war time, but never postponed," said BBC sports news reporter Alex Capstick.

    "At the moment they are saying they want to hold it in the summer of 2021. It is a huge logistical challenge and problem to do that - it is not easy to postpone a Games.

    "Is the delay long enough? We just do not know at this stage."


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  24. #24
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    The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games will run from 23 July to 8 August 2021, the International Olympic Committee has announced.

    The Olympics, which had been due to start on 24 July this year, were postponed last week with no new date confirmed at the time.
    The Paralympics will start on 24 August and end on 5 September 2021.

    Tokyo 2020 will remain the name of the event despite the fact it is happening a year later.


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  25. #25
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    Tokyo Games CEO hints Olympics could be in doubt even in 2021

    TOKYO: As the coronavirus spreads in Japan, the chief executive of the Tokyo Games said Friday he can’t guarantee the postponed Olympics will be staged next year even with a 16-month delay.

    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe issued an emergency declaration this week to battle the virus, putting the country under restrictions after it seemed it had avoided the spread.

    “I don’t think anyone would be able to say if it is going to be possible to get it under control by next July or not,” Tokyo organising committee CEO Toshiro Muto said, speaking through an interpreter at a news conference conducted remotely. “We’re certainly are not in a position to give you a clear answer.”

    The Olympics were postponed last month with a new opening set for July 23, 2021, followed by the Paralympics on August 24.

    Abe has been criticised for being slow to act against the coronavirus. Opposition political leaders have suggested he downplayed the severity of the virus and have said it may have been tied to wanting to hold the Olympics this year.

    “We have made the decision to postpone the games by one year,” Muto added. “So this means that all we can do is work hard to prepare for the Games. We sincerely hope that come next year mankind will manage to overcome the coronavirus crisis.”

    Muto was asked if there are alternative plans to 2021.

    “Rather than think about alternatives plans, we should put in all of our effort,” he said. “Mankind should bring together all of its technology and wisdom to work hard so they can development tre*a*t*ments, medicines and vaccines.”

    Japan has reported about 5,000 cases and 100 deaths. The country has the world’s oldest population, and COVID-19 can be especially serious for the elderly.

    Muto was asked several times about the added costs of postponing, which has been estimated by Japanese media at between $2 billion-$6 billion. He said it was too soon to know the price tag and who would pay.

    He also acknowledged that Tokyo Olympic organisers had taken out insurance.

    “Tokyo 2020 has taken out several insurance policies,” he said. “But whether the postponement of the games qualifies as an event that is covered is not clear yet.”

    He was also asked about the Olympic flame, which was taken off public display this week in Fukushima prefecture. Muto had an away-from-the-microphone talk with Tokyo spokesman Masa Takaya before talking about the flame.

    “After the Olympic torch relay was cancelled, the Olympic flame was put under the management of Tokyo 2020,” Muto said. “Obviously in the future there is a possibility it might be put on display somewhere. However, for now it is under the management of Tokyo 2020 and Im not going to make any further comment on the issue.”

    There are suggestions the International Olympic Committee is thinking of taking the flame on a world tour, hoping to use it as a symbol of the battle against the virus. However, any tour would be impossible until travel restrictions are lifted. Taking the flame away from Japan could also upset the hosts.

    https://www.dawn.com/news/1548185/to...t-even-in-2021

  26. #26
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    A Japanese virus expert has warned the Tokyo Olympics might not be able to go ahead even by 2021. The Games were postponed to next year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    "Holding the Olympics needs two condition: controlling Covid-19 in Japan and controlling Covid-19 everywhere, because you have to invite the athletes and the audience from all over the world," Kentaro Iwata, a professor of infectious diseases at Kobe University, told journalists.

    "Japan might be able to control this disease by next summer, I wish we could, but I don't think that would happen everywhere on earth, so in this regard I'm very pessimistic about holding the Olympics Games next summer."

    The decision to postpone the event to next year was controversial and Japan for a long time insisted they would be able to go ahead this summer. Only when several countries' athletics bodies warned they wouldn't participate, Tokyo and the IOC postponed the games.

    Source BBC


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  27. #27
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    The head of the Japan Medical Association has added his voice to speculation that the Tokyo Olympics, now due to be held next summer, could again be affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

    “Unless an effective vaccine is developed I think it will be difficult to hold the Olympics next year,” JMA president Yoshitake Yokokura told reporters in Tokyo on Tuesday.

    “I’m not saying at this point that they shouldn’t be held. The outbreak is not only confined to Japan ... it’s a worldwide issue.”

    Several health experts have cast doubt on plans to hold the Games next July and August. Last week, Kentaro Iwata, a specialist in infectious diseases, said he thought it “unlikely” that the Games would be held just over a year from now.

    “I am very pessimistic about holding the Olympic Games next summer unless you hold the Olympic Games in a totally different structure such as no audience, or a very limited participation,” he said.

    Japan’s organisers and the International Olympic Committee [IOC] agreed in March to postpone the Games by a year as the coronavirus spread across the globe. They have since said there is no “Plan B’’ other than working for the Olympics to open on July 23, 2021.

    But IOC member John Coates, who is overseeing preparations of the Tokyo Olympics, said this month it was still “too early to say” if the outbreak could further impact the Games.

    Soure Guardian


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  28. #28
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    very upset with these pessimistic predictions "too early to say" etc etc. These are the same sceintist who want to shut the world down until a vaccine is found, which by the way, a vaccine has never been found for the SARs virus even after spending millions of $$$.

  29. #29
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    Tokyo 2020 Olympics will be 'scrapped' instead of delayed again, says Games chief

    The postponed Tokyo Olympics will be "scrapped" if they cannot take place in 2021, says Games chief Yoshiro Mori.

    Tokyo 2020 is now scheduled to run from 23 July to 8 August next year after being delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

    Health experts have cast doubt on whether the Games could be held next summer without a vaccine or effective drugs to treat Covid-19 being found.

    When asked if the event could be moved again to 2022, Mori replied: "No."

    "In that case, the Olympics will be scrapped," he added.

    However, the Tokyo 2020 president said he was confident the rescheduled Games would go ahead.

    "This Olympics would be much more valuable than any Olympics in the past if we could go ahead with it after winning this battle," he told Nikkan Sports.

    "We have to believe this, otherwise our hard work and efforts will not be rewarded."

    The president of Japan's medical association, Yoshitake Yokokura, said on Tuesday it will be "difficult" to hold the Olympics in 2021 without vaccines or effective drugs being developed.

    "I am not saying that Japan should or shouldn't host the Olympics, but that it would be difficult to do so," he said.

    "If the infections are under control in Japan, it will still be difficult to hold the games unless the pandemic is over in the rest of the world."

    Most experts think a vaccine is likely to become available by mid-2021, though others have warned there is no guarantee a vaccine can be successfully developed.

    Mori added that the Olympics and Paralympics - which will now run from 24 August to 5 September 2021 - could share opening and closing ceremonies as a way of cutting costs.

    "Given that the situation has dramatically changed, we have to review key areas, including the ceremonies," he said.

    "It's going to a considerable cut in costs and a big message of victory against the global crisis - but it's not easy."

    However, Mori said he had not yet asked the International Olympic Committee and International Paralympic Committee whether they would agree to such a plan, and acknowledged that tickets had already been sold for the separate opening and closing ceremonies.

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/olympics/52453435


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  30. #30
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    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has said it will be difficult to host the Olympics next year unless the pandemic is contained.

    The Olympics were originally set to be held this year but were postponed until July 2021.

    There has been doubt as to whether the games will go ahead.

    "We've been saying that the Olympic and Paralympic Games must be held in a complete form, in that athletes and spectators can all participate safely," Abe said.

    "It would be impossible to hold the games in such a complete form unless the pandemic is contained."

    He added that the Olympics "must be held in a way that shows the world has won its battle against the coronavirus pandemic. Otherwise it will be hard to hold the games."

    On Tuesday Games chief Yoshiro Mori said the Olympics would be "scrapped" if they could not take place in 2021.

    Japan has confirmed 13,895 infections and more than 413 deaths.


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  31. #31
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    A senior figure at the International Olympic Committee has reaffirmed that there are no plans to defer the Tokyo Olympics again.

    Tokyo 2020 is now scheduled to run from 23 July to 8 August in 2021 after being delayed by a year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

    John Coates, head of the IOC’s inspectorate, said the Games could end up as the "greatest ever" - citing examples that followed the two world wars of the 20th Century - but followed Tokyo Games' chief Yoshiro Mori in saying that they could not be rescheduled again.

    "We're proceeding on the basis that there is no Plan B of deferring the Games again or anything like that,” Coates said.


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  32. #32
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    BERLIN (Reuters) - The International Olympic Committee expects to bear costs of up to $800 million (656.87 million pounds) for its part in the organisation of the postponed Tokyo 2020 Olympics, now due to be staged next year, IOC President Thomas Bach said on Thursday.

    In March, the International Olympic Committee and the Japanese government decided to delay the Games, due to start this July, for a year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    “We anticipate we will have to bear costs of up to $800 million for our part and responsibilities in the organisation of the postponed Games Tokyo 2020,” Bach told a conference call at the end of the IOC’s executive board meeting.

    He said of that amount $650 million would go towards the organisation of the Games next year and $150 million to support international federations and National Olympic Committees.

    The figure announced by Bach does not include any costs Tokyo Games organisers and the Japanese government have to incur by the 12-month delay of the world’s biggest multi-sports event.

    Bach declined to speculate on a possible new delay if the virus is still a major concern next year.

    “We are now working with full engagement for the success of Tokyo 2020 in 2021 and to have these Games in a safe environment for all participants,” he said.

    “We are one year and two months away from the opening of these postponed Olympic games. We should not fuel any speculation on any future development.”

    Some four million people have been infected and close to 300,000 have died from the disease globally.

    More than 90 vaccines are currently being developed globally, with eight in the clinical trial phase. But experts say the process could take years and may not happen at all.


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  33. #33
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    The World Health Organization director general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, and the International Olympic Committee president, Thomas Bach, are holding a press conference.

    Bach is stressing the need for sport to play a crucial part in governments’ Covid-19 recovery programmes.

    “Sport is not only a very important economic factor, offering millions of jobs, it is also an extremely important social and health factor. The crisis has told us how important health is for the basis of everything we do in society. I’m really calling on governments to honour this and make sport an important part of their programmes.”


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  34. #34
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    International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach says he understands why the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Games would have to be cancelled if it cannot take place next summer.

    Local organisers have said they have no back-up plan after the event was postponed by a year because of the coronavirus crisis.

    "You cannot forever employ 3,000 to 5,000 people in an organising committee," Bach told BBC Sport. "You cannot have the athletes being in uncertainty."

    In a wide-ranging interview, Bach also:

    admitted the job of re-organising the Games was "a mammoth task"
    warned that the event would "definitely be different" with a focus on "essentials"
    would not be drawn on whether a vaccine for Covid-19 would be needed for the event to take place
    insisted staging the Games behind closed doors was "not what we want", but he needs more time to consider whether that was feasible
    Bach said he hoped the first ever postponed Games, which are due to take place from 23 July to 8 August 2021, could prove "unique" and send "a message of solidarity among the entire world, coming for the first time together again, and celebrating the triumph over coronavirus".

    "There is no blueprint for it so we have to reinvent the wheel day by day. It's very challenging and at the same time fascinating."

    2020 Olympics will be 'scrapped' instead of delayed again, says Games chief
    Will a vaccine be found?
    Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has admitted it may be "difficult" to stage the Games if the country does not successfully contain the virus, and the head of the Japan Medical Association has suggested it depends on finding a vaccine.

    When asked directly if he agreed, Bach said: "For this question, we are relying on the advice of the World Health Organisation.

    "We have established one principle: to organise these Games in a safe environment for all the participants. Nobody knows what the world will look like in one year, in two months.

    "So we have to rely on [experts] and then take the appropriate decision at the appropriate time based on this advice."

    The 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics are due to take place in China just six months after the Tokyo Games, and Bach said that Prime Minister Abe had made it clear to him that, as far as Japan was concerned, next summer was "the last option".

    "Quite frankly, I have some understanding for this, because you cannot forever employ 3,000, or 5,000, people in an Organising Committee," said Bach.

    "You cannot every year change the entire sports schedule worldwide of all the major federations. You cannot have the athletes being in uncertainty.

    "You cannot have so much overlapping with a future Olympic Games, so I have some understanding for this approach by our Japanese partners."

    When asked how confident he was that the Games would go ahead, Bach said: "We have to be prepared for different scenarios. There is the clear commitment to having these games in July next year.

    "At the same time, looking at the scenarios this may require towards the organisation, with regard to health measures, these maybe need quarantine for the athletes, for part of the athletes, for other participants.

    "What could this mean for the life in an Olympic Village and so on? All these different scenarios are under consideration and this is why I'm saying it's a mammoth task, because there are so many different options that it's not easy to address them [now]. When we have a clear view on how the world will look on 23 July, 2021, then [we will] take the appropriate decisions."

    Could the Games be staged behind closed doors?
    Thomas Bach
    IOC president Thomas Bach was speaking to the BBC in his first broadcast interview since Tokyo postponement
    If social distancing restrictions are still in force in Japan next summer, some have suggested the Games may have to be staged behind closed doors.

    Bach said such a scenario remained "speculation".

    "This is not what we want," he said. "Because the Olympic spirit is about also uniting the fans and this is what makes the Games so unique that they're in an Olympic Stadium, all the fans from all over the world are together.

    "But when it then would come to the decision... I would ask you to give me some more time for consultation with the athletes, with the World Health Organisation, with the Japanese partners."

    The IOC has set aside $800m (654m) to help with the financial impact caused by the postponement of Tokyo 2020. The total additional cost to Japan has been estimated at between two and six billion dollars.

    But Bach said there would also have to be cutbacks to the Games.

    "They will definitely be different, and they have to be different," he said. "If we all have learned something during this crisis, [it is] to look to the essentials and not so much on the nice-to-have things.

    "So this concentration on the essentials should be reflected in the organisation of these Games... there should be no taboo."

    Why were the Games not postponed sooner?
    Two months ago, Bach faced unprecedented criticism from athletes for not postponing the Games earlier.

    "The developments were so fast that you could not know what would happen tomorrow," he said when asked if he would do anything differently now.

    'To find the balance between the more optimistic experts, saying, 'wait, you still have time. It's still some months away. Let's see how it goes', and the others saying, 'this will be a total disaster - why don't you take this decision right now?' This was the challenge every day.

    "And this had to be done in consultation with our Japanese partners, because we could have cancelled the Games alone, without them, and that would have been an easy decision in one way.

    "We could have said, 'OK, this is it.' We would have got our money being paid by insurance. And we could have started to prepare for Paris [2024 Games]. But this was not a real option because this would have deprived the athletes of this unique Olympic experience."

    Bach said he was "happy" last weekend to see the Bundesliga resume in his native Germany, even though fans were not present.

    "I wish that now all the other sports are coming back," he said. "On the other hand, I was a little bit feeling for the players, how strange it must be for them, playing in these huge stadiums...

    "So I hope now that is the first step. Sport has to respect the rules, like any other organisation and area of society. But that slowly, we can come back and then maybe lift these restrictions in a responsible way."

    Bach appealed to governments around the world to do what they can to help sports deal with the financial crisis caused by the pandemic.

    "There is, first of all, the contribution of sport to health, and everybody realises that we must concentrate more on health in in the in the future," he said.

    "Secondly, sport makes the great contribution to the inclusivity of society... sport is the best glue for a society.

    "And thirdly, sport is also a very important economic factor. We had a study that about 3% of all the jobs being offered in Europe are sports-related.

    "And this is why we are urging the governments to honour and to acknowledge the role of sport, and to include them in their recovery programmes."

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/olympics/52747797


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  35. #35
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    Japan to explore 'simplified' Olympic Games: Tokyo governor

    Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike said on Thursday it may be necessary to a stage a "simplified" Olympics next year due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and that organisers were already discussing possible changes.

    "Holding the Olympic and Paralympic Games calls for sympathy and understanding of Tokyoites and the Japanese people," Koike told reporters.

    Koike's comments come after the Yomiuri newspaper reported that various options, such as mandatory coronavirus testing and having fewer spectators, were being considered by organisers.

    John Coates, the head of the International Olympic Committee's (IOC) inspectorate for Tokyo, has said a lack of a defence against the new coronavirus threatened the games and organisers had to start planning for what could be a "very different" Olympics if there were no signs of COVID-19 being eradicated.


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  36. #36
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    The Tokyo 2020 Games "will take place in 2021 or they won't take place" at all, a top Olympics official has said.

    "It's unthinkable to keep such a project on the go for any longer, considering the enormous costs and all the thousands of people involved, " said Pierre-Olivier Beckers-Vieujant, a senior member of the International Olympic Committee.

    "All the sporting federations have to adapt to the Games' postponement... we can't envisage a similar upheaval a second time," the Belgian told a local newspaper.

    His comments echo a recent statement from committee president Thomas Bach, who said the Games would have to be cancelled if they cannot take place next summer.

    It comes as Tokyo's governor said the city and organisers were looking at ways to scale back next year's Games.


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  37. #37
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    Tokyo Olympics will be 'simplified'

    Tokyo 2020 chief executive Toshiro Muto has said the rearranged Olympics will "not be done with grand splendour", but will be simplified.

    The Games, originally scheduled to start next month, were postponed for a year in March because of the pandemic.

    Speaking after an executive board meeting for the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Muto added that more than 200 areas had been identified "where Olympics simplification was possible" but that "we are not at the stage where we have concrete ideas on how to simplify the Games".


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  38. #38
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    Tokyo Olympic board member would support another delay

    An executive board member of the Tokyo Olympic organising committee says another delay should be sought if the games can't be held next year.

    The Tokyo Olympics were to be held this year but were postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic. The suggestion comes from Haruyuki Takahashi in an interview published in the Japanese sports newspaper Nikkan Sports.

    "The main priority is to make a united effort to hold them (Olympics) in the summer of


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  39. #39
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    No Tokyo Olympics likely means no Winter Olympics either'

    If the postponed Tokyo Olympics do not go ahead next year due to the virus then the 2022 Beijing Winter Games is also unlikely to go ahead, International Olympic Committee Member Dick Pound said.

    “Taking the political side out of it for the moment say there is a Covid problem in July and August next year in Tokyo, it is hard to imagine there is not going to be a knock-on effect in the same area five months later,” Pound told Reuters in a phone interview.

    The Tokyo Summer Games are now set to be held in July - August 2021, while the Beijing Winter Games are scheduled for Feb 2022.

    However, the IOC said earlier that it was "fully committed" to the Tokyo Games and had "multiple scenarios" prepared for them to take place safely.


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  40. #40
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    Tokyo Games organisers prepare for one-year countdown

    The organisers of the Tokyo Olympic Games are preparing a day of celebrations to mark a year to the start of the Games, which are now due to be held in July 2021 after a year-long delay because of the coronavirus.

    The postponement has raised concerns about cost, as well as the safety of athletes and spectators; a recent poll conducted by Kyodo News found that fewer than one in four favoured holding the Games as scheduled next year.

    One-third believed the Olympics should be postponed again and another third wanted the Games cancelled outright.


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  41. #41
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    The Tokyo Olympics will not be able to take place next summer unless a COVID-19 vaccine is found, a leading Japanese vaccine researcher has told Sky News.

    Professor Yoshiharu Matsuura, from the Research Foundation for Microbial Disease of Osaka University, told Sky News: "In Japan, the government is putting a large emphasis on vaccine development and a medicine for the virus because of the Olympics.

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    "They want to push ahead with the Olympics next year and they are saying the only way for that to happen is the vaccine."

    The foundation, also referred to as the BIKEN Foundation, is developing a COVID-19 vaccine which is in the pre-clinical trial stage.

    Japan has strict rules around developing vaccines, which means progress has been slower.


    "Japan is really lagging behind in the race but the pharmaceutical companies, universities and vaccine manufacturers have gotten large funding from the government and proper work started about a month ago," Prof Matsuura said.

    But Prof Matsuura is alarmed at the pace of vaccine development globally.

    "The safety of the vaccine needs time to prove itself. A regular vaccine development takes 10 years and they are saying to do it in a year. This is scary," he said.

    "So it's really warp speed, super express train. I find it slightly unnerving.

    "I really think healthy people shouldn't take the vaccine."

    Prof Matsuura is worried that if a rushed vaccine goes wrong, the antibodies it produces could end up making the coronavirus stronger instead of protecting against it.

    It's a phenomenon called antibody dependent enhancement, or ADE, although there is no evidence yet for it in COVID-19.

    Japan has handled the coronavirus pandemic relatively well, despite a large number of cases early in the year, mainly because of the Diamond Princess cruise ship.

    It has recorded 1,093 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University, but cases have been increasing recently.

    The 2020 Summer Olympics were originally due to begin in July this year but were postponed until next summer because of the pandemic.

    Even if a vaccine is available globally, Prof Matsuura thinks that Japan will still have to develop its own vaccine.

    "Vaccines are actually a part of national defence and it is a given that the vaccines are manufactured locally," he said.

    "So even if someone somewhere in the world achieves success with the development, that vaccine wouldn't reach Japan for a long time so it is a basic necessity that we prepare our own vaccines."

    https://news.sky.com/story/coronavir...-says-12050250


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  42. #42
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    The postponed Tokyo Olympic Games will go ahead next year "with or without Covid", the vice-president of the International Olympic Committee says.

    John Coates confirmed to news agency AFP that the Olympics would start on 23 July next year, calling them the "Games that conquered Covid".

    They were originally scheduled to start in July 2020, but were postponed due to Covid-19 fears.

    The IOC had earlier said they would not delay the Games beyond 2021.

    "The Games were going to be their theme, the Reconstruction Games after the devastation of the tsunami," Mr Coates told AFP, referring to 2011 catastrophic earthquake and tsunami in Japan.

    "Now very much these will be the Games that conquered Covid, the light at the end of the tunnel."

    In July, Tokyo 2020 chief executive Toshiro Muto said it was possible that the Games be held to a "limited" audience, but said they wanted to avoid the possibility of having no spectators at all.

    Tokyo 2020 may have 'limited spectators'
    Instead, he added that the Games could potentially "simplify" its opening and closing ceremonies, as well as reduce the number of staff and delegations from each country.

    More than 11,000 athletes from around 200 countries were scheduled to take part in the 2020 Games. It is not clear how travel restrictions might impact their participation as Japan's borders are currently largely closed to foreign visitors.

    Mr Muto also said a vaccine was not a prerequisite for the Games, though health experts had cast doubt over whether the Games could be held without a vaccine.

    "If a vaccine is ready, that will be a benefit, but we're not saying we can't hold the event without it - it's not a precondition," he said.

    In April, Games chief Yoshiro Mori said the Tokyo Games would have to be cancelled if there were not held in 2021.

    Bach 'would understand Tokyo cancellation'
    Explaining this decision, IOC President Thomas Bach said: "You cannot forever employ 3,000 to 5,000 people in an organising committee. You cannot every year change the entire sports schedule worldwide of all the major federations."

    Before the pandemic, the Games had only ever been cancelled because of war, but never postponed.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-54052669


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  43. #43
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    Fans will be able to attend the Tokyo Olympics next year under plans to vaccinate spectators and athletes upon their arrival in Japan, the head of the organising committee has said.

    International Olympic Committee (IOC) chief Thomas Bach has said he is working on the proposed safety measure, which would allow the event to take place despite a surge in coronavirus infections around the world.


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  44. #44
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    Cost of Tokyo Olympics delay due to pandemic put at 'about $2bn'

    The cost of the one-year postponement of the Tokyo Olympics is estimated to be just under $2bn (1.5bn), or about 200 billion yen.

    Japan's Kyodo news agency and the Yomiuri newspaper both reported the figure on Sunday, citing unnamed sources close to organisers.

    The organisers, the Tokyo metro government and the Japanese national government are expected to report next month how the costs will be shared.

    The official cost of putting on the Tokyo Olympics is $12.6bn (9.4bn). However, a government audit last year said it was probably twice that much. All but $5.6bn (4.2bn) is public money. Tokyo said the games would cost $7.3 bn when it won the bid in 2013.

    The IOC and organisers have been campaigning over the last several months to convince sponsors and a sceptical Japanese public that the Olympics can be held safely in the middle of a pandemic.

    IOC President Thomas Bach, who was in Tokyo earlier this month, has said a vaccine and improved rapid testing would help pull off the Olympics. But he cautioned they are not “silver bullets.”

    The Olympics are due to open on 12 July, 2021, followed by the Paralympics on 24 August.

    They will involve around 15,400 athletes and tens of thousands of officials, judges, staff, VIPs, sponsors as well as media and broadcasters.


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  45. #45
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    Tokyo 2020: Games organisers see budget increase for delayed event

    Organisers of the delayed Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games will spend $900m (670m) on measures to stop the spread of coronavirus at next year's events.

    The final budget means the Games will cost $15.9bn (11.8bn) - up $2.8bn (2.1bn) from figures last year.

    It could make the Tokyo Games the most expensive summer Olympics in history.

    "Whether you see this budget as expensive or not depends on how you look at it," said Tokyo 2020 chief executive Toshiro Muto.

    "You can look at it from a cost perspective or an investment perspective. If you look at it purely in terms of cost, it doesn't make sense.

    "But if you look at it as a positive investment, I think there are areas where it can be identified as such."

    The coronavirus plans include the creation of an infection control centre in the Olympic and Paralympic Village, as well as plans to regularly test athletes and ban cheering in venues.

    A poll last week by national broadcaster NHK showed that the majority of the Japanese general public oppose holding the Games next year, favouring a further delay or outright cancellation of the event.

    But organisers insist the Games can be held, and have ruled out another delay.

    Games elements, including athlete welcome ceremonies, have been scrapped in a bid to save money and the "look" of the event will also be scaled back.

    But the savings, plus extra revenue from sponsors, have been cancelled out by extra costs including rebooking venues and transport to retaining the huge organising committee staff.

    Organisers increased the service budget of the Games to $7.1bn (5.3m), with extra money allotted for the opening and closing ceremonies.

    However, the International Olympic Committee has agreed to cover the costs of moving the marathon and race-walking to northern Sapporo to beat Tokyo's summer heat.

    "We are trying to hold a global event during a pandemic, and if we are able to do that, it would mean that we can co-exist with Covid-19," added Muto.

    "We would be able to provide a model for living with the virus, and I think in that sense this event can be a meaningful one."

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/olympics/55408473


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  46. #46
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    Tokyo 2020: Olympics and Paralympics will go ahead, says Japan's PM amid rising infections

    The delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics will go ahead this summer despite concern over rising coronavirus cases, says Japan's prime minister.

    The Olympics are due to begin on 23 July with the Paralympics following a month later from 24 August.

    Cases have surged in Japan in recent days with Tokyo reporting over 1,000 daily infections for the first time.

    But prime minister Yoshihide Suga said the "Games will be held this summer" and be "safe and secure".

    Japan is responding to cases of the new variant of coronavirus first found in the UK, with Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike warning the number of infections could "explode".

    There were a record 1,337 cases in Tokyo on 31 December with 783 new infections announced on Friday.

    Japan has recorded 239,041 coronavirus cases and 3,337 deaths during the pandemic, according to Johns Hopkins University.

    Costs for the Games have increased by $2.8bn (2.1bn) because of measures needed to prevent the spread of coronavirus but organisers have ruled out a delay.

    The Games could be the most expensive summer Olympics in history.

    A poll by national broadcaster NHK showed that the majority of the Japanese general public oppose holding the Games in 2021, favouring a further delay or outright cancellation of the event.

    Suga said the Games going ahead could serve as a "symbol of global solidarity".

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/olympics/55506388


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  47. #47
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    The former chief executive of the London 2012 Olympics believes that it is “unlikely” that the Tokyo Games will take place this summer due to the Covid-19 pandemic


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    Tokyo 2020 Olympics: Vaccine rollout will help us stage rescheduled event, says chief executive

    Olympic organizers hope the Covid-19 vaccine will mean the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Games can take place in July - despite a newspaper report on Friday casting doubt on their going ahead.

    An unnamed government official was quoted in the Times stating it would be "too difficult" to hold the event.

    Tokyo 2020 chief executive Toshiro Muto said: "There's no doubt [widespread vaccinations in the US and Europe] will have a positive effect.

    "But it doesn't solve everything."

    He told Reuters: "We are hopeful about the vaccines but, at the same time, I think it is inappropriate to be totally dependent on it."

    Muto's interview with the news agency occurred before the Times report was published.

    In response to that article, Tokyo 2020 organizers released a statement declaring that Japan's prime minister Yoshihide Suga had "expressed his determination" to hold the Olympics and Paralympics and that all stakeholders remained focused on delivering the event.

    Pessimism over the Games' staging this year has been growing in recent weeks.

    International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound said on 7 January there could be no guarantee the Games would go ahead and last week Sir Keith Mills, chief executive of London 2012, said he thought it was "unlikely" the competition would take place. In Japan, a recent Kyodo News poll found that 80% of the population surveyed wanted the Olympics to be either canceled or postponed again.

    Muto added: "As vaccinations are conducted to some extent, I expect public opinion will get generally relieved. And I think there is a possibility that it makes it easier to hold the Games.

    "It is natural that people would be very worried about it. But we hope the situation will definitely be improved and under such a situation, I think public opinion will be improved as well."

    The Games chief added that, unlike at tennis' Australian Open, athletes would not be asked to quarantine on arrival in Japan.

  49. #49
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  50. #50
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    Let's face it besides the Athletics, there is very little worth watching. And even Athletics is drug fuelled rubbish where 99% are on peds

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bewal Express View Post
    Let's face it besides the Athletics, there is very little worth watching. And even Athletics is drug fuelled rubbish where 99% are on peds
    Maybe for you.

    I watch Athletics, Boxing, all martial arts, hockey, rowing etc.

    Good to know this is will take place. I'd love to be there but not sure they will allow us Brits to enter their land.


    Lions don't lose sleep over the opinions of Sheep

  52. #52
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    Former Olympic athlete Hashimoto chosen as head of Tokyo 2020 organisers

    TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese athlete-turned-politician Seiko Hashimoto has been chosen as president of the Tokyo 2020 Organising committee, replacing a man who resigned after setting off a furore with sexist remarks.

    Hashimoto, who competed in seven Summer and Winter Olympics as a cyclist and a skater, now faces a raft of tough issues at the helm of one of the world’s biggest sporting events with less than half a year before its delayed start.

    She must ensure athletes and officials are kept safe from the coronavirus, while also facing strong public opposition to the Games being held amid the pandemic.

    Hashimoto announced her selection shortly after submitting her resignation as Olympics minister to Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, who encouraged her to make the Games successful.

    “As someone with an athletic background, I will carry out a safe Games for both athletes and citizens,” she told a news conference.

    She replaces Yoshiro Mori, an 83-year-old former prime minister, who resigned as Tokyo 2020 president last week after saying women talk too much.

    Her appointment was welcomed by the International Olympic Committee which had not demanded Mori’s resignation and had initially considered the case closed after his first apology and refusal to step down.

    “With her great Olympic experience....and having led Japan’s delegation to the Olympic Games multiple times, she is the perfect choice for this position,” IOC President Thomas Bach said in a statement.

    “Seiko Hashimoto can draw on her rich political experience as a Minister and many other political functions. This will help to deliver safe and successful Olympic and Paralympic Games.”

    Opinion polls have repeatedly shown that more than 80 percent of Japanese do not believe the Games should be held this year due to the pandemic - a concern Hashimoto pledged to address for both ordinary citizens and athletes.

    “I can imagine how tough it is for athletes with so many questions about whether they should even aim for the Olympics and Paralympics amid the pandemic,” she said.

    A 56-year-old lawmaker in Japan’s ruling party, Hashimoto served as the Olympics minister, doubling as minister for women’s empowerment, since 2019 until resigning on Thursday.

    She was born days before Japan hosted the 1964 summer Games and her name comes from a Chinese character used for the Olympic flame. She lived up to it by taking part in four Winter Olympics as a speed skater and three Summer Olympics as a cyclist.

    However, Hashimoto has faced scrutiny over reports that she made unwanted advances to a sportsman at a party during the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014.

    A magazine at the time published photographs of her kissing popular ice skater Daisuke Takahashi. She said then that athletes often hug and kiss each other and she regretted if this had caused any misunderstanding. Takahashi never made any complaint.

    Questioned about the incident on Thursday after it was raised again on social media, she said: “Both then and now, I deeply regret my careless behaviour.”

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-o...-idUSKBN2AI04S


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

  53. #53
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    Japan to stage Olympic and Paralympic games 'without overseas spectators'

    Overseas spectators will not be allowed at this summer's Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic games, it has been reported.

    The games have already been postponed for a year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and organisers were hopeful international visitors would be able to attend.

    However the Japanese government has said welcoming fans from abroad would not be possible given public concern about the coronavirus and the spread of variants from other countries, the Kyodo news agency said.

    The opening ceremony of the torch relay would also be held without spectators, the agency added.

    Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto had said she wanted a decision on whether to let in overseas spectators before the start of the torch relay on March 25.

    "We would really like people from around the world to come to a full stadium, but unless we are prepared to accept them and the medical situation in Japan is perfect, it will cause a great deal of trouble also to visitors from overseas," Ms Hashimoto told reporters last week.

    The Olympics are being held from 23 July to 8 Aug and the Paralympics from 25 August to 5 September.

    https://news.sky.com/story/japan-to-...ators-12240840


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

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    Tokyo 2020: China offers Covid vaccine doses for Olympic and Paralympic athletes

    The Chinese Olympic Committee has offered Covid vaccine doses for those competing at the summer Games and at the 2022 winter Games in Beijing.

    The news was delivered by International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach, who on Wednesday reiterated that the delayed Tokyo 2020 will start on 23 July.

    "The IOC will pay for these additional doses of vaccines for the Olympic and Paralympic team," he added.

    The Winter Olympics start in February.

    Bach added: "For each of these doses, the IOC will pay for two doses more which can be made available to the population in the respective countries."

    Meanwhile, Sarah Hirshland, United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee chief executive, said Team USA athletes could be vaccinated before their respective trials because of the pace of the rollout in the country.

    "The broad base of athletes may have access to the vaccine sooner than we thought initially possible," she said.

    "This is great news and we're feeling really positive about the progress we're seeing here in the United States, both in its advantage to US athletes as well as international athletes living and training in our country right now."

    https://www.bbc.com/sport/olympics/56359057


    Arsenal all the way!! (and Pakistan, of course!)

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    No international fans will be permitted at the delayed 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics this summer because of concerns over the coronavirus pandemic, organisers say.

    Japanese authorities told the Olympic and Paralympic committees it was "highly unlikely that entry" to the country could be guaranteed.

    Organisers said the move would help ensure "a safe and secure Games for all participants and the Japanese public".

    The Games are due to begin on 23 July.


    For the latest updates on Cricket, follow @PakPassion on Twitter

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    North Korea has announced it will not take part in the Tokyo Olympics this year, saying the decision is to protect its athletes from Covid-19.

    The decision puts an end to South Korea's hopes of using the Games to engage with the North amid stalled cross-border talks.

    In 2018, both sides entered a joint team at the Winter Olympics which led to a series of historic summits.

    Pyongyang says it has no cases of the virus but experts say this is unlikely.

    The announcement makes North Korea the first major country to skip the delayed 2020 Games because of the pandemic. The event is due to begin on 23 July.

    This will be the first time North Korea misses a Summer Olympics since 1988, when it it boycotted the Seoul games during the Cold War.

    Hopes dashed

    The decision was made at a Olympic committee meeting on 25 March, according to a report by the state-run site Sports in the DPRK.

    North Korea has taken stringent measures against the virus since it broke out last year.

    It shut off its borders in late January and later quarantined hundreds of foreigners in its capital.

    Since early last year, trains and wagons have been forbidden to enter or leave North Korea, with most international passenger flights stopped as well.

    There were hopes by South Korea's President Moon Jae-in that the games could be a catalyst for progress between both Koreas.

    That had been the case in 2018, when North Korea sent 22 athletes to the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, along with government officials, journalists and a 230-member cheering group.

    Among the contingent was North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's sister Kim Yo-jong - a move which helped it initiate diplomacy with South Korea and the US.

    BBC


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