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TOKYO 2020 Olympics

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  • TOKYO 2020 Olympics

    July 24th – August 9th (maybe):

    The Olympic Torch Relay kicks off 26 March in Fukushima (maybe):

    • Abe insists Olympics to go ahead as planned despite Covid-19

    Japan’s prime minister says country will host Games ‘without problem, as planned’

    Japan is still preparing to host the Olympics, Shinzo Abe has said, despite growing concern about the viability of the summer Games because of the coronavirus outbreak.

    Japan’s prime minister and his government have been adamant that the Olympics will go ahead, even as other global sporting events have been put on hold. Speculation about a delay of the July start date has grown since Donald Trump said organisers should consider a one-year postponement.

    He said Japan was working closely with the International Olympic Committee, which will have the final say on whether the Games go ahead, and the World Health Organization, suggesting he accepted that the ultimate decision did not rest with Tokyo.

    He also said Japan had a relatively low coronavirus infection rate and had not experienced an explosion in cases as South Korea, China, Italy and Iran had. He said delaying the peak of infections was vital to ensure treatment of those in critical condition.

    Abe said Japan did not need to declare a national emergency, although parliament approved a bill on Friday to give him emergency powers and allow him to close schools, halt large gatherings and requisition medical supplies.

    The Tokyo governor, Yuriko Koike, promised thorough measures against the coronavirus outbreak and said preparations for a safe and secure Games were progressing.

    Greece’s Olympic Committee cancelled the remainder of the torch relay through the country on Friday to avoid attracting crowds. The relay through Japan is scheduled to start on 26 March.:
    Keep your friends close and your enemies closer

  • #2
    ...I admire his confidence...


    • #3
      • Flame Arrives in Tokyo Amid Rising Concern Olympics Be Delayed

      The Olympic flame from Greece is set to arrive in Japan even as the opening of the Tokyo Games in four months is in doubt with more voices suggesting the event should be postponed or canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic.

      The flame touches down Friday aboard a white aircraft painted with the inscription "Tokyo 2020 Olympic Torch Relay" along its side, and "Hope Lights Our Way" stenciled near the tail section.

      Everything about the arrival ceremony at the Matsushima air base in northern Japan will be subdued. The flame is to be greeted by a few dignitaries, saluted by a flyover from an aerial acrobatic team — if weather permits — and then used to ignite a cauldron.

      The burning vessel will be displayed in three northern prefectures before the official relay begins on March 26 from Fukushima prefecture, which was devastated nine years ago by an earthquake, tsunami and the meltdown of three nuclear reactors.:
      • Olympic Committee board member calls for postponement of Tokyo games

      Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) board member Kaori Yamaguchi has called for the Tokyo Olympics to be postponed because athletes are unable to prepare adequately as a result of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, she told the Nikkei newspaper.

      Yamaguchi, who won a Judo bronze medal at the Seoul Olympic Games in 1988, said she plans to raise this point at a JOC Board Meeting scheduled for March 27.

      "The Olympics should not be held in a situation people in the world can’t enjoy," Yamaguchi said.: -
      Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


      • #4, little regard for the athletes, admin and spectators then: the show must go on!...


        • #5
          • Summer Olympics In Tokyo Should Be Postponed To 2021, USA Swimming Says

          The head of USA Swimming is calling for the upcoming Tokyo Summer Olympics to be postponed until next year, citing disruptions the COVID-19 global pandemic has forced onto athletes' lives as well as their training and competition schedules.

          USA Swimming CEO Tim Hinchey made the request in a letter sent to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, saying he felt "compelled" to ask for a delay in one of the world's largest sporting events. It's the most prominent such call yet in the U.S., coming from one of the country's most successful sporting federations — and one whose athletes make up a large chunk of the U.S. Olympic team.

          On Friday, USA Swimming said it's time for the Olympics to follow suit, calling a postponement "the right and responsible thing to do."

          Citing the stress, pressure and anxiety that the COVID-19 pandemic has brought to USA Swimming's athletes, Hinchey said, "It is with the burden of these serious concerns that we respectfully request that the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee advocate for the postponement of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 by one year."

          In sending the message, USA Swimming is channeling the frustrations many current and former athletes have felt in watching International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach and other leaders refuse to discuss any contingency plans for how the Olympics might adapt to the pandemic.

          With the Summer Olympics set to begin in four months, the Olympic flame landed in Japan today.:

          The flame was transported by a special aircraft “Tokyo 2020 Go” from Athens, Greece, and arrived at Japan Air Self-Defence Force (JASDF) Matsushima Air Base in Miyagi Prefecture shortly before 10am local time.

          The flame was originally lit in front of the ruins of the Temple of Hera in Ancient Olympia on 12 March, and after its week-long stay in Greece was handed over to Tokyo at a ceremony at the Panathenaic Stadium in Athens.

          As the “Tokyo 2020 Go” aircraft descended, Tokyo 2020 officials waited in eager anticipation to welcome the arrival of the Olympic Flame in Japan soil.

          When the aircraft doors finally opened, triple judo gold medallist NOMURA Tadahiro and triple wrestling gold medallist YOSHIDA Saori held the lantern aloft before it was handed to President of Tokyo 2020 MORI Yoshiro, who was accompanied by Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC) President YAMASHITA Yasuhiro.

          A symphony orchestra from the JASDF played a live rendition of the “Tokyo Olympic March” - symbolically the same music used at the opening ceremony of Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games.: -
          Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


          • #6
            • U.S. Olympic Committee says more 'clarity' needed for decision on 2020 games

            The committee responded to a postponement request by USA Swimming, whose CEO said, "Everyone has experienced unimaginable disruptions, mere months before the Olympic Games."

            Two major sports governing bodies in the United States have asked for the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games to be postponed amid the growing coronavirus pandemic.

            USA Swimming and USA Track and Field's chiefs both sent letters to the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee sharing their concerns about athletes and asking for the games, which are due begin in July, to be postponed.

            But U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee CEO Sarah Hirshland said in a statement that more clarity is needed before making such a decision.

            "The USOPC has complete and total empathy for the athlete community as they manage the terrible stress and anxiety caused by the current lack of certitude regarding the Tokyo Games," Hirshland wrote. "We understand that the athletes have concerns about training, qualification and anti-doping controls, and that they want transparency, communication and clarity to the full extent possible."

            Hirshland said that the committee has also heard from some athletes who want to make sure their opportunity to compete in the games isn't prematurely taken away "until we have better clarity."

            She said that the U.S. committee is in communication with the International Olympic Committee and the International Paralympic Committee and has been following advice from the World Health Organization.

            "They believe that it is premature to make a final call on the date of the Games, and we believe that we should afford them the opportunity to gather more data and expert advice before insisting that a decision be made," the statement read.

            Her response came after USA Swimming CEO Tim Hinchey asked for the games to be postponed by a year. In a letter posted Friday on Twitter, he said he has watched athletes "struggle to find ways to continue to prepare and train" as the virus spreads across the globe.

            "Our top priority at Olympic Swimming has been, and will continue to be, the health and safety of our athletes, coaches, staff, volunteers and other members," Hinchey wrote.

            "Pressing forward amidst the global health crisis this summer is not the answer," he wrote, adding that making everyone's health and safety a priority is the "responsible thing to do."

            "Everyone has experienced unimaginable disruptions, mere months before the Olympic Games, which calls into question the authenticity of a level playing field for all," he continued.

            USA Track and Field CEO Max Siegel expressed similar concerns, telling Hirshland in a letter also posted on Twitter that it's hard for athletes to find a safe environment for training. He said moving forward with the Olympics in July "would not be in the best interest of our athletes."

            "We acknowledge that there are no perfect answers, and that this is a very complex and difficult decision, but this position at least provides our athletes with the comfort of knowing that they have adequate time to properly prepare themselves physically, mentally, and emotionally to be able to participate in a safe and successful Olympic Games, and that they can shift their focus toward taking care of themselves and their families," he wrote.

            The 2020 Tokyo Games are scheduled to begin July 24. The Olympic Flame arrived in Japan on Friday.:
            • Exclusive: Tokyo organizers quietly plan for potential Olympic delay, sources say

            Tokyo 2020 organizers have started drafting possible alternatives to holding the Olympics this summer, two sources familiar with the talks said, in contrast to the Japanese government's stance that postponement is not an option.

            While the coronavirus outbreak has disrupted sports events around the world, Japan has been steadfast in saying that the Games will go on. The top government spokesman on Wednesday said Tokyo wasn't preparing for postponement.

            Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has staked his legacy as Japan's longest-serving premier on the Games and is hoping for a boom in tourism and consumer spending. At risk is more than $3 billion in domestic sponsorship, an Olympic record, and some $12 billion spent on preparations.

            "Finally, we have been asked to make a simulation in case of a postponement," said one of the sources, an official close to the organizing committee who is involved in drafting the scenarios.

            Both sources spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

            "We are making alternative plans - plan B, C, D - looking at different postponement time-frames," said the official, adding the scenarios included cost estimates for different delays.

            Neither Tokyo 2020 organizers nor the International Olympic Committee (IOC) immediately responded to a request for comment. The government of Japan could not be reached for comment.:
            Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


            • #7
              • Thousands flock to see Olympic flame in Japan despite virus fears

              Tens of thousands of people flocked to a cauldron with the Olympic flame in northeastern Japan over the weekend despite concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.

              The flame arrived in Japan to a scaled-down welcoming ceremony on Friday as doubts grew over whether the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will go ahead on schedule as the deadly virus causes chaos around the world.

              The pandemic has already shredded the global sports calendar, with top sports leagues suspended and major tournaments postponed.

              More than 50,000 people on Saturday queued to watch the flame displayed at Sendai station in Miyagi, chosen as part of the “Recovery Olympics” to showcase the region’s revival after the 2011 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdown.

              Some had to stay in a 500-metre (1,650-foot) queue for several hours, local media said.

              Many of them wore masks as they took pictures with the cherry blossom-shaped cauldron.

              “I queued for three hours but watching the Olympic flame was greatly encouraging,” a 70-year-old woman told public broadcaster NHK.

              But organisers, concerned about the bigger-than-expected gathering, have warned the viewing event could be suspended if a crowd becomes “extremely dense”, local media reported.

              The nationwide torch relay begins on March 26, starting from the J-Village sports complex in Fukushima that was used as a base for workers during the 2011 nuclear disaster.: -
              Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


              • #8
                • Canada, Australia pulling out of Olympics because of coronavirus

                "This is not solely about athlete health — this is about public health," the Canadian Olympic Committee said.

                Canada and Australia will not send athletes to the Summer Olympic Games this year if the games aren't delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic, officials said Sunday.

                In a statement, the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Committee said it was "urgently" calling on the organizations that organize the games to postpone the event for one year. "This is not solely about athlete health — this is about public health," the group said.

                In Australia, the country's Olympic Committee also unanimously agreed that its team couldn't be assembled with the virus continuing to spread around the planet.

                Earlier Sunday, the International Olympic Committee said it was still evaluating whether the games, scheduled to begin July 24 in Tokyo, would go forward as planned.

                "A decision about a postponement today could not determine a new date for the Olympic Games because of the uncertain developments in both directions," the committee's president, Thomas Bach, wrote Sunday. "An improvement, as we are seeing in a number of countries thanks to the severe measures being taken, or a deteriorating situation in other countries.":
                • The International Olympic Committee Is Finally Admitting It May Need To Postpone The 2020 Games

                Postponement is now one of a number of scenarios under consideration — but the IOC says it is not canceling the Tokyo Olympics.

                The International Olympic Committee acknowledged for the first time on Sunday that it may need to postpone the summer games, scheduled to bring 15,000 athletes from around the world to Tokyo in July, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

                The International Olympic Committee's Executive Board announced on Sunday that it "will step up its scenario-planning for the Olympic Games" in Tokyo this summer due to the rapidly escalating global crisis surrounding COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. As of Sunday, more than 300,000 people cases were reported worldwide, more than 14,000 people had died, and a growing number of governments were grappling with lockdowns and stay-at-home orders.

                In a press release, the IOC said they are asking for cooperation from Tokyo's organizing committee, the Japanese government, as well as a list of high-stake contracts, brand sponsorships, and stakeholders to "start detailed discussions ... including the scenario of postponement."

                The committee, however, has completely taken cancelling the global event entirely off the table.

                "A cancellation of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 would not solve any of the problems or help anybody," the release stated. "Therefore, cancellation is not on the agenda."

                While the IOC detailed all of the complicated, unknown circumstances they're working with, the organization didn't state what specific measures to "step up scenario-planning" it will be taking.

                Its announcement does lay out the different scenarios they're currently working to address.

                "On the one hand, there are significant improvements in Japan where the people are warmly welcoming the Olympic flame," it read. "This could strengthen the IOC’s confidence in the Japanese hosts that the IOC could, with certain safety restrictions, organise Olympic Games in the country whilst respecting its principle of safeguarding the health of everyone involved."

                "On the other hand, there is a dramatic increase in cases and new outbreaks of COVID-19 in different countries on different continents," it went on. "This led the EB to the conclusion that the IOC needs to take the next step in its scenario-planning."

                The committee said they are confident they will come to a consensus in the next four weeks.:
                • Tokyo Olympics seem sure to happen -- but in 2021, not 2020

                TOKYO -- The Tokyo Olympics are going to happen — but almost surely in 2021 rather than in four months as planned.

                This became clear after the IOC on Sunday announced it was considering a postponement and would make a final decision within four weeks.:
                Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


                • #9
                  • Olympics Committee member says games will be postponed this year

                  The 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games will be postponed amid the coronavirus pandemic, a committee member told USA Today in an interview Monday.

                  “On the basis of the information the IOC has, postponement has been decided,” veteran International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound told the newspaper. “The parameters going forward have not been determined, but the Games are not going to start on July 24, that much I know.”

                  The IOC will announce its next steps soon, said Pound, a Canadian former swimming champion.

                  “We will postpone this and begin to deal with all the ramifications of moving this, which are immense,” he told USA Today.

                  The Olympic Committee has faced growing calls to postpone the summer games, including from Global Athlete, which represents Olympic hopefuls, and USA Swimming and USA Track & Field.

                  Australia and Canada had already announced they would not compete in the Tokyo Games if they took place as originally scheduled.

                  The IOC said Sunday that officials were considering postponing the games, but they have repeatedly insisted the event will not be canceled.

                  “The IOC [executive board] emphasized that a cancellation of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 would not solve any of the problems or help anybody. Therefore, cancellation is not on the agenda,” the committee said Sunday.

                  Large gatherings — including other sporting events across the globe — have been canceled over the coronavirus, which has infected more than 367,000 people globally, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.:
                  Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


                  • #10
                    Canada leads the way...

                    "The true north strong and free"...


                    • #11
                      • Coronavirus: Other times the Olympics have been postponed or canceled

                      With the coronavirus reportedly postponing the 2020 Summer Olympic, here's a look at other times they have been interrupted

                      International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound told USA Today on Monday that the 2020 Tokyo Games will likely be pushed back to 2021 due to the coronavirus pandemic. With the games just a few months away and not enough progress made with tackling the outbreak, this was a long time coming, especially after Canada and Australia both announced they would not be sending their athletes to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

                      "On the basis of the information the IOC has, postponement has been decided," Pound said. "The parameters going forward have not been determined, but the Games are not going to start on July 24, that much I know... We will postpone this and begin to deal with all the ramifications of moving this, which are immense."

                      The Olympics are of course a major production to put on. Athletes, fans, broadcasters and workers come from all over the world for the event. The Olympics have been interrupted before, but rarely have they been postponed or canceled. Here's a look at those occasions.

                      1916 Summer Olympics
                      These games were canceled because of World War I. They were scheduled to be held in Berlin. The war began in 1914 and lasted until the winter of 1918. Berlin eventually got to host the Summer Games in 1936, which were the last games to be played before the start of World War II.

                      The 1940 Summer and Winter Olympics
                      Both were called off due to World War II. The summer games were scheduled to take place in Tokyo. They were rescheduled for Helsinki, Finland, but then eventually canceled altogether. The Winter Olympics were set for Sapporo, Japan but moved because of the outbreak of the Second Sino-Japanese War in 1937. They were eventually set to take place in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany but the second world war caused the cancellation of the games entirely.

                      The 1944 Summer and Winter Olympics
                      World War II lasted long enough that is also caused the cancellation of the 1944 Games. London won the bid for the Summer Games, while Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy was awarded the Winter Games. Neither got to host in that elected year due to the war. Cortina d'Ampezzo eventually hosted the 1956 Winter Olympics.:
                      Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


                      • #12
                        • IOC, Japan's prime minister agree to postpone Olympics for 1 year

                        Japan's prime minister, Shinzo Abe, and International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach agreed Tuesday to postpone this summer's Olympics by one year due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to multiple reports.

                        The Tokyo Games will now take place in the summer of 2021, marking the first time the Olympics have been postponed during peacetime.

                        The development comes after multiple calls to postpone the Games and at least two countries — Canada and Australia — officially pulled out.:
                        Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


                        • #13
                          • New dates announced for Tokyo 2020 Olympics postponed over coronavirus concerns

                          The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games that were postponed last week due to concerns around the coronavirus pandemic have been rescheduled for next summer.

                          The games will open July 23, 2021, and close Aug. 8, 2021. The Paralympics will be held Aug. 24 through Sept. 5, 2021.

                          The Olympics were originally scheduled to take place between July 24 and Aug. 9 this year, but Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) agreed last Tuesday to postpone the games, as countries around the world struggle to contain the pandemic that has claimed more than 34,000 lives and forced millions around the world into lockdowns.

                          The new schedule was agreed upon in a telephone conference between IOC President Thomas Bach, Tokyo 2020 President Yoshiro Mori and other officials, the IOC said in a statement Monday.

                          The new dates give health authorities and all involved in the organization of the games the maximum time to deal with the constantly changing landscape and the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the statement added.

                          "The new dates, exactly one year after those originally planned for 2020 also have the added benefit that any disruption that the postponement will cause to the international sports calendar can be kept to a minimum," the IOC said in its statement. "Additionally, they will provide sufficient time to finish the qualification process. The same heat mitigation measures as planned for 2020 will be implemented."

                          After the new dates were announced, World Athletics said its championships that were to be held in Eugene, Oregon, from Aug. 6 to 15, 2021, will be moved to new dates in 2022, so they don't clash with the new Olympic schedule.

                          The Olympics is the biggest event yet to be affected by the growing global pandemic.

                          The decision to postpone the games was welcomed by many athletes and national committees after growing calls for the games to be delayed or canceled because of the outbreak.

                          NBCUniversal, which is the parent company of NBC News, paid $4.4 billion for U.S. media rights to the four Olympics from 2014 to 2020.:
                          Keep your friends close and your enemies closer


                          • #14
                            Slightly OT but any chance of FIFA using the current pandemic to cancel the 2022 Football World Cup in Qatar ?
                            I visited TC a few times as a guest but had to stop. It is a sickening place. - Aging One


                            • #15
                              Tokyo 2020 weightlifting bans for Thailand and Malaysia confirmed by sanctions panel

                              Thailand and Malaysia have been officially banned from sending weightlifters to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games because of multiple doping offences, the Independent Member Federations Sanctions Panel has announced.

                              The Thai Amateur Weightlifting Association (TAWA) and the Malaysian Weightlifting Federation (MFW) have also been suspended as members of the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) for three years and one year, respectively.

                              In its decision, the panel said the ban on Thai and Malaysian weightlifters from Tokyo 2020 would apply whenever the Games take place after the event was postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic.

                              Thailand, the country with the worst recent doping record in the sport, had voluntarily withdrawn from international competitions, including Tokyo 2020, after nine of its weightlifters tested positive at the 2018 World Championships.

                              The decision from the panel, which punishes countries with multiple doping failures, makes that exclusion legally binding, pending any appeals to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

                              No Thai weightlifters had entered the IWF's Olympic qualification process following the self-suspension, imposed after 10 athletes failed drugs tests within a calendar year.

                              Thai athletes over the age of 18 have been excluded for an additional 11 months following the next IWF event which takes place, while under-18s cannot compete for five months after the next IWF competition.

                              The panel said the suspensions "will not start to run during the period when all IWF events are cancelled or postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic".

                              Officials at the TAWA, under new leadership after Prachaya Keeratinant was elected President last month, have been suspended for two years and are not eligible to be appointed to any IWF position until its status with the worldwide body is restored.

                              There is no mention in the ruling of where this leaves Intarat Yodbangtoey, who has a seat on the IWF Executive Board but is no longer an official of TAWA, having withdrawn from the presidential election won by Keeratinant.

                              The TAWA has also been fined $200,000 (£163,000/€185,000), half of which "shall be used by IWF to offset IWF costs already incurred in connection with the TAWA matter and for additional IWF testing of TAWA athletes", the panel said.

                              In a statement, the panel said the sanction on the TAWA will be in place until at least March 7, 2022 and could lifted on or after that date if the troubled federation meets a set of pre-determined criteria.

                              The entire Executive Board of the TAWA resigned in late January, three weeks after the broadcast of a German television documentary that claimed doping was widespread in Thai weightlifting.

                              Malaysia has been punished after three weightlifters were caught doping in a calendar year.

                              Athletes from the country have been banned from participating at IWF events for an additional five months following the next competition sanctioned by the worldwide body to take place.

                              The suspension of the MWF could be lifted as early as October 4 this year if the organisation can demonstrate it has adhered to criteria designed to prevent further doping issues in the future.

                              The panel, which comprises legal and anti-doping experts from the United States, Germany, Canada and New Zealand, suspended Egypt for two years in September because of six positives by youth and junior lifters.

                              Its existence had been threatened until members of the IWF Executive Board voted to retain it in December.

                              A number of Executive Board members - mostly from nations that cannot send a maximum team to Tokyo 2020 because of doping violations - had earlier proposed that the panel be disbanded.:

                              Keep your friends close and your enemies closer