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  • Writer's pictureTania Wee

Tokyo 2020: Olympic Pushed to Summer 2021, dates to be announced

In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO, the IOC President and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community.

The unprecedented and unpredictable spread of the outbreak has seen the situation in the rest of the world deteriorating. The Director General of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that the COVID-19 pandemic is "accelerating". There are more than 375,000 cases now recorded worldwide and in nearly every country, and their number is growing by the hour.

The leaders agreed that the Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present. Therefore, it was agreed that the Olympic flame will stay in Japan. It was also agreed that the Games will keep the name Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.

Simone Biles' coach Cecile Landi, who represented France at Atlanta 1996, admitted that the delay would be heartbreaking for athletes, especially gymnasts, but that the postponement was "needed". With Biles planning to retire after the Tokyo Games, the four-time Olympic champion from Rio 2016 will need to continue training for another year in order to add to her medal tally.

Source: Tokyo Olympic 2020 Press Release

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