All the important sports competitions were canceled or postponed in March, because of the coronavirus pandemic. As the flagship football tournaments of 2020 were delayed for the next year or postponed indefinitely, the Tokyo 2020 Olympics was apparently the only unaffected event. Japanese officials have claimed for many weeks that the most anticipated sports event of the year will go on as planned. In the end, they had to bend under the international pressure and decided to postpone the games until 2021.
Covid19 threat crushes the Olympic dreams
The International Olympic Committee and the Japanese organizers claimed until the very last minute that the Tokyo 2020 Olympics could be held securely. In the face of mounting evidence and crushing pressure from national Olympic committees, sports federations and athletes, they had to make the announcement. It is now official that the event will be postponed for a few weeks and it is scheduled to start in late July. The final week of the month is the likely date to bring the best athletes in the world into the spotlight.
The much-anticipated opening ceremony of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will take place on July 24, barring any unforeseen circumstances. For the time being, the International Olympic Committee has refrained to make an official announcement, as things can change in the next days and weeks. Its officials promised that as soon as the situation will be resolved, the announcement will be made. NHK, the Japanese state broadcaster made similar promises and suggested July 23 as the likely date for the Olympics.
Uncertainty dampens the enthusiasm for the Olympics
The decision to postpone the Tokyo 2020 Olympics was not taken lightly, as it involves significant losses for those involved. On the bright side, Japan will still host the event this year and the biggest concern is the fact that July can be really hot in this country. This will pose unique challenges for those who participate in many sports events, such as the marathon. This Olympic event was moved to a city in the northern side of the country, where the temperature is more suitable for such an exhausting race.
In order to accommodate the new schedule for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics other important competitions had to be moved. The athletics world championships for example, were delayed so they don’t clash with the new official dates for the Olympics. Furthermore, the delays will cost a lot of money as contracts worth billions of dollars are under scrutiny. This is the first time in history that the Olympic Games are postponed, so nobody knows exactly what to expect, as there is no blueprint for that.
Now that the Tokyo 2020 Olympics were officially postponed, everyone is anxiously waiting to hear about the official date. Late July looks pretty reasonable, but the Covid-19 pandemic is so unpredictable that anything can happen in the next few months.