Tokyo Olympics: Will take place ‘with or without Covid’, says IOC

International Olympic Committee and The  Japanese government headed by  Yoshihide Suga remain committed to hosting the Tokyo Olympics next year and for this purpose,  a 15,000-seat swimming venue for the multinational games was opened on October  24. His predecessor  Shinzo Abe had to postpone the 2020 Summer  Olympics due to Covid-19. The US$542 million Aquatics Centre for swimming, diving and artistic swimming was completed in February, but its grand opening ceremony scheduled for March was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic  “I hope top athletes in the world will compete at this venue … I’m already excited,” Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike told reporters. The city hopes to welcome more athletes, promising to host a “successful” Olympics through implementing anti-virus safety measures. The main pool at the Aquatics Centre features a movable wall allowing the 50m facility to be converted into two 25m pools, with the depth also adjustable. Tokyo hopes to make the most of the facility after the 2020 Games, aiming to attract one million users a year – 850,000 through swimming competitions and about 150,000 casual punters. Swimming star Rikako Ikee, 20, joined three other athletes in a relay as part of moral boosting measures amid the Asian giant fighting to combat the dreaded virus. After being discharged from hospital in December following ten months of treatment for leukaemia, she resumed training in March and competitions in August eyeing to finish at the podium. The main pool at the Aquatics Centre features a movable wall allowing the 50m facility to be converted into two 25m pools, with the depth also adjustable. Featuring a record 33 sports, 339 medal events and 42 venues, the Summer  Tokyo Olympiad will open on 23 July 2021 and close on 8 August. The actual competition will start two days before the Opening Ceremony on 21 July with softball in Fukushima. The Beijing Winter Olympics are scheduled for February 4-20, 2022, just six months after the Tokyo Summer Games. edited by PK Chakravarty

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *