Lausanne: International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach has said that he did not discuss new dates for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics during his talks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. One option would be July 23-August 8. That is exactly one year from the now-postponed July 24-August 9 dates.
Bach stated that the exact dates are questions for the Tokyo organising committee and an IOC panel overseeing the preparations. They have to take a call on the new timings.
Swimming and track have their biennial World Championships scheduled to start in July or August 2021.
Bach said the ‘alarming figures’ in the past few days about the coronavirus were the key to deciding the Tokyo Olympics must be postponed.
Bach cited the World Health Organisation and said ‘in the last couple of hours that Africa has to prepare for the worst’. The IOC has been advised by the WHO, which said Monday the pandemic is accelerating and hence the IOC decided to postpone the Games.
Bach said the original health issue for hosting the Tokyo Olympics was ‘could Japan offer a safe welcome’ and the IOC was confident it could.