Olympics Q&A: What now for the Tokyo Games? | Simon Burnton

How will the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics because of coronavirus affect an event thought to cost £10bn? See all our coronavirus coverage Among several options considered by the organising committee in recent days has been short-term postponements, by two months or even just one. That possibility has now been rejected, with the joint statement released on Tuesday by the IOC and the Tokyo organising committee saying the event will now commence on “a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021” . Shinzo Abe, Japan’s prime minister, said his favoured option was “to postpone for about a year” but there has been some talk of holding a “Cherry Blossom Games” next spring. There are several obstacles to that happening: according to the Japanese Meteorological Agency, in 2019 the average temperature in Tokyo was a chilly 10.6C in March and 13.6C in April, and the first month in which they reliably exceed an outdoor-sport-friendly 20C is June; more important, the Olympics would struggle to attract star names from the NBA before their season ends in June, from European football before their season ends, presumably in May ( with a rescheduled Euro 2020 to follow ) and from golf if it is run at the same time as the US Open in June 2021 or the Open in July. World Athletics has already indicated its willingness to move the 2021 world championships, which were to be held in Eugene, Oregon in August. Continue reading...

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