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TOKYO 2020

                                                 by the

 TOKYO 2020:


                                                                                               By Tim Mottram

 osting an Olympics is a   4%  At least 3.5 billion dollars    of the World Health Organisation, has issued
 Herculean task under the best of   ...the proportion of Japanese citizens   ...the amount in broadcasting revenue the   a so-called Playbook, which outlines the
 Hcircumstances, but when you throw   vaccinated. And herein lies the problem. From   International Olympic Committee stands to   measures that will be in place to protect the
 in a global pandemic which has seen the   an infrastructure perspective, Japan was better   lose. The IOC is technically a not-for-profit   15,000 athletes and their support crew. Before
 deaths of nearly four million people, things   placed than any country over the past twenty   organisation. This might paint them as a benign   even leaving their home countries, they will
 get even more complicated. What should   years to hold a successful Olympics. Of course,   ambassador for the wholesome, embracing   submit to two Covid tests. Once in Japan, the
 be the defining sporting event of the half   the budget never quite stretches to the vision,   nature of sporting excellence, but they are   local community will be protected by a kind
 decade has now become, more than ever, as   but all the venues were ready for 2020. When   actually an international behemoth. The   of mass quarantine, as the Olympic Village
 much about money and politics as it is about   Covid hit, though, Japan was caught flat-footed   numbers might be slightly obscure, but in 2016,   will be virtually cut off from the wider world.
 sporting excellence.   and political division meant that the vaccine   the IOC received $3.5 billion. Most of this came   Strictest hygiene will be enforced, and masks
 So, what are the stakes? What should the   rollout was slower than in many, less-developed   from televising rights. The IOC holds all the   mandatory until the moment before an event.
 global sporting public expect, and how will   countries. Given the massive, anticipated influx   rights to the Games, but no Games equals no   Athletes will be tested on a daily basis. Up until
 this even work? To take out the guesswork,   of athletes and staff from all across the globe,   cash. Sponsorships are the only other revenues   June it was stated that venues will be limited to
 Touchline has crunched the numbers...  Japan remains very vulnerable to a large-scale   for the IOC, which means there would be severe   50% capacity with a cap on capacity of 10,000
 flare up of the disease.  financial issues if the Games do not go ahead.  spectators, but there is now pressure to exclude
 2020 or 2021?                                                 all fans.
 In March of 2020, when the pandemic was   Within three months, the   2032
 starting to reach all corners of the world, the   idea that there was “no Plan   ...the reported counter offer made by Japan.
 International Olympic Committee was still   It is difficult to know what has been going on   ...but most significantly,
 confirming that Tokyo would be staging the   B” was replaced by “ahem,   behind the closed doors of the IOC and the   there will be no cheering
 Games that summer. Within three months, the   let’s try again next year”.   Japanese government, but one report claims   with only clapping allowed.
 idea that there was “no Plan B” was replaced by   that a suggestion was that Tokyo would cut and
 “ahem, let’s try again next year”. All merchandise   70%  run, with a view for a guaranteed hosting in 11
 and logos will reflect the fact that in July 2021, the   ...the percentage of Japanese citizens against   years. It might seem absurd to build an entire   33 Sports
 2020 Summer Olympics will be held.   the staging of the Games in 2021. Opinion polls   infrastructure for hosting the Olympics which   With all the noise surrounding these most
 vary, but the numbers against the Games being   would not be held for over a decade, but this   peculiar Games, it should be remembered what
 15.4 billion US dollars  held this summer are holding steady at over   speaks to Japan’s desperate straits. Holding   it is really all about. By the end of August, some the amount paid by Japan to prepare   50%. The Japanese medical field is very much   over to 2022 was mooted, but given that it is   5,000 medals will be awarded to the world’s
 Tokyo for the Olympics. Quite a chunk of   in the “oppose” column, claiming that there   estimated that the existing delay cost $2 billion,   best sports people. Baseball is back, alongside
 that was spent on the Olympic stadium. The   is no way the Games won’t increase the risks   this was a non-starter for all parties. Simply put,   the traditional sports of athletics, gymnastics
 previous one hosted the enormously successful   of infection to the vulnerable population. The   it is now or never.  and swimming. Surfing, skateboarding, karate
 1964 Olympics, but was considered outdated   Tokyo Medical Association has urged Prime   and sport climbing are set to make their debuts.
 and torn down to make way for the so-called   Minister Suga to cancel. A petition of 400,000   Once a day…  Drama and excitement are guaranteed, and
 koku-ritsu (meaning “national”). It will host the   signatures was rejected. The New England   ....Covid tests administered to athletes. With   hopefully, amongst this surreal setting, we can
 opening and closing ceremonies as well as the   Journal of Medicine came out with a report   no chance of turning this titanic ship around,   just enjoy the competition.
 track and field events.   claiming that the decision to go ahead was “not   authorities have been scrambling to arrange
 informed by the best scientific evidence”. But   the deck chairs. The IOC, under the advice
 despite all this push back, there is no question
 of cancellation. And here is why...

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