SHOWS: GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA, UNITED STATES (APRIL 3, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1. (SOUNDBITE) (English) OLYMPIC AND WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPION, CAELEB DRESSEL, SAYING: "If the swimming pools get shut down then I guess I'm going to get really good at running. There are ways around it just to keep that heart rate up but for the most part we're all in the same boat, but it is tough. I mean of course I would like to have my normal routine, but I don't have that, so what are the next steps to take. If I have to train in my living room, if they completely shut everything down or I can't leave the house then I'm training in the living room. Like I said, it's a part of the puzzle, it's a part of the process. If I don't have something available, then we'll make do. So, if I have to train in my living room then I'll get ready." 2. WHITE FLASH 3. (SOUNDBITE) (English) OLYMPIC AND WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPION, CAELEB DRESSEL, SAYING: "It's been weird. That's the best word I have for everything. I mean, 100% I don't want to make light of this situation at all. I understand the severity but it's been weird for everybody, not just me, just how empty the streets are and how you want to make plans to go to the beach or go to downtown or something and it's just like 'Oh wait, we can't do that right now'. So definitely taking precautions and stuff. A lot of shops… all the shops are closed. Really the only thing open for us is food that you can order to go and then grocery stores have the one in one out policy if you want to buy groceries. So, I've been cooking a lot more than I normally do. And then get to hang out with my roommates. So, it's been definitely different but I'm starting to settle into a routine during this time and that will be good so it hasn't been too bad." 4. WHITE FLASH 5. (SOUNDBITE) (English) OLYMPIC AND WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPION, CAELEB DRESSEL, SAYING: "There is one pool open that's about 45 minutes away from me and then I am fortunate enough to have my strength coach actually has all his equipment, all the needed equipment with the normal weight routine I'm on in his garage. So, weights has been fine, my strength levels are fine, just maintaining the best I can. I don't want to fry myself at this moment like I was saying because the meet (Olympic Games) is so far along and kind of out of reach a little bit but I have pool time Monday to Friday, 45 minutes away - only singles - but I'll drive further if I have to. I don't know, again, it's just with uncertainties. I don't know how long that pool is going to be open. It's a small group, we're not breaking any of the rules that we have in place here. It's a very small group that's going up there to train, we sign waivers before we get in the water of we're symptom free, we haven't been out of the state, all this stuff. So we're taking the right steps for sure. I don't want to put anyone in harm's way just so I can get to a pool in Florida but it has been tough. I miss swimming." 6. WHITE FLASH 7. (SOUNDBITE) (English) OLYMPIC AND WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPION, CAELEB DRESSEL, SAYING: "I mean it's been awesome. I mean just to have something because there's so many uncertainties right now, you know. I don't know when my next swim meet is going to be. I don't know when I'm going to be back in the pool I normally train at. I don't know when campus is going to open up again. There's uncertainties for everybody - I'm not the only one in this boat, I don't want to play the victim here in any part. I still have a job. The worst thing is my Olympics got cancelled - OK, I wasn't even on the Olympic team, OK. So really the worst thing for me was the U.S. Olympic trials got cancelled, OK, I wasn't even guaranteed a spot going to Tokyo. So, it's fine. (They're) not even cancelled, they're postponed so OK my meet is a year later that's the worst thing that can happen to me. So to be able to have through all this uncertainty a meet that we know is going to happen, financial gains that are in place already through (Ukrainian businessman) Konstantin (Grigorishin) and ISL (International Swimming League); it's huge for everyone to have that fallback during a time like this and to have that support through ISL which was so much fun last year. I mean, enjoyed it, the new team mates I made, being a part of a whole new team that didn't exist before rather than a country which is how typically all swimming competitions are setup - country v country - so it's nice to have that unity of course within not just one country but swimmers from all over the world to be able to fallback on that same plan that was put in place last year and then to come up with that whether it was plan A, plan B, plan C, plan D, whatever from Konstantin and to have something in place that is for sure is tremendous. It's huge for us, to have that support it means so much because swimming is not the biggest sport in the world, I totally understand that, I don't really care but to have someone who does care about us; it's massive." 8. WHITE FLASH 9. (SOUNDBITE) (English) OLYMPIC AND WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPION, CAELEB DRESSEL, SAYING: "So, I like the idea. I think it's great that Konstantin is putting something in place but there's so much uncertainty with sponsorships that I have at the moment, with where those are going to go, how those dates are going to pan out. So, I like the idea, I love that Konstantin is supporting us but I don't know how far in advance what my schedule is going to be like or what it's going to be like or how the companies I'm involved with at the moment what they're going to need from me within those months. So, I like the idea, of course. I mean I would love to compete in ISL, it was great last year but I can't say 100% I'm doing this because there's so many uncertainties right now for everybody but I mean I like the idea of being together with everybody again, racing again and it would be pretty cool to have it in the same spot like that." GWANGJU, SOUTH KOREA (FILE - JULY 27, 2019) (REUTERS PICTURES - ACCESS ALL) (MUTE) 10. STILL PHOTOGRAPH OF DRESSEL COMPETING IN THE MEN'S 100-METRE BUTTERFLY FINAL AT THE WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS GWANGJU, SOUTH KOREA (FILE - JULY 26, 2019) (REUTERS PICTURES - ACCESS ALL) (MUTE) 11. TWO STILL PHOTOGRAPHS OF DRESSEL COMPETING IN THE MEN'S 100-METRE BUTTERFLY HEATS AT THE WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS GWANGJU, SOUTH KOREA (FILE - JULY 27, 2019) (REUTERS PICTURES - ACCESS ALL) (MUTE) 12. TWO STILL PHOTOGRAPHS OF DRESSEL JUST AFTER WINNING THE MEN'S 50-METRE FREESTYLE FINAL AT THE WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS 13. STILL PHOTOGRAPH OF DRESSEL POSING WITH THE MEN'S 50-METRE FREESTYLE GOLD MEDAL TOKYO, JAPAN (FILE - DECEMBER 15, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 14. VARIOUS OF OLYMPIC RINGS OUTSIDE NATIONAL STADIUM TOKYO, JAPAN (FILE - NOVEMBER 21, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 15. VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF AQUATICS CENTRE, WHICH WILL HOST SWIMMING AND DIVING DURING OLYMPICS 16. VARIOUS INTERIORS OF AQUATICS CENTRE STORY: Caeleb Dressel's world, like billions of others around the world, has been turned upside down by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Olympic and world swimming champion was preparing for the Tokyo 2020 Games until last week but now that that's been postponed until next year, the 23-year-old has a very clear diary. Dressel, a 13-times world champion, now has to drive 45 minutes to the nearest swimming pool that's open in order to train every day in Florida while adhering to the state rules on social distancing. When he's not training, he's spending a lot of time with his two roommates and dog instead of going to the beach and downtown. And if the levels of social restrictions are increased, Dressel told Reuters on Friday (April 3), that he would train in his living room if he had to in order to stay fit for when normality resumes and he can focus on his aim of adding to his one Olympic gold medal he claimed at the Rio 2016 Games. The Tokyo Games, originally scheduled to start in July this year, have been postponed to July 23-Aug 8, 2021 due to the pandemic. There is so much uncertainty in most athletes' lives at the moment which is why Dressel proclaimed Friday's news that the professional International Swimming League (ISL) will fund its contracted athletes with monthly payments from September through to next year's rescheduled Tokyo Olympics as "massive". The ISL also plans to get all its 320 swimmers, which Dressel is one of, together for a five-week special event of training and competition, possibly filmed behind closed doors and with Australia the likely location, from Oct 14 to Nov. 17 subject to the COVID-19 pandemic. Dressel said the 'Solidarity Program' would provide peace of mind at a time of uncertainty, with some countries in lockdown as they battle the new coronavirus. Dressel, who competed in the inaugural ISL season, liked the idea of doing it again but stopped short of committing to a return to the planned five-week event, due in part to uncertainty with his existing sponsorships. The ISL launched last year as a fast-paced competition with 10 teams from Europe and North America featuring an array of world and Olympic champions and bankrolled by Ukrainian businessman Konstantin Grigorishin. The contracted swimmers will each get a guaranteed $1,500 a month from Sept. 1 to July 1 with $11 million set aside to cover wages, bonuses, ambassador payments and prize money in a condensed season. The total cost of paying for everything could amount to $20 million dollars, although that could be reduced by television deals and sponsorship and depends on the planned five-week 'radical swimming event' going ahead.
Posted: April 3, 2020, 7:24 pm
The under-construction Athletes Village for the Tokyo Olympics could be used as a temporary hospital for coronavirus patients. Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike has been talking about the possibility of occupying the massive development on Tokyo Bay, which is to house up to 11,000 Olympic and 4,400 Paralympic athletes and staff during the games. , is expected to remain unoccupied with the Olympics delayed for 16 months.
Posted: April 3, 2020, 9:59 am
Postponing the Tokyo Olympics to 2021 will make the event more costly for all parties, the International Olympic Committee acknowledged on Thursday, although it offered few details on what the final bill might be. Four directors of the Olympic body held a conference call three days after Tokyo’s new dates were finalized, with the games pushed back to July 23-Aug. 8 next year because of the coronavirus pandemic. While the new dates cleared up any uncertainty about the event's future, there are still plenty of question marks as the IOC begins to work with Tokyo organizers and governing bodies of 33 sports in a huge task to amend thousands of contracts.
Posted: April 2, 2020, 5:14 pm
Olympic chiefs said Thursday they were bracing themselves for the extra costs incurred by rescheduling the Tokyo Games by a year to 2021. The historic decision to postpone the summer Olympics by 12 months was taken this week amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. According to the latest budget, the Games were due to cost $12.6 billion, shared between the organising committee, the government of Japan and Tokyo city.
Posted: April 2, 2020, 4:29 pm
RESENDING WITH UPDATED SCRIPT VIDEO SHOWS: AUDIO OF SOUNDBITES FROM IOC SPORTS DIRECTOR, KIT MCCONNELL AND IOC'S OLYMPIC GAMES EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CHRISTOPHE DUBI, SHOWS: UNKNOWN LOCATION (APRIL 2, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1. (SOUNDBITE) (English) IOC SPORTS DIRECTOR, KIT MCCONNELL, SAYING: (AUDIO IS OVERLAID BY REUTERS PICTURE OF KIT MCCONNELL) "All of the qualifications that have been achieved by an NOC (National Olympic Committee) or by an athlete remain in place. Now yes, because it's defined in the Olympic charter any athlete that goes to the Games needs to be individually selected by their National Olympic Committee because they are representing the NOC. But in all sports the NOC retains the right to select the individual athlete from anyone who is eligible to fill that place." 2. (SOUNDBITE) (English) IOC SPORTS DIRECTOR, KIT MCCONNELL, SAYING: (AUDIO IS OVERLAID BY REUTERS PICTURE OF KIT MCCONNELL) "Look, one of the interesting things with moving the dates is not only in football but in several sports there are specific age regulations in place; be it a minimum age or a maximum age and some cases that's designed to be for health and safety reasons - in others it's to provide a specific age group and in particular men's football where we have the restriction on to under-23 with the four players over that date. As you can imagine we're only a few days after the decision to know exactly when the Games are but we're in discussions with each of the federations including FIFA where those age regulations are specified in the qualifying systems and we hope to finalise that in the next couple of weeks for everyone's certainty. So no decisions yet but you can imagine there's a logic to looking at that and having the same athletes or teams that achieve the qualification place to be the ones taking part next year but only to confirm that with the respective international federations including FIFA in the next couple of weeks." 3. (SOUNDBITE) (English) IOC'S OLYMPIC GAMES EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CHRISTOPHE DUBI, SAYING: (AUDIO IS OVERLAID BY REUTERS PICTURE OF CHRISTOPHE DUBI) "The (athletes') village is part of the first priority. The village is the home away from home for the athletes. It's a fantastic development that has been made here. So yes it's part of the very first task to re-secure this fantastic property that has been developed and will become, as you know, as of 2023 a new community in the Bay of Tokyo so yes absolutely it's part of that urgency list that we want to tick those boxes." 4. (SOUNDBITE) (English) IOC'S OLYMPIC GAMES EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, CHRISTOPHE DUBI, SAYING: (AUDIO IS OVERLAID BY REUTERS PICTURE OF CHRISTOPHE DUBI) "So it's a massive undertaking to get back to the fundamentals and make sure that in a matter of weeks we have secured and locked all of this so that then the other task which is to plan for the remainder of the 16 months to go can be done having some certainty regarding these fundamental pieces that needs to be in place." TOKYO, JAPAN (FILE - DECEMBER 15, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 5. VARIOUS OF OLYMPIC RINGS OUTSIDE NATIONAL STADIUM TOKYO, JAPAN (FILE - DECEMBER 15, 2019) (FOREIGN POOL - ACCESS ALL) 6. VARIOUS INTERIORS OF NATIONAL STADIUM SAPPORO, JAPAN (FILE - APRIL 10, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 7. VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF SAPPORO DOME, WHICH WILL HOST SOCCER MATCHES DURING OLYMPICS TOKYO, JAPAN (FILE - NOVEMBER 21, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 8. VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF AQUATICS CENTRE, WHICH WILL HOST SWIMMING AND DIVING DURING OLYMPICS 9. VARIOUS INTERIORS OF AQUATICS CENTRE TOKYO, JAPAN (MARCH 26, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 10. TOKYO 2020 OLYMPIC AND PARALYMPIC ATHLETES VILLAGE 11. VARIOUS OF WORK UNDERWAY AT ATHLETES VILLAGE 12. VARIOUS OF APARTMENTS AT ATHLETES VILLAGE 13. WORK UNDERWAY AT APARTMENTS AT ATHLETES VILLAGE 14. APARTMENTS AT ATHLETES VILLAGE STORY: Athletes already qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will need to be picked again by their respective National Olympic Committees to compete at the postponed Games in 2021, the International Olympic Committee said on Thursday (April 2). The IOC and Japanese government succumbed to intense pressure from athletes and sporting bodies around the world last week by agreeing to postpone the Games by a year to 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic. Some 57% of the 11,000 athletes had already qualified for the Tokyo Games this year before qualification tournaments were scrapped as the virus spread in recent months. Those athletes, the IOC said, would keep their qualification but would need to be re-selected for next year by their National Olympic Committee again as they represented a nation and not themselves. "All of the qualifications that have been achieved by National Olympic Committees and individual athletes remain in place," IOC Sports director Kit McConnell said in a conference call. "Any athlete needs to be individually selected because they represent their NOC. In all sports the NOC retains the right to select the athletes." McConnell said the IOC was also in talks with world soccer body FIFA to decide on tournament next year, as only players aged under 23 are allowed to compete apart from a limited number of over-age players per team. In many cases footballers will be above the age limit next year although having qualified this year. "In several sports there are specific age regulations, minimum or maximum, for health safety or to provide an age group as in men's football with under-23." "We are in discussions with FIFA... We have to finalise that in the coming weeks." The IOC is also efforting to make the athletes' village available again after it was planned to be sold off as apartments after this year's Games. "The village is part of the first priority," the IOC's Olympic Games Executive Director Christophe Dubi said. "The village is the home away from home, a fantastic development. It is one of the very first tasks to re-secure this fantastic property. Yes, it is absolutely on that urgency list". Dubi said those first priority venues, including the dozens of sports venues, convention sites and thousands of hotel rooms, would need to be re-secured quickly. "All of this has to be re-secured for one year later," Dubi said. "It is a massive undertaking to get back to fundamentals." He added that the IOC planned to have finalised talks for those "priority" locations in a matter of weeks. (Production: Tim Hart)
Posted: April 2, 2020, 4:16 pm
Organizers of the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing say they will conduct a “detailed assessment” of the impact on their plans of the decision to postpone the Tokyo Olympics to next year. In a statement carried by the official Xinhua News Agency, Beijing 2022 organizers said they were in close communication with the International Olympic Committee to ensure the “special situation" is handled properly. The IOC and local organizers agreed last week to push the Tokyo Games back a year because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Posted: April 2, 2020, 4:41 am
Reigning world and Olympic all-around gymnastics champion Simone Biles says coping with the mental strain of waiting another year for the Tokyo Olympics will take a heavy toll by 2021. Biles, who turned 23 last month, told the Today show on US Olympic telecaster NBC that she expects coaches will have her in top condition, but getting her mind in top shape in July a year later than planned will be difficult. "Physically I have no doubt that my coaches will get me back in shape," Biles said.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 7:35 pm
Still processing the emotion of losing 2020, Simone Biles isn't ready to make plans for 2021.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 6:29 pm
There's a large whiteboard calendar on a wall inside the massive gym owned by Simone Biles' family that outlines every major gymnastics event of the year, the 2020 Olympics included. When the Tokyo Games were officially postponed to the summer of 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the reigning Olympic champion's coaches ran over to the calendar and erased all of it. Watching Cecile Landi wipe away all of Biles' carefully laid plans left the 23-year-old star reeling.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 4:57 pm
The American gymnast, who is typically very active on social media, appeared on NBC's 'Today' program from her home to give her first public comments since the Olympics were postponed last week because of the coronavirus pandemic. "I was actually in the gym training at the time because we were allowed under 10 people... and I went to the locker in between rotations and I got a text," said Biles. The 23-year-old Biles, already the most decorated gymnast in world championship history, had previously said she would retire after the Tokyo Olympics, which were originally scheduled to run from July 24-Aug. 9 this year.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 3:57 pm
* Gymnast was set to be one of the stars of this summer’s Games * American says she agrees with decision to delay Tokyo OlympicsSimone Biles has spoken of her fears of the mental toll on athletes as they ponder an extra year of preparation for the Tokyo Olympics.The Games were due to start in July but have been postponed until the summer of 2021 as major sports events shut down due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Biles, who is arguably the greatest gymnast of all time, was expected to win multiple golds in Tokyo this year. > How did @Simone_Biles receive news that the 2020 Olympics were postponed? > > "I was in the gym training...I didn't really know what to feel. I just kind of sat there and I cried. But ultimately it was the right decision," she says. pic.twitter.com/UtOPD2SNjK> > — TODAY (@TODAYshow) April 1, 2020“Physically I have no doubts that my coaches will get me back in shape, but mentally going another year, I think that is what’s going to take the toll on me and all of us and most of the athletes,” the American told NBC’s Today show. “We have to stay in shape mentally just as much as physically. That will play a big factor moving forward, listening to your body and your mind.”Biles will be 24 when the Games start next year, an age when most Olympic gymnasts have long since retired. She says the decision to delay the Olympics was correct.“I was actually in the gym training at the time because we were allowed under 10 people ... and I went to the locker and between rotations and I got a text,” she said. “I didn’t really know what to feel. I just kind of sat there. I cried but ultimately it was the right decision. We need to make sure everyone in the US and around the world is healthy and safe. It was hard but it’s OK.”Athletes face challenges to their training schedule with large parts of the world in lockdown, but Biles said she is finding ways to stay in shape.“I’m in contact through text and FaceTime with my coaches ... so we can figure out a plan moving forward for the next year,” she said. “Other than that, they have sent us at-home workouts. I’m also walking my dog a lot more. Just trying to stay healthy and in shape before we can return to the gym and start the training process again.”Biles has won 30 golds combined at the Olympics and gymnastics world championships. Four of those golds came at Rio 2016, where she was one of the stars of the Games.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 2:12 pm
Simone Biles is still planning on competing in the rescheduled 2020 Olympics, and is staying in shape by walking her dog.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 2:03 pm
The Olympic flame will be on display until the end of April in Japan's northeastern prefecture of Fukushima. Tokyo Olympic and prefecture officials held an official “handover ceremony”on Wednesday at the J-Village National Training Center in Fukushima. The flame arrived in Japan from Greece on March 20 and the torch relay was to have started last week from Fukushima.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 11:35 am
The Olympic flame will be on display until the end of April in Japan's northeastern prefecture of Fukushima. Tokyo Olympic and prefecture officials held an official “handover ceremony”on Wednesday at the J-Village National Training Center in Fukushima. The flame arrived in Japan from Greece on March 20 and the torch relay was to have started last week from Fukushima.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 9:25 am
RESENDING WITH COMPLETE SCRIPT VIDEO SHOWS: TOKYO 2020 CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER YUKIHIKO NONOMURA RECEIVING OLYMPIC FLAME IN LANTERN AND HOLDING OVER TO FUKUSHIMA GOVERNMENT REPRESENTATIVE MAKOTO NOJI / NONOMURA MAKING SPEECH / NOJI AND NONOMURA POSING WITH OLYMPIC FLAME / NOJI MAKING SPEECH / NOJI SPEAKING ABOUT IMPORTANCE OF J-VILLAGE / LANTERN ON DISPLAY / CHILDREN PLAYING FOOTBALL AT J-VILLAGE SHOWS: FUKUSHIMA, JAPAN (APRIL 1, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1. OLYMPIC FLAME IN LANTERN ARRIVING AND BEING HANDED TO TOKYO 2020 CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER YUKIHIKO NONOMURA 2. NONOMURA PASSING OLYMPIC FLAME TO HEAD OF BUREAU OF CULTURE AND SPORTS FOR FUKUSHIMA GOVERNMENT, MAKOTO NOJI 3. NONOMURA AND NOJI POSING WITH OLYMPIC FLAME 4. NOJI PLACING OLYMPIC FLAME IN LANTERN ON PEDESTAL 5. OLYMPIC FLAME IN LANTERN ON PEDESTAL 6. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) TOKYO 2020 CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER, YUKIHIKO NONOMURA, SAYING: "This is a (symbol of) hope for the world so that it can overcome the serious problem of the novel coronavirus and through the Tokyo 2020 Games, we will be able to celebrate the best of humanity." 7. TOKYO 2020 TORCH RELAY SIGN 8. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) HEAD OF BUREAU OF CULTURE AND SPORTS FOR FUKUSHIMA GOVERNMENT, MAKOTO NOJI, SAYING: "We hope that by combining our efforts with people both in and outside Japan, we will be able to overcome the unprecedented difficulties the world is facing due to the novel coronavirus. Next year, we are sure that the Olympic flame which will depart from the J-village will be a flame of hope that will hold the strong message that all difficulties can be overcome and that this will provide a light of hope to many people." 9. NONOMURA AND NOJI POSING WITH OLYMPIC FLAME 10. OLYMPIC FLAME IN LANTERN ON PEDESTAL 11. VARIOUS OF NONOMURA AND NOJI POSING WITH OLYMPIC FLAME IN LANTERN 12. NONOMURA AND NOJI ARRIVING FOR MEDIA BRIEFING 13. (SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) HEAD OF BUREAU OF CULTURE AND SPORTS FOR FUKUSHIMA GOVERNMENT, MAKOTO NOJI, SAYING: "J-Village is Fukushima prefecture's symbol of reconstruction following the the big earthquake and nuclear power station accident. This is the Grand Start (of the torch relay). I am very happy that we are able to show the Olympic flame here where it can be seen by everyone in the prefecture. " 14. VARIOUS OF OLYMPIC FLAME IN LANTERN ON PEDESTAL 15. EXTERIOR OF J-VILLAGE, JAPAN'S NATIONAL TRAINING CENTRE FOR SOCCER 16. SIGN READING (English) "J-VILLAGE NATIONAL TRAINING CENTER" 17. VARIOUS OF CHILDREN PLAYING SOCCER ON PITCHES STORY: Tokyo 2020 organisers left the Olympic Flame in the hands of Fukushima prefecture on Wednesday (April 1), where the diminutive flame, housed in a lantern, will be on display for the next month. The stilted and subdued ceremony took place at the J-Village National Training Center in Fukushima, originally set to be the starting point of the torch relay before the decision came to postpone the Games until next year following the coronavirus outbreak. The Olympics will now run from July 23 to August 8, 2021 following a decision made by the International Olympic Committee and Games organisers last week. On a day when the torch relay was supposed to be already a week in, the ceremony was understandably low-key, with only Tokyo 2020 chief operating officer Yukihiko Nonomura from the organising committee making the trip north. The flame will stay on display in the J-Village until April 30, where it will be moved to Tokyo. Organisers have yet to decide where in the Japanese capital it will be displayed. "This is a (symbol of) hope for the world so that it can overcome the serious problem of the novel coronavirus and through the Tokyo 2020 Games, we will be able to celebrate the best of humanity," said Nonomura to start the ceremony. He then handed the Olympic flame to Makoto Noji, head of culture and sports for the Fukushima government. The J-Village was chosen as the starting point of the 121-day torch relay, originally due to start on March 26, because it is a symbol of Japan's reconstruction following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. The facility was used as a base to launch recovery efforts along the devastated coastline and has only recently been resurrected to its former glory as a centre for Japan's elite young soccer players. (Production: Jack Tarrant, Yu Takito)
Posted: April 1, 2020, 8:34 am
The world in 1919 was hardly a place for fun and games. A war like no other had ravaged Europe, killing untold millions and leaving the continent devastated. The Spanish flu pandemic was waning but still wreaking its horrors, with some 50 million people dead worldwide, including 675,000 in the United States.
Posted: April 1, 2020, 6:26 am
The countdown clocks have been reset and are ticking again for the Tokyo Olympics. The model outside Tokyo Station, and others across the Japanese capital, were switched on almost immediately after organizers announced the new dates - July 23 to Aug. 8, 2021. Then again, it's not much time to reassemble the first Olympics to be postponed since the modern games began 124 years ago; not for 11,000 Olympic athletes and 4,400 Paralympic athletes, and not for sponsors, broadcasters, the fans that have already bought tickets and Japanese organizers and taxpayers who have spent billions and will have to come up with billions more to pay for the setback.
Posted: March 31, 2020, 11:38 am
LONDON/NEW YORK (Reuters) - Tweeting from her Toronto couch two weeks ago, six-time Olympian Hayley Wickenheiser had two words for the International Olympic Committee, which had yet to postpone the Tokyo Summer Games amid the coronavirus pandemic: "Insensitive and irresponsible." As the coronavirus pandemic swept the globe, sponsors and broadcasters with millions of dollars on the line stayed mostly silent about the timing of the Tokyo Olympic Games, scheduled to open in July. For exasperated Wickenheiser, 41, something had to give.
Posted: March 31, 2020, 10:52 am
Because of the coronavirus outbreak, the Tokyo Olympics will open July 23, 2021 — almost a year after they were due to start.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 5:56 pm
Cal men's swimming, Team USA head coach David Durden saw 'relief' and 'disappointment' upon postponement of Tokyo Olympics
Pac-12 Networks' Mike Yam speaks with Cal men's swimming head coach and Team USA head coach David Durden to learn how the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics will affect his swimmers. The Games have been rescheduled for July 23-Aug. 8, 2021. Durden served as an assistant for Team USA at the 2016 Rio Games and has coached athletes at the last four Olympic Games.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 4:50 pm
Many Olympic athletes are cash strapped already. Now, with the coronavirus pushing the 2020 Olympics to 2021, some are wondering how they’re going to finance another year.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 4:24 pm
The Tokyo Olympics will open next year in the same time slot scheduled for this year's games. Tokyo organizers said Monday the opening ceremony will take place on July 23, 2021 - almost exactly one year after the games were due to start. “The schedule for the games is key to preparing for the games," Tokyo organizing committee president Yoshiro Mori said.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 4:10 pm
After last week’s postponement, new dates have been set for the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The decision was taken Monday (March 30) after a conference call between the Tokyo 2020 organizers and the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The new dates mean the rescheduled Olympics will begin on July 23, 2021 and will run until August 8, with the Paralympics starting just over two weeks later. The Olympics was one of the last major sporting events to be canceled in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, but the IOC took the decision to ensure the safety of athletes and spectators. Japan must now shift its attention to finalizing a new schedule and use of the venues for each of the 33 sports that make up this Olympic program. Still to have its fate officially determined this year is the Wimbledon tennis championships. Shifting the June and July, southwest London event later to the three-week window vacated by the Olympics is still an option for this year, but seems unlikely, given the current restrictions in preparing the All England club. A decision is expected this week for the world’s most famous grass court tournament, but playing matches behind closed doors has already been ruled out.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 2:25 pm
The Tokyo Olympics will begin on July 23 next year, organisers said on Monday, after the coronavirus forced the historic decision to postpone the Games until 2021. Only hours earlier, Mori had said he expected a decision from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) during the course of the week.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 2:14 pm
The Tokyo Olympics will take place in 2021.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 12:08 pm
The Tokyo 2020 Olympics must acknowledge the coronavirus crisis which forced their postponement and incorporate it into next year's opening ceremony, executive producer Marco Balich said. Balich, an Italian with great experience in producing Olympic opening and closing ceremonies, said the Japanese had almost completed preparations for this year.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 9:00 am
New dates for the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympics will likely be revealed this week, organisers said Monday after the coronavirus forced the historic decision to postpone the Games until next year. Tokyo 2020 chief Yoshiro Mori told reporters they were weighing the pros and cons of a summer and spring Games and he expected a decision from the International Olympic Committee (IOC) soon. "I think perhaps there will be some kind of communication from (IOC) President (Thomas) Bach this week," Mori told reporters.
Posted: March 30, 2020, 7:26 am
Visa has told its global roster of Olympic and Paralympic hopefuls their sponsorships will be extended into 2021 after the Tokyo Games were postponed, providing some financial certainty amid the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The athletes were contacted on Friday to be given the option of extending their sponsorship terms with Visa. It is the first clear commitment by a major sponsor to extend such sponsorship support after the unprecedented delay to the Olympics by a year was announced last week by the IOC.
Posted: March 29, 2020, 11:31 pm
World Athletics president Sebastian Coe said Sunday that the decision to postpone this year's Tokyo Olympics because of the coronavirus has saved athletes from "mental turmoil". Former Olympic champion Coe supported the move to push the Games back to 2021 and said competitors would have been placed in an impossible position if the event had been left to start on July 24 as originally scheduled. "We didn't want to have the athletes in a position where they were countering government advice, maybe even breaking the law," Coe told TalkSport on Sunday.
Posted: March 29, 2020, 1:35 pm
Tokyo Olympic organizers seem to be leaning away from starting the rescheduled games in the spring of 2021. Organizing committee President Yoshiro Mori suggested there would be no major change from 2020. “The games are meant to be in summer, so we should be thinking of a time between June and September,” Japanese news agency Kyodo reported Mori saying on Saturday.
Posted: March 29, 2020, 1:34 pm
The date of the next world track championships is in limbo until the International Olympic Committee decides on a new schedule for the postponed Tokyo Games. Sebastian Coe, the Olympic great who is now president of World Athletics, said Friday there are plenty of options for rescheduling next year's world championships in Eugene, Oregon, but at the moment they all depend on the IOC. ''The International Olympic Committee, from our discussions yesterday, and the one-on-one discussions that will have already started this morning, are conscious that they need to make that decision quickly.
Posted: March 28, 2020, 7:17 pm
Things began to unravel this week when the Tokyo Olympics were postponed until next year - a decision announced by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in a joint agreement with IOC President Thomas Bach. The Olympic behemoth involves 11,000 Olympic athletes and 4,400 Paralympic athletes. Add to this 206 national Olympic committees, dozens of summer sports federations, thousands of contracts, and billions of dollars.
Posted: March 28, 2020, 7:16 pm
Two Olympic gold medalists were among four Russian track and field athletes charged with doping offenses. Andrei Silnov, the 2008 Olympic high jump champion, and Natalya Antyukh, the 2012 champion in the 400-meter hurdles, are facing charges of using a prohibited substance or method. The Athletics Integrity Unit said the cases were based on an investigation into Russian doping for the World Anti-Doping Agency presented in 2016 by Canadian lawyer Richard McLaren.
Posted: March 28, 2020, 7:16 pm
Japan's Naomi Osaka unveiled the games motto just last month.
Posted: March 28, 2020, 6:21 pm
Cindy Parlow Cone and Will Wilson inherited a mess amid Carlos Cordeiro's resignation and the sexist equal pay lawsuit filing. Here's how they can start repairing the damage.
Posted: March 28, 2020, 4:23 pm
Former Team USA Gold Medalist on impact Olympic Games postponement has on athletes.
Posted: March 28, 2020, 4:03 pm
The decision to postpone the Tokyo Olympics until next year because of the coronavirus pandemichas left American cyclists with an abundance of mixed feelings. “As tough as the news is to hear when obviously the planning that goes into the four-year cycle of it all, and obviously now we're only a few months out and on the homestretch of that path, it does stink to hear,” BMX rider and Olympic silver medalist Alise Willoughby said. Not just cyclists, of course, but for swimmers and gymnasts and a myriad other athletes for whom the Olympics is the once-every-four-year pinnacle of their sport.
Posted: March 28, 2020, 3:29 pm
World Athletics president Sebastian Coe admitted Friday that settling on a new date for the Tokyo Olympics in 2021 will not satisfy everybody. "All sports have made it pretty clear they have particular challenges at particular times of the year," said Coe. The 2021 World Athletics Championships, for example, are scheduled to be staged in August next year in Eugene, Oregon.
Posted: March 27, 2020, 11:42 pm
The IOC and international federations agreed that all athletes already qualified for the Tokyo Olympics will keep their spots for the rescheduled Summer Games.
Posted: March 27, 2020, 11:25 pm
The postponement of the Tokyo Games has catapulted the sports organizations that make up the backbone of the U.S. Olympic team into crisis. A database analyzed by The Associated Press shows combined projected losses of more than $121 million in revenue between February and June for 43 of the 50 national governing bodies that responded to a survey from the NGB Council in the wake of the coronavirus crisis. As much or more as the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, which serves as an umbrella regulator of the country's Olympic sports, it's the NGBs that provide funding and other support for athletes to pursue their dreams at the Olympic and other elite levels.
Posted: March 27, 2020, 8:12 pm
Over 6,000 athletes have already qualified for the Olympics, and the IOC announced on Friday that all of them will get to keep their spots.
Posted: March 27, 2020, 4:33 pm
The decision to postpone the Tokyo Olympics until 2021 will be welcomed by the sponsors who pay hundreds of millions to be associated with the event, British advertising veteran Martin Sorrell has told AFP. Faced with growing international pressure, the International Olympic Committee on Tuesday delayed the July 24-August 9 Games, a move never before seen in peacetime in the Olympics' 124-year history. Sorrell -- who founded advertising giant WPP and sits on the IOC's Communications Commission -- said delaying the Games was logical given the coronavirus pandemic and a resulting recession he compares only to that created by war.
Posted: March 27, 2020, 1:34 pm
All athletes who had qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will keep their spots for the Games next year following their postponement due to the coronavirus pandemic, the International Olympic Committee said on Friday. The IOC and Japanese organizers postponed the July 24-Aug 9 event earlier this week but confirmed that those among the 11,000 athletes set to compete in Tokyo who had already earned their spot would keep it. "The 57% that are qualified do remain in place and the goal is to maintain the same athletes quotas across the different sports," an IOC official said.
Posted: March 27, 2020, 11:50 am
A season-ending knee injury had Ben O'Donnell convinced he'd be watching the Tokyo Olympics from a distance, with absolutely no chance of pulling on the Australian jersey for the Rugby Sevens competition. Forgive him for being a tiny bit pleased this week when the Tokyo Games were postponed to 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic. ''I have seen (teammates) walking around and they keep telling me that I'm the only bloke that is smiling around here,'' O'Donnell said in a television interview with the Associated Press.
Posted: March 27, 2020, 8:33 am
The postponement of the 2020 Olympics delivers a short-term blow to US broadcasting giant NBC but the network is unlikely to suffer lasting damage from the bombshell decision, analysts say. The global coronavirus pandemic forced the International Olympic Committee and Japanese government to call off the July 24-August 9 games on Tuesday, a move never before seen in peacetime in the Olympics' 124-year history. While the decision was welcomed by increasingly anxious athletes and sports federations who had lobbied for a postponement, it handed a giant headache to the IOC's long-term broadcast partners NBC.
Posted: March 27, 2020, 1:27 am
Yahoo Sports Olympics analyst Shawn Johnson breaks down how an athlete’s training schedule has to reset and change over the next year.
Posted: March 26, 2020, 11:13 pm
The postponement of Tokyo 2020 leaves lots of unanswered questions for the U.S. U-23 men, some of whom could now be prevented from playing in the Olympics.
Posted: March 26, 2020, 6:22 pm
Carli Lloyd's age, Alex Morgan's return and the defense's personnel all factor into the picture.
Posted: March 26, 2020, 4:59 pm
Even if it takes an extra year, Nino Salukvadze will still be aiming for an Olympic record. The Georgian shooter has competed at every Olympics since 1988, where she won a gold medal for the Soviet Union. At the Tokyo Olympics - now postponed until 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic - she will set a women's record of nine appearances.
Posted: March 26, 2020, 1:52 pm
The IOC said Thursday it is “not aware of any link” between an Olympic boxing tournament it oversaw in London this month and positive coronavirus tests for people who were there. The Turkish boxing federation said a boxer and a trainer now have the virus after attending the Olympic qualifying tournament, which was stopped on March 16 after three of the scheduled 11 days. In a statement, the International Olympic Committee said it was “not possible to know the source of infection.”
Posted: March 26, 2020, 1:42 pm