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IOC "Considering Different Scenarios" For 2020 Tokyo Olympics: President Thomas Bach

Updated: 20 March 2020 08:37 IST

Pressure has been growing on the 2020 Tokyo Games, scheduled to start on July 24, after the COVID-19 outbreak closed sports competitions around the world.

IOC "Considering Different Scenarios" For 2020 Tokyo Olympics: President Thomas Bach
IOC president Thomas Bach remained optimistic about holding the Tokyo Olympics as scheduled. © AFP

International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach said the organisation was "considering different scenarios" for the Tokyo Games, but was optimistic about holding the event as scheduled despite the coronavirus pandemic. The IOC will act on advice from its own taskforce and the World Health Organization, Bach told the New York Times, adding that it was "premature" to make a decision on delaying the Olympic Games. "Of course we are considering different scenarios, but we are contrary to many other sports organisations or professional leagues in that we are four-and-a-half months away from the Games," Bach said.

"For us, (postponement) would not be responsible now and it would be premature to start speculation or make a decision at a time when we do not have any recommendation from the task force," he added.

Pressure has been growing on the Games, scheduled to start on July 24, after the COVID-19 outbreak closed sports competitions around the world, and paralysed many countries along with international travel.

Olympic qualifiers are among the tournaments affected, with 43 percent of athletes yet to book their spots. But Bach said the situation was still too uncertain to make a decision about Tokyo.

"What makes this crisis so unique and so difficult to overcome is the uncertainty. Nobody today can tell you what the developments are tomorrow, what they are in one month, not to mention in more than four months," he said.

"Therefore it would not be responsible in any way to set a date or take a decision right now, which would be based on the speculation about the future developments."

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Highlights
  • Bach said IOC was "considering different scenarios" for Tokyo Olympics
  • He was optimistic about holding the event as scheduled
  • IOC will act on advice from its own taskforce and the WHO
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