Will the summer olympics in 2020 be cancelled from the coronavirus, or delayed several months? The olympics committee has not yet indicated plans to cancel the olympics, though many people argue it’s all but inevitable.
Pressure on the olympic committee has continued to mount throughout the month of March, as the coronavirus pandemic has slowly impacted (and even frozen, in some cases) countries around the world.
On March 23, the countries of Canada and Australia announced they would not be sending athletes to Tokyo for the summer olympics in July.
Thomas Bach, the president of the International Olympic Commiteee (IOC) has repeatedly stated in recent weeks that the Games would not be cancelled. On March 22, the IOC released a statement which confirmed it would be “stepping up” its “scenario-planning” for the summer olympics, but that the committee still was not considering cancellation.
Here’s what you need to know:
IOC Admits a ‘Number of Critical Venues for the Games’ Might Not Be Available Anymore
The Olympic Games might still be in the books, as of March 23, but the IOC has admitted that the Games will look very different than originally planned, if they do take place. In a statement on March 22, the IOC said in part,
A number of critical venues needed for the Games could potentially not be available anymore. The situations with millions of nights already booked in hotels is extremely difficult to handle, and the international sports calendar for at least 33 Olympic sports would have to be adapted. These are just a few of many, many more challenges.
Therefore, further to the study of different scenarios, it would need the full commitment and cooperation of the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and the Japanese authorities, and of all the International Federations (IFs) and National Olympic Committees (NOCs). It would also require commitment from, and collaboration with, the Rights-Holding Broadcasters (RHBs) and our TOP Partner sponsors, as part of their continued and valued support to the Olympic Movement, as well as cooperation from all the Games’ partners, suppliers and contractors. It is in this spirit of the Olympic stakeholders’ shared commitment to the Olympic Games, and in light of the worldwide deteriorating situation, that the IOC EB has today initiated the next step in the IOC’s scenario-planning.
The IOC then went on to say, “Cancellation is not on the agenda.”
So what do some of these other scenarios look like? It’s hard to say. The IOC hasn’t explicitly stated what some of these scenarios would look like. However, the IOC did confirm that it would make a final decision within the next four weeks about the fate of the 2020 summer olympics.
Pressures Are Mounting to Cancel the 2020 Summer Olympics, From Athletes to Countries
As the pandemic worsens around the globe, cries to cancel the 2020 summer olympics have slowly amplified.
Many former Olympians have spoken out about how athletes won’t be able to legitimately train under some of the restrictions in places like Italy and the United States, while others have pointed out the safety aspect of hosting such a large, international event.
Hugh Robertson, chairman of the British Olympic Association, has pointed out that four weeks might be far too long to wait for a decision, amid such global uncertainty.
“We urge rapid decision-making for the sake of athletes who still face significant uncertainty,” Robertson said, per The New York Times. “Restrictions now in place have removed the ability of athletes to compete on a level playing field, and it simply does not seem appropriate to continue on the present course toward the Olympic Games in the current environment.”