Olympic surfer Kanoa Igarashi

2020 Tokyo Olympics Appears To Be Postponed

Courtesy of WOWSA, Odaiba Marine Park, Tokyo Bay, Japan.

Three students from one high school in Huntington Beach, California – a surfer, a water polo player and a volleyball player – are among the 11,000 athletes whose Olympic dreams were officially pushed off sometime in the future.

An interview with Kanoa Igarashi on CNN yesterday is posted here. His frankness, optimism and appreciation for the opportunities that he has been given and created for himself are easy to discern in the interview.

For the last several weeks, it seemed inevitable that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics were in jeopardy due to the coronavirus (COVID-10) pandemic,” observed Steven Munatones. “With the explosion of deaths and infected people, opinions changed among the International Olympic Committee family. Circumstances for the athletes, fans, broadcasters, sponsors and organizers rapidly changed. The global migration of the pandemic dramatically increased the momentum towards postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.”

An IOC member shared an unofficial tip with the media earlier today.

Veteran IOC member Richard Pound told USA TODAY that the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games will be postponed with details being decided in the short term. Pound has not shied away from difficult issues or the press. He was instrumental in looking into the death of American open water swimmer Fran Crippen in 2010 and the ongoing drug abuse scandal. He said, “On the basis of the information the IOC has, postponement has been decided. The parameters going forward have not been determined, but the Games are not going to start on July 24.

Not official…yet, but lives have been put on hold and training plans have changed,” said Munatones. “The top 10 male and female Olympic marathon swimmers have already qualified, so Haley Anderson (USA), Rachele Bruni (Italy), Kareena Lee (Australia), Ashley Twichell (USA), Jordan Wilimovsky (USA), Gregorio Paltrinieri (Italy), Mario Sanzullo (Italy), Florian Wellbrock (Germany), Marc-Antoine Olivier (France), Rob Muffels (Germany), Kristóf Rasovszky (Hungary), Ferry Weertman (Netherlands), Alberto Martinez (Spain), David Aubry (France), Xin Xin (China), Lara Grangeon (France), Ana Marcela Cunha (Brazil), Finnia Wunram (Germany), Leonie Beck (Germany), and Sharon van Rouwendaal (Netherlands) are directly impacted by the apparent decision, but I fully expect all of them to train for another year – or whenever the Tokyo Olympics will be held. All of these athletes have a great shot at the podium and are capable of capturing gold. But this delay gives relief to many as well as time for the athletes who are currently impacted by a lack of training facilities and opportunities to get back into shape and reset their training plans.

Note: More updates to follow. IOC decision here.

Photo above shows Tokyo Bay where the Olympic 10K Marathon Swim will be held in Odaiba Marine Park.

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