Postponed…Permanently? Say It Ain’t So – Uncertainty Of The Tokyo Olympics

Courtesy of WOWSA, Huntington Beach, California.

It is always difficult to accurately predict future IOC decisions regarding a variety of issues. But predictions are nearly impossible of the Tokyo Olympic Games due to the impact of the global lockdown and the ongoing COVID-19 concerns, especially among political leaders and public health safety officials.

Concerns over safety of the athletes, the availability of vaccines, global travelers from around the world descending upon one of the world’s most densely populated cities, stadiums and venues packed with spectators, and increasingly larger costs of hosting the Games, along with basic security, are constant and overwhelming for both the IOC and the host Japanese.

Athletes are getting back into shape and re-focused on their training after many of the local lockdown mandates have been lifted. But the big question remains, “Will there be a Tokyo Olympics in 2021?

Tomorrow, July 24th, was scheduled to be the Opening Ceremonies of the Tokyo Olympic Games.

For many, the possibility of actually hosting, watching, volunteering in, and participating in the postponed Games is becoming lesser and lesser as time goes – see Japan Times article here (Doubt and uncertainty remain one year before postponed Tokyo Olympic Games).

But when we think of all the greatness and inspirational stories that come out of the Olympic Games – from athletes like leukemia survivor Maarten van der Weijden and amputee Natalie du Toit to medalists like Spyros Gianniotis and Éva Risztov – who both stuck with the sport for decades – we long to watch the Olympics once again in 2021.

Rikako Ikee, a survivor of leukemia and a world-class swimmer before her illness, is making a comeback a la van der Weijden. Her participation in the Tokyo Olympics could single-handedly lift the spirits of millions of her Japanese fans. Here’s to watching Ikee and thousands of other athletes compete in Tokyo next year, safely and successfully.

Copyright © 2008 – 2020 by World Open Water Swimming Association