The phrase, “It's a fluid situation,” has emerged as the unofficial motto of sports leagues throughout the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. On Tuesday, the 2020 Olympics became the latest big event to make a quick change in plans.
Less than two days after the International Olympic Committee announced it was giving itself a four-week window to decide the fate of the 2020 Olympics, the IOC and the Tokyo 2020 Organizing Committee released a joint statement postponing the event until next year. Here are the key parts:
In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO today, the IOC President and the Prime Minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community.
The leaders agreed that the Olympic Games in Tokyo could stand as a beacon of hope to the world during these troubled times and that the Olympic flame could become the light at the end of the tunnel in which the world finds itself at present. Therefore, it was agreed that the Olympic flame will stay in Japan. It was also agreed that the Games will keep the name Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020.
On Sunday, both Canada and Australia announced they wouldn't send any athletes to the Games this year, while calling for the Olympics to move to 2021. By Monday, longtime IOC member Dick Pound told USA Today the Games would be postponed, so Tuesday's announcement didn't come as much of a surprise.
The men’s Olympic golf tournament had been scheduled for July 30-Aug. 2 at Kasumigaseki Country Club, with the women’s tournament taking place a week later at the same venue. Golf returned to the Summer Games at the 2020 Olympics in Rio. England's Justin Rose and South Korea's Inbee Park are the reigning gold medal winners.