International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach today (Wednesday) said that “sacrifices and compromises” will be needed from all stakeholders for Tokyo’s postponed Olympic and Paralympic Games, adding that its rescheduling will not be limited to summer months.
Bach spoke to reporters in a conference call one day after it was confirmed that the Olympics, initially scheduled for July 24 to August 9, would be postponed for the first time in peacetime years due to the global effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“These postponed Olympic Games will need sacrifices, will need compromises by all stakeholders,” Bach said. He added that a cancellation had been discussed, but stated: “It was very clear from the beginning that cancellation was not something the IOC would in any way favour.”
Moving forward, Bach said a taskforce, entitled ‘Here We Go’, will meet for the first time tomorrow, involving the 33 International Federations (IFs). He continued: “The first step, we have to see with them, to see what the options are. We also have to take into account the sports calendar around the Olympic Games.”
Both World Athletics and the International Swimming Federation (FINA) have already said they are prepared to move their 2021 world championships, scheduled for Eugene, Oregon on August 6-15 and Fukuoka, Japan from July 16 to August 1, respectively. Bach said the rescheduling “is not restricted just to summer months. All the options are on the table, before and including the summer of 2021”.
Bach concluded by stating: “We’re in an unprecedented situation and have an unprecedented challenge. We must find the best possible situation under the circumstances we are living in.”
Earlier this month, the Tokyo 2020 organising committee announced that all new permanent venues for the Games had been completed. The Tokyo Aquatics Centre was the final permanent venue to be completed on schedule at the end of February.