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Will coronavirus affect Tokyo Olympics in July-Aug?

February 03, 2020 12:55 IST
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IMAGE: Olympics Minister Seiko Hashimoto said organisers are not considering cancelling the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which start on July 24. Photograph: Kyodo/via Reuters

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Monday that the government will keep in close touch with all relevant groups to ensure a virus outbreak does not have affect the Summer Olympics.


Olympics Minister Seiko Hashimoto said organisers are not considering cancelling the Olympics, which start on July 24.

“We will keep in close contact with everybody, including the International Olympic Committee and the World Health Organization, to take appropriate steps and keep the coronavirus from affecting the Olympics,” Abe told a parliamentary committee.

The death toll from the coronavirus epidemic in China rose to 361 on Monday and a growing number of countries are reporting cases. Japan has 20 confirmed cases, 17 of which were people who had been to China or are Chinese.

Sporting events affected due to coronavirus epidemic

The following is a list of international sports events affected by the coronavirus, which has killed over 300 people and infected more than 14,000 in China after it first emerged in Wuhan, Hubei province, late last year:


- The World Athletics Indoor Championships, which had been scheduled for Nanjing from March 13-15, were postponed until next year. World Athletics is working with organisers to settle on a date to host the biennial event in 2021.

- The Asian Athletics Association cancelled its February 12-13 indoor championships in Hangzhou.


- Australian officials are seeking to reschedule AFC Asian Champions League matches after their government imposed a travel ban on foreign nationals arriving from China.

Shanghai Shenhua and Shanghai SIPG were due to play Perth Glory and Sydney FC next week.

- A four-team women’s Olympic qualifying tournament involving China, Australia, Taiwan and Thailand was moved from Wuhan and rearranged to be held in Australia by the AFC.

Organisers were also forced to change the match schedule after China’s team, which arrived in Australia on January 29, was placed in quarantine in Brisbane until after February 5.

- The Chinese Football Association said domestic games at all levels would be postponed.


* The all-electric Formula E motor racing series abandoned plans for a race in Sanya on March 21.

The move puts Formula One in the spotlight, with Shanghai due to host the Chinese Grand Prix on April 19.


- The International Tennis Federation moved the Fed Cup Asia/Oceania Group I event featuring China, Taiwan, Indonesia, South Korea and Uzbekistan out of Dongguan to Nur-Sultan (formerly Astana) in Kazakhstan.

But the February 4-8 event was later postponed here after Kazakhstan declined to serve as substitute hosts.


- The February 25 to March 1 China Masters tournament in Hainan was postponed after several players withdrew. The BWF said it hoped the flagship Badminton Asia Championships could still go ahead in Wuhan from April 21-26.


- The International Olympic Committee announced Jordan as hosts of the boxing qualifiers for Asia and Oceania after an event in Wuhan was cancelled. It will now take place in Amman from March 3 to 11.


- The International Basketball Federation moved the February 6-9 Tokyo Olympics qualifiers to be held in Foshan to Belgrade.


- The elite women’s LPGA golf tour cancelled the March 5-8 Blue Bay tournament to be held on Hainan.


- Skiing’s governing body cancelled the February 15-16 World Cup in Yanqing.


- The first winter X-Games scheduled to be held in China, in the Hebei province from February 21-23, was postponed.

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