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22 hours ago, stryker said:

I was surprised it only took 24 hours before the IOC trotted out their resident spin doctor John Coates who put a spin out there that Fox News would be proud of.

:lol:

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22 hours ago, stryker said:

There is some hope here. Paris and Los Angeles have a chance to right the ship, at least temporarily before the true test comes with Brisbane. 

Yeah, Dr. Coates can definitely be on spin overdrive then. :lol:

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21 hours ago, StefanMUC said:

UEFA has apparently threatened to remove Munich from the list for EURO 2020 but the overwhelming majority here supports the stance of the city.

I’d forgotten all about Euro 2020. :huh:

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On 4/18/2021 at 1:39 PM, StefanMUC said:

This is still being debated as conditions in the countries vary. UEFA and DFB have put enormous pressure on Munich to guarantee spectators with a deadline tomorrow, I think. But the city is not willing to give in to demands at this point. Bundesliga matches are still played in empty arenas and will most likely do so for the remaining matches.

UEFA has apparently threatened to remove Munich from the list for EURO 2020 but the overwhelming majority here supports the stance of the city.

News I've seen today say Munich and Dublin have been been given until Friday to submit their attendance plan to UEFA.  The same story said London wants (hopes?) for a full stadium for the final on July 11.

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Decision on domestic spectators for Tokyo Olympics may come in June - Mainichi

A decision on limits for domestic spectators for the Tokyo Olympics may not be made until June, the month before the scheduled start of the games, the Mainichi newspaper reported on Tuesday.

A decision that foreign spectators would not be allowed was made in March, and the decision on the number of domestic spectators had been widely expected in April.

The games were put off for a year due to the coronavirus pandemic which is surging again in Japan.

Date:April 20,2021

News source:Reuters

Link to this article:https://www.reuters.com/lifestyle/sports/decision-domestic-spectators-tokyo-olympics-may-come-june-mainichi-2021-04-20/

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On 4/15/2021 at 6:37 PM, kevzz said:

I really think the Tokyo Games should be cancelled, or at least postponed to 2032 as some reported to be an option.

First, Covid situation is still uncertain in Japan which might rise again in the coming months. Safety concerns for the athletes, media and locals.

Secondly, it is not going to feel the same without international supporters and socially distances spectators. 

Thirdly, I suspect for many athletes, they won't be able to train in their 100% capacity due to the various lockdowns which is also unfair to athletes from countries where lockdown restrictions are more harsh. Hence this Games will not see athletes compete to their best ability. 

Lastly, I don't think the world is in the mood to follow the Games to be honest when we are still fighting this pandemic. I for one couldn't care less about the Olympics now. We need to get this crisis over before the world can come together again.

 

I agree

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This is just sad at this point. Trying to delay the inevitable and going aimless like a headless chicken. The 2021 Universiade was already moved to 2022 and that was going to be held in China which supossedly had the virus under control. I don't think history books are going to look back at this very kindly, to be honest. Its hard for me to enjoy the torch relay despite the happy faces and enthusiasm of some spectators who appear to be having a good time, due to what's actually happening behind the scenes.

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As I've said elsewhere the recent number of new daily cases in Japan is roughly the same as here in Pennsylvania, and we have  a tenth of the population of Japan. I would love to have Japan's percentage and it just seems ridiculous that people want to call this off when I see what is going on here and elsewhere in our country.

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2 hours ago, Ikarus360 said:

This is just sad at this point. Trying to delay the inevitable and going aimless like a headless chicken. The 2021 Universiade was already moved to 2022 and that was going to be held in China which supossedly had the virus under control. I don't think history books are going to look back at this very kindly, to be honest. Its hard for me to enjoy the torch relay despite the happy faces and enthusiasm of some spectators who appear to be having a good time, due to what's actually happening behind the scenes.

Here's the way I'm looking at this.  A lot of what normally makes the Olympics so special is going to be missing.  And what should be a very cool stretch with 2 Olympics in less than 7 months has an aura at times of "let's just get this over with"

It is an extremely unfortunate held the Japanese have been dealt here.  Because this should have been a wonderful show for them to put on, but instead they're caught in a once-in-a-century pandemic.  And the optics of this as ugly as hell.  But rest assured there will be an Olympics, even if it has to happen behind closed doors.  Because you know what's worse than the optics of having the Olympics?  The optics of deciding this late in the game to not have the Olympics.

2 hours ago, BTHarner said:

As I've said elsewhere the recent number of new daily cases in Japan is roughly the same as here in Pennsylvania, and we have  a tenth of the population of Japan. I would love to have Japan's percentage and it just seems ridiculous that people want to call this off when I see what is going on here and elsewhere in our country.

I completely get the hesitation and frustration on the part of the Japanese citizens at this point.  Sure, their virus numbers are pretty tame compared to what we're dealing with here, but their leadership seem to be more concerned at this point with ensuring the Olympics go on than the long term health of their citizens.  And understandably they don't want athletes from all other the world to descend upon their country, even with health and safety protocols in place.  A lot of the usual pomp and circumstance could seem out of place if we're still in the clutches of the pandemic, even if we're slowing starting to make our way out of it.

That all said, there's 2 options at this point.. have an Olympics this summer, as half-hearted as it's likely to look.  Or don't have an Olympics at all and wait another 3 years (which will undoubtedly sour Japan on the Olympics for a long time to come).  I'm not overly concerned about the Olympics being a COVID super-spreader event.  I'm just upset that the sports world is managing to function throughout much of the world and there's still this sentiment of "OMG, how can anyone still think there will be an Olympics"

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19 hours ago, Ikarus360 said:

This is just sad at this point. Trying to delay the inevitable and going aimless like a headless chicken. The 2021 Universiade was already moved to 2022 and that was going to be held in China which supossedly had the virus under control. I don't think history books are going to look back at this very kindly, to be honest. Its hard for me to enjoy the torch relay despite the happy faces and enthusiasm of some spectators who appear to be having a good time, due to what's actually happening behind the scenes.

Thomas Bach, today: “We really think we are undertaking all the right efforts to minimize the (coronavirus) risk as much as you can minimize the risk in such a situation. The Olympic Village will be a different Olympic Village, yes, but it will be a pretty safe place."  and "Tokyo continues to be the best prepared Olympic city ever."

Well, I, for one, am reassured.

 

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1 hour ago, StefanMUC said:

LOL, I am not. "pretty safe" is actually a very vague statement that can mean all and nothing.

Of course he has to spread confidence, but reassuring, this is not.

Well, some people if Bach says anything will think the only thing he's spreading is the virus.

I saw a couple of posts on Twitter talking about how the IOC is largely passing the buck to the organizers and that it's on them to put together all the safety protocols necessary.  I do agree to the point that if there's a country that has to take on this burden, that Japan is a good place to be (could you imagine if this happened before the Rio Olympics?)  Still, it's next to impossible to know how this is all going to go.  How many Olympians will follow all the necessary measures designed to keep them and their fellow athletes safe?  And what happened if there is an outbreak somewhere?  Much harder than a normal event to simply postpone to a later point in time.

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It's certainly not my place to belittle anybody's concerns, but this is our new reality and it will never completely go away. We can't, however, live in a perpetual state of fear and paralysis. This may go well or it may not. If it goes well, it could broaden our horizons and show the world how to better cope with life as it stands. If we don't try, we might as well cancel the Olympics and other multi-sport events for the foreseeable future. 

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4 hours ago, BTHarner said:

It's certainly not my place to belittle anybody's concerns, but this is our new reality and it will never completely go away. We can't, however, live in a perpetual state of fear and paralysis. This may go well or it may not. If it goes well, it could broaden our horizons and show the world how to better cope with life as it stands. If we don't try, we might as well cancel the Olympics and other multi-sport events for the foreseeable future. 

Exercising caution is not living "in a perpetual state of fear and paralysis."  Think about how much money is spent on security at the Olympics.  Most people would agree it's a very necessary expense, but it's not done out of fear.  It's done out of preparedness in order to prevent problems from happening.  That's how we need to approach sports in the COVID world, especially at this point in time where we are very much still in the throes of the pandemic.

The sports world had to completely shut down last spring because no one really knew how to manage the virus and what might happen if we were playing games.  A year later, we have much better learned to figure out how to co-exist with COVID.  We all know here what a massive task it is to organize and manage an Olympics, so imagine how much more difficult that whole process is now with COVID layered on top of that.  And imagine the fallout if it doesn't go well? 

The sports leagues and events best able to operate right now are the ones with the money and resources to put health and safety measures in place.  So yes, the 2021 Universiade got postponed is less a function of that event being less safe than the Olympics, but more that they may not be able to put protocols in place to keep everyone safe. 

Let's cut Japan a little slack here that they're pushing forward with this and taking a lot of risk without as much of the reward as they were expecting.  I can't speak for Japanese citizens.  I don't know if they're fearful of people bringing the virus to their country.  But I can totally understand if they're asking the question of whether or not the Olympics is getting in the way of the country's ability to battle COVID.

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But we have had at least 7-8 months of international sports going on. Most of the athletes and teams have been traveling. Most are used to protocols. Many athletes have actually had the virus. Tokyo's residents really are not in danger. 

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20 minutes ago, AmaniS said:

But we have had at least 7-8 months of international sports going on. Most of the athletes and teams have been traveling. Most are used to protocols. Many athletes have actually had the virus. Tokyo's residents really are not in danger. 

It's not so much about them being in danger.  It's about the Japanese government placing the well-being of the Olympics ahead of the well-being of their citizens.  A few months ago, I would have figured that Japan would be at the forefront of the vaccinations because it would help their cause for the Olympics.  That didn't happen, so I can understand where their citizens are a little uneasy right now

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In theory, we have had a year to get used to protocols, understand how the science works through the process, and do this safely. If I were involved in this process, I’d be advising that I think Tokyo can pull this off using the right measures.

In practice, we have a substantial subset of several populations who think they know better than scientists and are off in their own reality. If the people of Japan were to ask me if those people can be kept away, I could answer that such people are far less likely to make the trip, but I couldn’t be 100% confident that some athletes wouldn’t go rogue.

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8 hours ago, Bull Schmidt said:

In theory, we have had a year to get used to protocols, understand how the science works through the process, and do this safely. If I were involved in this process, I’d be advising that I think Tokyo can pull this off using the right measures.

In practice, we have a substantial subset of several populations who think they know better than scientists and are off in their own reality. If the people of Japan were to ask me if those people can be kept away, I could answer that such people are far less likely to make the trip, but I couldn’t be 100% confident that some athletes wouldn’t go rogue.

The issue isn't about athletes going rogue. Again, Japanese citizens aren't concerned that the Olympics will turn into a super-spreader event.  They're concerned their government is putting the welfare of the Olympics and olympians ahead of them.  At this point, the folks in Japan don't want to hear what outsiders think and how outsiders would advise them.  They want assurances that hosting the Olympics will not hamper the country's effort to fight and address the pandemic.  And I'm starting to understand more and more why that's a concern for them.

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On 4/22/2021 at 8:38 AM, Triplecast said:

His statement sounds like that of a dreamer. The 3rd state of emergency in Tokyo is temporary because of the current increase of infected people in metropolis. Olympic period overlaps summer vacation in Japan(much longer than "Golden Week").

 

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Tokyo Olympic organizers brace for no spectators

The organizing body of the Tokyo Olympics is prepared for the possibility of holding this summer's global sporting event without spectators as the coronavirus pandemic continues to rage, the committee's president said Wednesday.

"If the situation is expected to cause problems for the medical system, in order to put the highest priority on safety and security, there may come a time when we have to decide to go ahead with no spectators," Seiko Hashimoto said after attending a virtual meeting with other organizers of the Tokyo Games.

During the five-party meeting, also attended by International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, the organizers agreed to make a final decision in June regarding spectator numbers at venues, due to the need to closely monitor the pandemic.

While the organizers have already decided to bar spectators from overseas, Hashimoto told a press conference it will be "extremely difficult" to stage the Olympics and Paralympics in front of full crowds if the current infection situation in Japan does not improve, adding she hopes to see as many people as possible in the stands.

The five parties, including the International Paralympic Committee and the central and Tokyo metropolitan governments, were planning to draw up a basic policy regarding domestic spectators by the end of this month.

But they delayed the decision as highly contagious variants of the virus have been spreading rapidly in the host nation.

The Japanese organizers have been studying several possibilities, including limiting the number of spectators to 50 percent of venue capacity and only allowing the entry of people who have already purchased tickets, according to officials with knowledge of the planning.

The final decision regarding the Olympics will be in line with the Japanese government's policy regarding the upper limit of spectators at sports events.

As part of efforts to ensure the safety of the games, the organizers also decided during the meeting to test all participating athletes for the virus on a daily basis in principle, using saliva samples.

According to the updated version of the organizers' "playbook" for athletes released Wednesday, participants from overseas will need to take tests on two separate days within 96 hours of their departure time.

The rulebook also said each delegation needs to appoint liaison officers who will be responsible for working with the local organizers and Japanese health authorities to ensure that team members follow all health and safety restrictions.

"The IOC is fully committed to the successful and safe delivery of the Olympic and Paralympic Games Tokyo 2020," Bach said in his opening remarks at the online meeting, adding they will "strictly enforce" COVID-19 rules.

While Japan's accumulative total of over 583,000 confirmed COVID-19 infections are fewer than many other countries, media polls have repeatedly shown that a majority of the Japanese people are not in favor of hosting the games this summer following a one-year postponement.

The organizers have emphasized the importance of testing athletes and visiting officials frequently to detect infections at an early stage and prevent the games from becoming a super-spreader event.

However, some medical experts have voiced concerns over staging the games at this juncture when new mutants of the virus are spreading in many countries, and when the strain on Japan's medical system has been increasing.

On Wednesday, a senior Cabinet official said the Japanese organizers will secure about 30 hospitals capable of accepting athletes and officials during the Olympics.

Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga has vowed to take steps to ensure the Tokyo Games are "safe and secure," but he has been unsuccessful in bringing down infections.

Tokyo and several prefectures are under a third state of emergency until May 11 due to a recent spike in infections. The capital on Wednesday confirmed 925 cases of the virus, the highest figure since Jan. 28.

Under the emergency that took effect Sunday, large commercial facilities, theme parks, karaoke establishments and restaurants serving alcohol have been asked to close.

Meanwhile, Japan's vaccine rollout, which has been criticized as too slow, only began for those aged 65 and over earlier this month, and it is impossible for much of the general public to be inoculated by the start of the Olympics on July 23.

The IOC and the Tokyo organizing committee have not made vaccination a requirement for athletes and officials. But the IOC has recommended they receive shots to protect the health of the participants and the Japanese public.

Date:April 28,2021

News source:Kyodo News

Link to this article:https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2021/04/695a75baa2ec-japan-to-test-all-olympic-athletes-for-covid-on-daily-basis.html

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