How the Pandemic Affected the 2020 Olympics

The Olympic Games, otherwise known as the Olympics is the world’s foremost sporting event which features thousands of athletes from over 200 participating nations.

The last summer Olympic Games took place in 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The latest edition of the event will take place in Tokyo, Japan, after the city won the bid to host the games on September 7th, 2013, at the 125th Session of the International Olympic Committee in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

We’ll be looking at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, the seemingly unbreakable records, the challenges the organizers have faced and its possible impact on the athletes.

There's no doubt that the 2020 Tokyo Olympics will be a spectacle, as Japan is known for its technological prowess and has intensified efforts to make the games memorable.

However, the Tokyo 2020 Olympics would be missing something exceptional; the blistering performance of the Jamaican athlete: Usain Bolt, who graced the tracks, winning many medals and setting numerous records.

Tokyo 2020 is the first Olympic Games since Bolt’s retirement in 2017.

The ever-enthusiastic Usain Bolt holds the world record for the 100m race, where he ran an impressive 9.58 seconds. The record is one that athletes would be looking to break in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Talking about setting records. South African Athlete, Wayde van Niekerk, broke a 17-year-old record in the last Olympic Games. Micheal Johnson, who previously held the 400m record, was bested by Wayde van Niekerk’s phenomenal run in 43.03seconds.

Now! That is a record we all would be looking forward to. Would it be broken once again in this year’s Olympics? Or are we looking at another 17 years of failed trials?

It gets even better,

A 24-year old record was also broken in the women’s 10,000 meters race, when Almaz Ayana of Ethiopia crossed the finish line in 29 mins 17.46 seconds, breaking China’s Wang Junxia 29mins 31.79seconds mark.

Amazing! It seems athletes are out to break long-standing records and set new ones. Perhaps it’s only a matter of time before we witness the breaking of late Florence Griffith Joyner’s 100m record-dash of 10.62 seconds.

While many have tipped Jamaica's Fraser-Pryce to break the record due to her 10.75 seconds stint from the London Olympics 100-meter race. 

Tokyo 2020 presents another opportunity for Fraser-Pryce to have another go at the late Flo-Jo’s record.

Which record do you think will be broken at the Olympics? Who are tipping to Break them? Let us know in the comments?

Away from breaking records, the Jamaican men’s team would be looking to defend its 4 x 100meters relay medal in this year's Olympics. Similarly, the USA’s men’s team would aim to defend its 4 x 400meters relay medal in Tokyo 2020.

It is also worthy of note that Team Jamaica finished closely behind Team USA in the 4 x 400meters men’s relay race.

The 4 x 400meters men’s relay is one event in the Olympic games that’ll have you sitting on the edge of your seat with your jaw dropped. However, with the quality of athletes that turn up at the Olympics, it is not impossible to see an underdog emerge winners.

Would Team USA retain its medal? Do you think the Jamaicans would run away with it this time? Let’s know in the comments.

The spotlight would also be on the fantastic Caster Semenya of South Africa. The athlete holds the 800m race medal in the women’s race for the just-concluded Olympics. The female athlete who is a delight to watch would look to defend her medal in Tokyo 2020. Rumor has it that she is the fan’s favorite.

The four-time Olympic Gold Medal champion: Mo Farah of Great Britain, holds the most recent medal for the 5,000 and 10,000 meters race. The athlete who emerged winner in the Djibouti half-marathon has hinted he would not participate in the 5,000 meters race; instead, defending his 10,000 meters medal is more important. 

Just like the Olympics, The Boston marathon is an age long competition. Use the link above to learn about the history of the Boston Marathon

The 2020 Summer Olympic Games will be the second time Japan hosts the games. After hosting the Olympics for the first time in Tokyo in 1964. This makes Tokyo the first Asian city to host the Olympic games twice.

The President of the International Olympic Committee: Thomas Bach praised Tokyo’s preparation for the Olympics with just a year left, commending the pace of work, ticket sales, and the level of participation from volunteers.

However, in a twist of events, the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics, also known as the 32nd Olympiad Games, would be held in 2021. Quite strange, don’t you think?

The global COVID-19 outbreak in January 2020 raised safety concerns for athletes and visitors to the Olympic games, and preparations to have the games held that year were suspended indefinitely.

Nevertheless, the Tokyo Organizing committee insisted that it was monitoring the spread of the virus to contain its effect on the preparation for the games.

Amidst intense calls from various sporting bodies and athletes to postpone the event, the Tokyo Organizing Committee released a statement stating that preparation was ongoing and the Tokyo 2020 Olympics would continue as planned.

On 24 March 2020, via a joint statement between the Tokyo Organizing Committee and the International Olympic Committee, the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games were postponed to the summer of 2021.

However, it appears that the Tokyo Summer Olympics will go ahead this year. Despite a year-long delay, the rescheduled event would be held between 23 July to 8 August 2021, making it the first Olympic event to be postponed rather than canceled.

It was, however, agreed that the 32nd Olympic Games would still be tagged “Tokyo 2020”, owing to the investment in preparation and branding.

The Tokyo Organizing Committee is bent on holding the Games. The committee states the significance to the Olympics, Japan’s people, and the billions spent in preparation as reasons to continue with the preparations. 

Shinzo Abe, the Japanese Prime Minister, referred to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic games as the “Recovery Games.” He believes it would help the world see the impact of the tsunami in Japan and help kick off a process of rebuilding.

The Olympics Games are known to write its story, springing surprises as the event unfolds. Perhaps we might be in for a shocker.

Do you think preparations for the Olympics should continue despite the cases of COVID-19 around the world? Who are you tipping to go all out and win the medals on the tracks of the Tokyo 2020 Olympics? What records would you love to see broken? Tell us in the comments section.

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