Japan falls back on 30 gold medal forecast at Tokyo 2021 Games
Japan is reversing a forecast of how many gold medals it will win at the Tokyo Olympics delayed by the pandemic which is expected to open next month.
Predicting performance in Tokyo could be a problem for many countries, not just Japan. The pandemic has disrupted qualifying events, disrupted training and raised questions about global doping tests.
The Japanese Olympic Committee said 30 gold medals were the goal just months before the pandemic struck. The president of the Japanese Olympic Committee now says that is no longer the goal.
As to whether it is important to get 30 (gold) medals, I should clearly answer no, “” Yasuhiro Yamashita said at a press conference on Monday.
He said the focus is now on the number of medals.
I think it’s a common understanding (at the Japanese Olympic Committee) that we want every athlete to be able to do their best and do their best, he added.
The United States and China are expected to finish first and second in the gold medal standings, as they did in Rio and London. China led the United States in the gold medal tally at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Japan was aiming very high for 30 gold medals.
Five years ago in Rio de Janeiro, Japan won 12 gold medals, and its best was 16 in 2004 in Athens and in 1964 when Tokyo was also the venue.
Countries usually get a medal rebound being the host country.
Japan will likely rely on seven core sports: swimming, judo, badminton, athletics, gymnastics, table tennis and wrestling. He also hopes to score in the five sports added for Tokyo: baseball, softball, sport climbing, karate and skateboarding.
The official cost of the Tokyo Olympics is $ 15.4 billion, although government audits have indicated it to be much higher. Everything but $ 6.7 billion is public money.
The pressure to host the games during the pandemic is largely financial for the Switzerland-based International Olympic Committee, a non-profit but highly commercial organization that derives 91% of its income from the sale of broadcast rights and sponsorship. Estimates suggest that a cancellation could cost the IOC $ 3-4 billion in broadcast rights revenue.
Japan has attributed around 14,500 deaths to COVID-19, good by global standards but worse than many Asian neighbors. About 9% of the Japanese have been fully immunized and the deployment has accelerated in recent weeks.
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga was at Tokyo’s Haneda Airport on Monday to draw attention to border protocols for athletes and others entering Japan for the Olympics and Paralympics.
About 15,400 athletes will arrive for the two events, in addition to tens of thousands more from over 200 nations and territories.
A member of the Ugandan Olympic contingent tested positive for the coronavirus last week upon arrival at Narita Airport in Tokyo. The rest of the squad were allowed to travel to a training camp near Osaka, where another member of the squad also tested positive.
Viral infections in Tokyo are on the rise again just a week after the state of emergency was lifted and fewer restrictions were put in place under a “near-emergency order that ends on July 11.”
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