Japanese Virology Expert Questions Whether Games Can Be Held In 2021

Per The Japan Times, Japanese virology expert Kentaro Iwata has warned that, should there be a new COVID-19 outbreak in the run-up to the delayed Tokyo 2020 Games, hosting the event in the summer of 2021 might not be doable.

Iwata, who has criticized the country’s response to COVID-19, warned Monday that he is “pessimistic” over whether it will be possible to hold the postponed Olympics even in 2021.

“To be honest with you I don’t think the Olympics is likely to be held next year,” Iwata said. “Holding (the) Olympics needs two conditions: one, controlling COVID-19 in Japan and (two) controlling COVID-19 everywhere — because you have to invite the athletes and the audience from all over the world.”

Iwata rather suggests that helping factors in hosting the Games next summer include reducing the number of participating athletes or not allowing fans to enter athletic venues.

“Japan might be able to control this disease by next summer, I wish we could, but I don’t think that would happen everywhere on Earth, so in this regard I’m very pessimistic about holding the Olympics Games next summer” Iwata added.

Japan, along with the International Olympic Committee, rescheduled the Games that would’ve taken off on July of this summer to follow a similar timeframe in the summer of 2021, kicking off Jul. 24 and coming to a close Aug. 8. Following suit, the deadline for achieving qualification times had been extended until June 29, 2021.

For swimming, that means organizers will attempt to stick to the original 2020 plan to run heats in the evenings and finals in the mornings. The lineup of events should remain roughly the same as well, though nothing is officialized yet.

FINA is currently reviewing the dates of its 2021 FINA World Championships and FINA World Masters Championships in Fukuoka (JPN), originally slated to run Jul. 16 through Aug. 1.

Earlier last week, Tokyo 2020 spokesperson Masa Takaya told journalists that there is “no Plan B,” according to the report.

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Yuri
5 months ago

We have to stop this !! The mortality rate is the same of a flu ( official data ), the virus is strong only in polluted environments ( Wuhan in China, Madrid in Spain, New York in US or Lombardy in Italy ). In 99% of the places it’s really like a flu. If you don’t believe me, just spend 10 minutes of your time to check official data compared to how many people died last year in the same time period. You would see the truth, not the one of the medias. 10 minutes of your time, do a favour to yourself and take the red pill.

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Yuri
5 months ago

Not even close, my man.

SwimMomForever
Reply to  Yuri
5 months ago

OMG. Yuri, read the scientific journals. Dr. Fauci says this is 10-20 times more lethal than the flu. It is much worse.

Yuri
Reply to  SwimMomForever
5 months ago

Exactly, you are listening to what dr. Fauci SAYS, I’m listening to official data about last year’s deaths, which are not less than 2020′.

BKP
Reply to  Yuri
4 months ago

Way too soon to form a convincing argument on that take. We’ve seen, in just this past month, major errors in the modeling, reporting, and testing.
When did Fauci predict that it is “10-20” times more lethal than the flu? That’s important since he has been fairly good at adjusting his professional opinion on the disease as more data comes in (remember, he stated back in Feb that this disease would not pose a threat to the states, but this was based on the data – bad data – that he had at that time…)
My guess is that he would now be scaling back from the “10-20” times prediction if this was in fact what he stated…

BKP
Reply to  Yuri
4 months ago

More recent studies are leaning to a lower mortality rate, but still not enough data (particularly the recent antibody/serology tests). Still lots of questions that need to be answered.

Swimmom
Reply to  Yuri
4 months ago

54,000+ people did not die from the flu last year in March & April!

Steve Nolan
5 months ago

“Japan might be able to control this disease by next summer, I wish we could, but I don’t think that would happen everywhere on Earth, so in this regard I’m very pessimistic about holding the Olympics Games next summer” Iwata added.

This is….a very good point. The Olympics are basically an ideal way to re-seed the virus throughout the world.

BKP
Reply to  Steve Nolan
4 months ago

Fortunately we are seeing treatments and vaccines progressing much faster with this outbreak as compared to others in the past! Enough perhaps that we can be more optimistic about a ’21 summer games!

Although I am Team USA all the way, if the world has to wait until 2022 then we will see the parity in the men’s events go to zero when Dean Farris wins all the individual golds!😁😉

Corn Pop
5 months ago

On a 0-10 scale I’d put the possibility as 3 . There is also the move to take 2022 away from Beijing . Things are going to get very nasty exactly when Tokyo needs to find goodwill & amity both at home & globally . Not seeing any in our current leaders nor in the fear of foreigners by citizenry.