Tokyo 2020 Round-Up: Olympic Champ Mo Farah Misses Qualification, Won’t Retire

With the Olympic Games set to kick off at the end of July, preparations for the Games are beginning in all sports, not just in swimming. In this series, SwimSwam looks at some of the leading news from outside of swimming as athletes around the world continue to prepare and qualify for the rescheduled Olympic Games which are due to begin in Tokyo on July 23rd, and Paralympic Games, which are scheduled to begin August 24th.

Olympic Champ Mo Farah Misses Out Of Qualification, Says He Won’t Retire

Four-time Olympic champion Mo Farah has said he won’t be retiring after he missed out on Olympic qualification in his main event, the 10,000m.

The 38-year-old Briton is the reigning champion in both the 5,000m and 10,000m events from the London 2012 and Rio 2016 Olympics, but will not be defending his titles in Tokyo.

He missed the qualification time for the 10,000m race by 19 seconds while competing at the British Championships in Manchester, England.

While speaking to Talksport after the race, he said: “At the moment in my career, I feel like I’m not finished yet,” he told Talksport.

“I know I can do it and I will not end it like this. I want to end it with something massive. Although obviously nothing is going to be as big as the Olympics, I want to come back out and do something great.”

He continued, emphasising that overcoming hurdles is part of what makes him a ‘champion’.

“That’s what makes us champions. You have to continue, you have to go over many hurdles and you have to push on. At the moment, it’s tough, but I will continue. You’ll see that smile again.”

Acknowledging his disappointment, he continued: “As a sportsman you’ve just got to get a hold of it, you’ve got to own it, move on and see what you can do – and I know I can do more, that’s the frustrating part.

“The Olympics only come around every four years and when the opportunity comes you’ve got to take it. But this is the reality now, I’m not going. I’m so disappointed.”

USA Basketball Announces Men’s Olympic Team

The 12-man USA Olympic basketball team was announced this week which sees now three-time Olympian Kevin Durant at the helm.

The 12-man team is:

  • Bam Adebayo
  • Kevin Durant
  • Bradley Beal
  • Devin Brooker
  • Jerami Grant
  • Draymond Green
  • Jrue Holiday
  • Zach LaVine
  • Damian Lillard
  • Kevin Love
  • Khris Middleton
  • Jayson Tatum

Of the team – who are firm favourites to secure gold at this year’s Games – Durant, Love, and Green have all competed at an Olympic Games before.

If the team is successful in their bid for a win it would be the fourth consecutive Olympic gold for the men’s US basketball team.

Tennis Stars Continue To Withdraw From Games

A flurry of tennis aces have removed their names from the Olympic conversation less than one month ahead of the Games are set to begin.

Among them are Rafael NadalSerena WilliamsSimona HalepDominic ThiemStan Wawrinka, and Denis Shapovalov.

Halep and Shapovalov are the latest players to declare they won’t be participating with both individuals citing injuries as the reason behind their decisions.

Halep is recovering from a calf injury which she says won’t be healed in time for the event, while Wawrinka has undergone surgery on his left foot which leaves him out of Olympic contention.

Halep was due to be the flag bearer for her native Romania at the upcoming Games which begin on July 23rd.

The pair join a steadily growing list of tennis players to make the same announcement. Thiem has ruled himself out as he looks to defend his US Open title later this year, while Nadal’s decision stems from a desire to prioritise his health and prolong his career.

Four-time Olympic champion Serena Williams has said that the tricky practicalities of taking her daughter Olympia to the Games have been one of the main factors in her decision to withdraw.

Separately, Williams has also been forced to withdraw from ongoing competition Wimbledon 2021 due to injury.

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Bobo Gigi
2 years ago

Surprising you didn’t talk about the amazing week of athletics in Eugene. World records. Meet records. World junior and youth records.
Omaha looked a little bit pale in comparison.
Since I watch the sport as closely as swimming, since the late 90s/early 2000s, on paper it’s probably the best US athletics team sent to olympic games I’ve ever seen. They are strong on the track and in many field events. I only wonder if many athletes have not peaked too early. Let’s see now if most of the qualifiers will be able to repeat their performances. Especially the few collegians qualified who compete since January. If the US team is able to repeat the same kind of performances… Read more »

2 years ago

This article showed up on my Google news feed and I read the whole thing and only realized when I got down to this section that it was posted on SwimSwam. Hahaha

2 years ago

I’ll say it again ….. when Olympic Gold means not much to a sport, then that sport should not be in the Olympics. Here’s looking at you tennis and golf

Reply to  Samesame
2 years ago

Well it probably doesn’t mean much to Rafael Nadal who already has one and has to save himself for the slam race. Whereas it probably means a ton to Djokovic

Corn Pop
Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

I’d say so . He practiced in an empty pool during the war years.

Awsi Dooger
Reply to  Samesame
2 years ago

There are other examples. Steffi Graf has always said the Olympics were the favorite event of her career. Roger Federer cried on the medal stand while accepting a medal for doubles. Danielle Kang said last week that she cried last year when the Olympics were postponed, because her lifetime dream was to be an Olympian and now she’d have to qualify again in 2021 after already qualifying in 2020. She said she was checking the Rolex World Rankings constantly to see where she stood, because that’s the criteria. She did make it again. Justin Rose said the highlight of his career was winning the gold medal in Rio. Likewise with women’s gold medalist Inbee Park. In fact, Inbee was like… Read more »

Reply to  Samesame
2 years ago

And basketball and men’s hockey.

Reply to  Stinky
2 years ago

Men’s hockey Olympic medals are very treasured in Australia. Just haven’t won the gold since Athens I think

2 years ago

Mo Farah, Olympic champion at 5000 and 10000 freestyle.

2 years ago

Thanks for the Olympic updates

2 years ago

I didn’t even know Farah had returned to track events. He said after 2016 he was going to exclusively race marathons and other road races.

Awsi Dooger
Reply to  frug
2 years ago

He did run marathons, with decent success but eventually he realized he couldn’t match someone like Kipchoge. Marathons are not always tactical events, the style that Farah prefers. He made a late surprising return to the track but never really looked like he would be a major factor in Tokyo. There are several guys who now take out those races in rapid fashion and make them like a time trial. Same thing on the women’s side with athletes like Sifan Hassan. It is no longer dawdle then kick

Reply to  Awsi Dooger
2 years ago

Excellent – I can’t stand the dawdle and kick

2 years ago

Thought this was SwimSwam

Reply to  LOL
2 years ago

Agree. Who cares about pro tennis

Reply to  Doconc
2 years ago

no no no, see y’all misunderstood. Doconc doesn’t actually object to other Olympic sports being on SS, he just doesn’t like the Williams sisters and the minorities that are taking over pro tennis being too woke for his liking.

It’s not a SS objection, it’s a political objection.

Reply to  LOL
2 years ago

I dunno. I definitely wouldnt want NFL or NBA etc updates on here, and sometimes even the water polo news bothers me a little, but the OLYMPICS are the best moment ever for a swim fan! The other sports just add to the excitement of the “main event”
keep it up, swimswam

Last edited 2 years ago by Penguin
Jay Ryan
Reply to  LOL
2 years ago