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Tokyo Olympic organizers will plan to host 18 test events

A minimum of 4 of the take a look at occasions will contain athletes from overseas. They embrace swimming, gymnastics, diving and volleyball.

The postponed Tokyo Olympics are getting a kickstart.

Native organizers on Friday introduced a sequence of 18 take a look at occasions set to start in March and run into Might.

The Tokyo Olympics are set to open on July 23, 2021, after being postponed eight months in the past due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The announcement in a web based information convention got here the identical day that the Tokyo Metropolitan Authorities reported a one-day document of 570 new coronavirus infections within the capital.

Though Japan has dealt with the pandemic higher than most international locations, instances have been surging just lately with about 2,000 deaths attributed to COVID-19 in a rustic of 125 million.

Officers mentioned at the very least 4 of the take a look at occasions will contain athletes from overseas, together with assessments in swimming, gymnastics, diving and volleyball.

A observe and subject meet on Might 9 on the new Nationwide Stadium is listed as take a look at occasion. It’s not clear if athletes from overseas will take part.

Hidemasa Nakamura, the video games supply officer, mentioned not one of the take a look at occasions will enable followers from overseas, though some occasions will allow an unspecified variety of followers from Japan.

“No, we won’t have spectators from overseas,” Nakamura mentioned.

A number of of the occasions won’t even contain athletes, testing “operations” solely as a strategy to reduce on spending.

Japan has held sports activities occasions just lately with followers. The ultimate sport of the Japan Collection {of professional} baseball this week drew about 19,000 followers in a 38,000-seat stadium in Fukuoka. And some thousand followers have been allowed to attend a world gymnastics occasion earlier this month in Tokyo.

“As for the variety of spectators, we now have to take the rules of the Japanese authorities into consideration,” mentioned Yasuo Mori, who works with Nakamura on video games supply.

The announcement by the Tokyo organizing committee is the most recent in a marketing campaign over the past a number of months to persuade a world viewers, sponsors and the Japanese public that the Olympics and Paralympics will happen regardless of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Organizers are to announce a “toolbox” of preliminary countermeasures subsequent month towards COVID-19, though they’re prone to be obscure and topic to many modifications going into subsequent 12 months.

Worldwide Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach, who was in Tokyo this month to speak up the video games, acknowledged a lot of the planning hinges across the availability of vaccines and speedy testing.

He mentioned they weren’t a “silver bullet” however actually could be a assist together with social distancing, masks and near-quarantine circumstances within the Athletes Village.

Bach mentioned athletes wouldn’t be required to take a vaccine. He mentioned younger Olympic athletes weren’t a precedence forward of hundreds of thousands of well being care employees, the aged and different susceptible populations.

Bach urged the IOC would cowl among the value of the vaccine, however he gave no particulars as the price continues to climb due to the postponement.

Tokyo says it’s formally spending $12.6 billion to prepare the Olympics, though a authorities audit final 12 months mentioned it was in all probability twice that a lot.

Video games officers say a full complement of 11,000 Olympic athletes and 4,400 Paralympic athletes might be allowed into Japan, accompanied by ten of hundreds of officers, judges, VIPs, sponsors, media and broadcasters.

Extra AP sports activities: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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