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The 2020 Olympics, scheduled for this summer in Tokyo, will be postponed, Veteran International Olympic Committee member Dick Pound told USA TODAY Sports. The event likely will take place in 2021, according to the report.
This comes after the International Olympic Committee announced Sunday that it set a mid-April deadline to determine if the 2020 Games should be held as scheduled.
“It will come in stages,” Pound told USA Today. “We will postpone this and begin to deal with all the ramifications of moving this, which are immense.”
Both Canada and Australia had already announced they would not participate if the Tokyo Games were held as scheduled.
MassLive.com’s Matt Vautour called for the Olympics to be postponed earlier Monday. As Vautour pointed out in his column, “Postponing now will certainly hurt some athletes. Some will have to spend another year accumulating personal financial debt to be able to train. Some athletes, boxers most notably, might be unwilling to wait, choosing to turn pro and work toward their professional careers. Others who might have been medal caliber in 2020 will be older or get injured between now and then.
“That’s unfortunate, but it unquestionably beats the alternative,” Vautour continued. “Waiting until next month isn’t going to provide enough information to make anyone sure the games will be safe. No need to waste that time.”
The coronavirus outbreak has led to all major sports leagues, including the NBA, MLB and NHL, suspending their seasons. The NCAA canceled both the men’s and women’s March Madness tournaments.