Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has reached an agreement with the International Olympic Committee to postpone the games until 2021.
The announcement comes after a meeting on Tuesday between Abe and IOC chief Thomas Bach amid the global coronavirus pandemic.
‘I proposed to postpone for about a year and [IOC] president Thomas Bach responded with 100% agreement,’ Abe said.
Despite several tournaments and sporting events around the world being either postponed or cancelled entirely, the IOC had initially held off on a decision in hope of the Olympics continuing as scheduled.
However, their decision led to mounting pressure as Team Canada, Team Australia and Team Britain announced that they would not be sending any athletes to Tokyo, should the Games go ahead.
The Blitzboks and 11 other men’s teams that compete on the World Rugby Sevens circuit, were set to contest for Olympic gold at the 2020 Games in Tokyo later this year. Twelve women’s sevens teams were also set to play at the Olympics.
This is the first time that the Games have been postponed during peace time.
Photo: Carl Court/Getty Images
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