Although the head of the International Olympic Committee has proclaimed the need for flexibility in the rescheduling of the 2020 Tokyo Games, one of his top aides points to a conventional date in the summer of 2021.
John Coates told the Japanese newspaper Yomiuri on Thursday that his IOC coordination commission, which works closely with Tokyo organizers, hopes to create an opening in July-August.
“We more or less want to complete the dates in four weeks,” Coates was quoted as saying.
Olympic leaders must create an agreement that includes, among other things, Japanese officials, international sports federations and broadcasters.
The midsummer spot would fit well between two Grand Slam tournaments in tennis – Wimbledon and U.S. Open – but would conflict with major events in other sports. Swimming is scheduled to begin its World Cup on July 16 with tracks following the second week of August.
Shortly after Tuesday’s announcement that the Olympics would be postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, the international track associations said it had already begun discussing a shift with organizers in Eugene, Ore, where its championships will be held.
Swimming officials issued a similar statement. The Sports Federation said it would talk to organizers of the 2021 World Cup in Fukuoka, Japan, “to determine flexibility around the competition date, if needed and in accordance with the IOC.”
The Tokyo Games were originally scheduled to begin on July 24. Earlier this week, IOC President Thomas Bach said they may not be rescheduled this summer.
“All options are on the table,” Bach told reporters.