Swim Poll of the Week: What Should the IOC do if the Olympics Cannot be Held in Tokyo Because of Coronavirus Outbreak?

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This is the Swim Poll of the Week for Thursday, March 5, 2020, sponsored by Strechcordz Swim Training Products. In our last poll, we wanted to know: What Should the IOC do if the Olympics Cannot be Held in Tokyo Because of Coronavirus Outbreak?

The coronavirus outbreak has continued to dominate the world’s headlines in the early days of the 2020 year as threats of the virus cancelling the Olympic Games this summer have swirled around the world. The coronavirus has already caused the Chinese Olympic Swim Trials to be postponed until May, as they originally were to take place at the end of this month.

Japan’s Government has been told that the contract for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games specifies that the event must be held within 2020, allowing for a postponement from July until further towards the end of the year between October and December should the coronavirus emergency make that a safer option.

Cancellation of the Games, as suggested as a more likely outcome than postponement by IOC member Dick Pound a week ago, would be very costly for Japan and all down the chain of commercial interest.

However, Seiko Hashimoto, Japan’s Olympics Minister said, in response to a lawmaker’s question in parliament, made a point of announcing that Tokyo’s Olympics contract only “calls for the Games to be held within 2020” and that it “could be interpreted as [to] allow a postponement.”

The same contract also speaks to Pound’s take: the International Olympic Committee has the right under the hoisting agreement to cancel the Games.

Hungary’s Katinka Hosszú, South Africa’s Chad le Clos and Sweden’s Sarah Sjöström spoke with The Associated Press about their concerns of a possible cancellation last week.

“I see the news, but in my mind I’m prepared until it’s on. So I have to be ready,” Hosszú told the AP. “I really can’t even imagine having the Olympics canceled. For athletes, it’s a nightmare. That’s our life — preparing for the biggest event in swimming.”

“Of course, it’s definitely on my mind,” Sjöström told the AP. “We are reminded about it every day. I read the news. It’s a bit scary.”

“We have to just not shake too many hands, not touch too much stuff,” le Clos told the AP. “It’s a terrible thing that’s happened. Hopefully it can get cured soon and we’re going to proceed to the Olympics.”

What Should the IOC do if the Olympics Cannot be Held in Tokyo Because of Coronavirus Outbreak?

We asked for the swim poll and you answered with…

Here are the answers:

Postpone the Games – 51%

Continue and hope for the best – 28%

Cancel the Games – 21%

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