Voices calling for the postponement of the games have escalated in the past two days, against the backdrop of the “Covid-19” epidemic, which claimed more than 13,000 casualties, especially in light of the wide restrictions currently imposed on movement and travel, which negatively affect the preparations of athletes for the biggest event in their career.
The invitations come in light of the insistence of the International Olympic and local organizers to prepare for the Games as scheduled (24 July – 9 August), and considering that any decision regarding its fate is still premature.
The newspaper pointed out that the poll was conducted at the conclusion of a video conference between the American Olympic and Paralympic Committee, and 300 athletes.
Officials asked the athletes three questions at the end of the two-hour deliberations: Do you support the postponement of the Olympic and Paralympic Games 2020? Do you support the Olympic and Paralympic Games 2020 on schedule? When would you be comfortable with the International Olympic Committee taking the decision to hold, postpone or cancel the Games?
According to the newspaper, which reported that it obtained a copy of the survey from the Athletes Advisory Council, 70 percent of athletes supported the postponement of the Games, and 41 percent of them absolutely refused to hold it on time.
Thirty-four percent said that a decision on the games “must be taken as soon as the International Olympic Committee is in possession of enough data,” while 23 percent said that the decision should be made by April 15 as a maximum.
For his part, the legendary American runner Carl Lewis joined the demands of postponing the Olympics, calling for his establishment in the year 2022.
He explained: “I think it is very difficult for an athlete to prepare, train, maintain motivation, with total uncertainty. This is the most difficult, because the issue is related to health, it is out of everyone’s control. I think all athletes are accepting this.”
Lewis, 56, one of the most prominent short distance runners in history with nine Olympic golds, called for the two-year summer Games to be postponed and held in the same year for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, months before a major sporting date is also the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.
He explained: “I think the comfortable solution is to postpone two years and put it (the summer session) in the same year of the Winter Olympics. There are some athletes who are on the verge of retiring, and this may harm them, but in reality we should focus on what is (the best) for the crowd.” .
The American Athletics Association and the American Swimming Federation were among the most prominent demands to postpone the games, through two letters he sent to the local Olympic and Paralympic Committee.
There has been a divergence of views on the American level in the past days, as the officials of the local Olympic Committee expressed their support for the position of the German International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, that it is too early to take a decision on the fate of the games, with more than 4 months remaining until its launch.
The outbreak of the Corona virus suspended the vast majority of sporting events around the world, leading to the cancellation of some of them or the postponement of major dates that were scheduled this summer, most notably the European Cup and the Copa America Football Championship.