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BRITISH Olympic Association (BOA) chairman Sir Hugh Robertson remains confident the rescheduled Tokyo Games will go ahead this summer despite surging coronavirus rates.
Former London 2012 chief executive Sir Keith Mills was the latest to cast doubt on the event this week when he suggested it was unlikely that it would be in a position to go ahead.
However, Robertson restated the BOA’s belief in Japan’s ability to stage a full-scale games, insisting: “Any talk of cancellation and postponement is not what we are hearing.”
Robertson’s comments echo those of Team GB chef de mission Mark England, who said last week that his confidence in the games going ahead broadly on its original scale has remained “absolute from the outset.”
Further doubts arose earlier this month when Japan declared a state of emergency in the wider Tokyo region and two opinion polls suggested a large majority of the population believed the games would be cancelled or postponed again.
However, both the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the games organising committee say the prospect of another delay is not on the agenda, that they expect fans to be admitted to stadiums, and that a coronavirus vaccine may not be mandatory.
Robertson told BBC Radio 4: “Everybody is working on the basis that these games will go ahead. There is no talk of cancellation or postponement.
“Everything that I’m hearing at the moment is that there is a total determination on behalf of the IOC, organising committee and [national Olympic committees] around the world to stage these games and our athletes unanimously want to go.
“So I am as confident as I possibly can be that these games will go ahead.”
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