After the Tokyo Olympics, originally scheduled to be played in 2020, were pushed back by a year to 2021, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has been confronted by a diverse set of challenges ahead of them. They not only have a jam-packed sporting schedule in the coming months but also have to work on the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022 and Youth Olympic Games Dakar 2022.

“Postponing the Games represents a big challenge. In the coming months and year, we will have to focus on the organisation of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, of course, but also on the delivery of the Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022, which are approaching fast, and the Youth Olympic Games Dakar 2022,” the IOC said in a FAQ about Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.

“We will need to assess how this workload affects our staff and decide how to organise ourselves to be as efficient as possible in helping the Organising Committees deliver the Games. We will rely on the “Here we go” Task Force to give a clear overview of the situation and of the scope of the challenge ahead of us so that the IOC, as an organisation, can put in place the relevant measures and resources,” it added.

The quadrennial event was postponed in view of the health concerns posed by the dreaded coronavirus.

“The IOC has always taken into consideration the athletes’ voice, which has played a very important role. We are in constant contact with our Athletes’ Commission, whose Chair is a member of the IOC Executive Board and takes part in any consultation, any decision and any vote,” the IOC said.

Quizzed whether the cancellation of the games was a possibility, the IOC replied: “A cancellation of the Olympic Games would have destroyed the Olympic dream of 11,000 athletes from all 206 National Olympic Committees, from the IOC Refugee Olympic Team, and for all the people who are supporting the athletes, including coaches, doctors, officials, training partners, friends and family.”

“It would also have destroyed the work and the enthusiasm of our great Japanese hosts, with Tokyo being the best-prepared city for the Games ever.”

The IOC was further asked about the financial impact of the games getting postponed by a year to which they stated: “The postponement was made in order to protect the health of all people involved in the staging of the Games, in particular the athletes, and to support the containment of the virus. It will now be the work of the IOC to assess all the challenges induced by the postponement of the Games, including the financial impact.

“The Japanese government has reiterated that it stands ready to fulfill its responsibility for hosting successful Games. At the same time, the IOC has stressed its full commitment to the successful Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.

“The postponement was not determined by financial interests, because thanks to its risk management policies including insurance, the IOC will, in any case, be able to continue its operations and accomplish its mission to organise the Olympic Games.”

(With inputs from IANS)