Olympic organizers give in, games postponed to 2021

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    A banner for the upcoming Tokyo 2020 Olympics (Reuters photo)

    OLYMPIC Games organizers and the Japanese government had clung to the hope that the world’s biggest sporting event could go ahead, but finally bowed to the inevitable to make Tokyo 2020 the latest and biggest victim of a ravaged sporting calendar.

    After a call with International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the July 24-Aug. 9 event would be rescheduled for the summer of 2021 at the latest – as proof of victory over the coronavirus.

    “President Bach said he is in agreement, 100%.”

    It is the first time in the Olympics’ 124-year history that they had been postponed, though they were canceled outright three times during the two 20th-century world wars.

    Of the top 10 countries by case numbers, Italy has reported the highest fatality rate, at around 10 percent, which at least partly reflects its older population. The fatality rate globally – the ratio of deaths to confirmed infections – is around 4.3 percent, though national figures can vary widely according to how much testing is done.

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