It may be a little confusing but the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games will now take place in 2021 but are still being referred to as Tokyo 2020!
The new dates have been announced and the Paralympic Games are now set to take place from 24 August – 5 Sept 2021. The Olympic Games will now take place from 23 July – 8 August 2021.
International Paralympic Committee (IPC) President Andrew Parsons said: “It is fantastic news that we could find new dates so quickly for the Tokyo 2020 Games. The new dates provide certainty for the athletes, reassurance for the stakeholders and something to look forward to for the whole world.
“When the Paralympic Games do take place in Tokyo next year, they will be an extra special display of humanity uniting as one, a global celebration of human resilience and a sensational showcase of sport.
“Now that the dates are confirmed, the IPC will work with the International Federations to establish new qualification criteria which will fully respect those that have already qualified for the Games.”
With under 500 days to go until the Paralympic Games, ParalympicsGB created an uplifting video as they reset the clock and started the countdown for the rescheduled Games:
A New Focus
The announcements of the new dates allows our athletes to adapt to a new challenge, to train harder and to refocus their efforts for 2021. We will be waiting in anticipation to watch our world-class Paralympic team take to the arena in Tokyo in 2021. We will be cheering louder than ever, knowing the challenges all the athletes have had to adjust to, but we know the performances we can expect from our athletes and that will keep us excited as we start the build up to the Games once again.
The Governor of Tokyo, Koike Yuriko, said: “In consideration of the global coronavirus outbreak, we need a certain timeframe before we fully prepare for the delivery of a Games that is safe and secure for the athletes and spectators.
“The preparation for the new dates will go smoothly as the dates match with the same timeframe as the original competition dates corresponding with ticketing, venue staffing, volunteers and transport.
“The athletes, volunteers, torchbearers and local municipality governments have been concerned about the situation. Since we now have concrete new dates to aim for, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government will commit all its resources and work closely with the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee, the national government, and other stakeholders to fully prepare for the delivery of a Games that is safe and secure.”
Chelsey Gotell, Chairperson of the IPC Athletes’ Council said: “I think these new dates will be a huge sense of relief for the whole athlete community who will be appreciative at the speed they have been set. With more than 500 days to go until the Paralympics, athletes can mentally reset and begin thinking about their 2021 plans.
“For now though training for Tokyo is not the priority, staying safe is, and I hope all athletes, their families and their friends follow the advice of their local authorities during this difficult period for the whole world.”
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