'No ideal solution for Tokyo Olympics preparation', say organisers as athletes vent frustration

Katerina Stefanidi took gold in the Pole Vault in Rio in 2016 (PA Images)
Katerina Stefanidi took gold in the Pole Vault in Rio in 2016 (PA Images)
10:57am, Wed 18 Mar 2020
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Organisers of the Tokyo Olympics have said 'no solution will be ideal' as they attempt to protect athletes in preparation for the 2020 Games amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The Olympics are due to start on July 24 and despite cancellation of the majority of sports events globally, organisers revealed yesterday they were still planning to go ahead.

However, athletes who are scheduled to be competing at the Games have shared their frustrations and fears over the current decisions.

Greece's Olympic pole vault champion Katerina Stefanidi said the International Olympic Committee was 'risking our health', while Britain's world champion heptathlete Katarina Johnson-Thompson claimed it had become 'impossible' to train.

The 27-year-old is being forced to return from training in France as a result of the lockdown introduced by President Macron.

Stefanidi, added: "This is not about how things will be in four months. This is about how things are now.

"The IOC wants us to keep risking our health, our family's health and public health to train every day? You are putting us in danger right now, today, not in four months."

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