Whether the Tokyo Olympics should take place may soon become obvious, World Athletics President Sebastian Coe said on Saturday.
Coe’s comments came as numerous athletes and federations called for a delay in the competition, which is scheduled to run from July 24 to August 9, because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“A decision on the Olympic Games may become very obvious very quickly in the coming days and weeks,” Coe said in a statement.
“As I said last week, I don’t think we should have the Olympic Games at all costs, certainly not at the cost of athlete safety.
“The issue of competition fairness is paramount,” he said, adding that athletes were struggling to train in various countries due to measures put in place to reduce the spread of the coronavirus which has killed thousands.
“If we lose the level playing field, then we lose the integrity of the competition,” Coe said. “Nobody wants this, least of all the athletes or the fans.”
Despite the clamour to delay the Olympics, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has pressed on, saying the Games will go ahead as scheduled. “This is uncharted territory for all of us,” Coe said.