The World Health Organization’s decision to formally recognise the coronavirus epidemic as a worldwide pandemic signifies organisers are facing tough choices on whether to proceed with important sporting events.
The nation is presently triggering prevention and preparedness strategies to block additional transmission of the virus before the Olympics.
Japan’s present procedures of prevention include shutting schools, cancelling occasions, quarantining global passengers, and banning particular travelers from public transportation. Its attempts have prevented the amount of individuals infected with COVID-19 from climbing significantly. However, these methods do not look transferable nor achievable for handling the influx of spectators, athletes, staff and media for those matches if the present number of instances and transmission rates globally be preserved until July.
Events Postponed And Cancelled
Some eligibility events such as the Olympics have been cancelled due to the outbreak. World Taekwondo transferred its Asian qualifier in the Chinese town of Wuxi into Amman, Jordan. The game’s European qualification championship, scheduled in Milan at the center of Italy’s infected zone, was transferred to Moscow.
The cancellation of other athletic tournaments is preventing modifications to the entire world ranks of athletes, which decides who qualifies to compete in the Olympics. Athletes needing extra competitions to enhance their ranking so as to be eligible for the Olympics may lose out on the matches.
The global Shooting Sport Federation requested to expand the Olympic qualification process until early July leaving some athletes uncertain if they are going to compete in the Olympics until only 3 weeks before the matches start.
Occasion cancellations and travel limitations may also cause fewer anti-doping evaluations of athletes leading up to the Olympics as testers might be prevented from traveling.
Alternatives For Tokyo
When the Olympic Games in Tokyo proceed as planned, a couple scenarios could perform. An approach is to permit athletes to compete, but lacking the aid of audiences. The goal here is to decrease the probability that somebody from the audience would transmit the illness to tens of thousands of others. This has happened at a few soccer games in Italy, a women’s golf championship in Asia and has been being researched by the NBA before it chose to suspend its time rather.
This might be an early indication that event organisers are researching the broader use of the strategy.
Another strategy may be to replicate the activities of African countries during the two recent outbreaks of Ebola virus illness when fans and athletes have been exposed to health screening prior to entering soccer stadiums.
Treat It Just Like The Flu
Another possibility is to just take care of the novel coronavirus such as the flu that for sporting occasions, way doing nothing out of the normal. The Super Bowl brings tens of thousands of sport lovers to the host town each February, which contrasts with influenza season. The influenza virus travels through cycles where particular breeds have been especially deadly in different historical moments. However, Americans have a blasé mindset to the flu, and also the Super Bowl just involves audiences from a country unlike the worldwide audiences who attend the Olympic Games.
But, Japan’s Olympic ministry said the nation’s contract with the IOC just countries the year 2020 meaning that there might be a chance of postponing the matches. Postponement would give time to develop prevention and preparedness strategies.
Both athletes and audiences have to wait to find out whether the spread of this virus slows along with the Olympics go as intended, or if the planet’s biggest sporting event will, for the very first time in its history, be postponed.