• Thu. Jul 29th, 2021

‘Largely irrelevant’: IOC’s Dick Pound dismisses lack of spectators at Olympics | CBC Sports


Jul 22, 2021

A Canadian senior member of the International Olympic Committee is dismissing the shortage of public spectators on the Tokyo Olympics as “irrelevant.”

The COVID-19 pandemic means no members of the general public can watch occasions reside, however Dick Pound advised the CBC on Thursday in Tokyo that should not have an effect on the competitions and ceremonies themselves.

“The crowd is largely irrelevant. And every once in a while you give them some lights to wave around,” Pound stated, referencing Friday’s opening ceremony, in an interview with CBC News’ Adrienne Arsenault on The National.

While the 68,000-seat Tokyo Olympic Stadium will probably be devoid of public spectators for the opening ceremony, an estimated 10,000 authorities and IOC officers are anticipated to be in attendance.

“If you have the president and secretary of seven international sports federations, I don’t think the world is going to end. I mean, someone may try to make a mountain out of that molehill,” Pound stated.

Earlier, the Canadian Olympic Committee introduced that simply 30-40 athletes of a contingent of 370 would take part within the opening ceremony as a consequence of varied well being and security protocols.

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“Due to the Olympic Village arrival rules outlined in the Tokyo 2020 Playbooks, athletes are only arriving in the Village five days before they compete. This means that there are less athletes in the Village and that most of them are on the verge of competing,” stated Eric Myles, COC chief sport officer.

Pound added that the ceremony is a made-for-TV occasion that should not be negatively affected by the lacking crowd. Meanwhile, occasions equivalent to softball and soccer have already begun in empty stadiums.

“Ninety-nine point five per cent of the people around the world, maybe more, will experience Tokyo through television or some other electronic platform. They don’t care whether there are spectators in the crowd or not. The focus will be on the action. And you can create crowd noise, we’ve seen it in North America. You can fake it.”

Arsenault famous the presence of athletes’ household and pals couldn’t simply be replicated.

“You can’t fake the moms and dads, that’s for sure. And that’s disappointing,” Pound stated.

‘If [outbreak] occurs, it occurs’

Pound additionally indicated he wasn’t overly anxious a couple of potential COVID-19 outbreak. A complete of 91 individuals accredited for the Tokyo Games have examined constructive for the reason that starting of July.

“If that happens, it happens. But non-competing in that context is not a boycott, that’s a health issue that it’s too bad for that particular country, but the health and safety of everybody else is even more important,” he stated.

Instead, Pound stated he was extra involved about public opinion on Tokyo 2020 being swayed by social media.

“If people see that [social-media users] just totally uninformed then they can become irrelevant and that’s really what you hope.”

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