Olympic tradition dumped over COVID concerns

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Athletes on the Tokyo Olympics will put their medals round their very own necks to guard in opposition to spreading the coronavirus.

The “very vital change” to conventional medal ceremonies within the 339 occasions was revealed Wednesday by Worldwide Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach.

“The medals is not going to be given across the neck,” Bach advised worldwide media on a convention name from Tokyo.

“They are going to be introduced to the athlete on a tray after which the athlete will take the medal him or herself.

“It is going to be made positive that the one that will put the medal on the tray will achieve this solely with disinfected gloves, in order that the athlete can make sure that no person touched them earlier than.”

The Olympic method is completely different to soccer in Europe the place UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin has personally hung medals across the necks of gamers at competitors finals in latest weeks.

Ceferin additionally shook fingers with Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma on the Euro 2020 medal and trophy presentation in London on Sunday. His save in a penalty shootout clinched the title for Italy in opposition to England.

Bach confirmed Wednesday that in Tokyo “there will likely be no handshakes and there will likely be no hugs in the course of the ceremony.”

Olympic medals are sometimes introduced by an IOC member or a number one official in a sport’s governing physique.

The IOC had beforehand mentioned medalists and ceremony officers must put on masks.

With no paying spectators allowed to attend most Olympic occasions, what Bach described as an “immersive sound system” will attempt to create ambiance for the athletes within the stadiums and venues.

Crowd noise recorded from every occasion at earlier Olympics will likely be fed into the world as one in every of a number of methods to help the athletes, he mentioned.

Some athletes will likely be related after their occasion by way of screens to their households, mates and fan golf equipment at house, whereas followers will be capable of ship video clips of as much as six seconds that may be displayed subsequent to the sector of play.

The Tokyo Olympics open July 23 in a state of emergency and rising numbers of COVID-19 circumstances within the metropolis.

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