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

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A Canadian senior member of the Worldwide 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 informed the CBC on Thursday in Tokyo that should not have an effect on the competitions and ceremonies themselves.

“The gang is basically irrelevant. And each occasionally you give them some lights to wave round,” Pound mentioned, referencing Friday’s opening ceremony, in an interview with CBC Information’ Adrienne Arsenault on The Nationwide.

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

WATCH | Pound discusses followers, restrictions on The Nationwide:

Adrienne Arsenault speaks to Worldwide Olympic Committee member Dick Pound about banning spectators and his worries in regards to the public’s opinion of the Video games. 4:36

“When you’ve got the president and secretary of seven worldwide sports activities federations, I do not assume the world goes to finish. I imply, somebody might attempt to make a mountain out of that molehill,” Pound mentioned.

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Extra from Tokyo 2020

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 result of varied well being and security protocols.

“Because of the Olympic Village arrival guidelines outlined within the Tokyo 2020 Playbooks, athletes are solely arriving within the Village 5 days earlier than they compete. Because of this there are much less athletes within the Village and that almost all of them are on the verge of competing,” mentioned 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. In the meantime, occasions comparable to softball and soccer have already begun in empty stadiums.

“Ninety-nine level 5 per cent of the folks world wide, perhaps extra, will expertise Tokyo by way of tv or another digital platform. They do not care whether or not there are spectators within the crowd or not. The main target can be on the motion. And you’ll create crowd noise, we have seen it in North America. You may pretend it.”

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

“You may’t pretend the mothers and dads, that is for positive. And that is disappointing,” Pound mentioned.

‘If [outbreak] occurs, it occurs’

Pound additionally indicated he wasn’t overly anxious a couple of potential COVID-19 outbreak. A complete of 91 folks accredited for the Tokyo Video games have examined constructive because the starting of July.

“If that occurs, it occurs. However non-competing in that context just isn’t a boycott, that is a well being difficulty that it is too unhealthy for that specific nation, however the well being and security of everyone else is much more essential,” he mentioned.

As an alternative, Pound mentioned he was extra involved about public opinion on Tokyo 2020 being swayed by social media.

“If folks see that [social-media users] simply completely uninformed then they’ll grow to be irrelevant and that is actually what you hope.”

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Written by bourbiza

Bourbiza Mohamed. Writer and Political Discourse Analysis.


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