Athletics

Coe confident Olympics will go ahead, citing Tokyo’s "cast-iron" will to deliver

Seb Coe says he firmly expects the Tokyo Olympics to go ahead – despite the postponement of the World Indoor Athletics Championships.

The World Indoors, scheduled for Nanjing in China next March, had already been postponed once. They have now been rescheduled for 2023.

Despite that and the fact Tokyo confirmed a record 602 new Covid cases yesterday, Lord Coe expects the flame to be lit as planned on July 23.

“I went to Tokyo just a few weeks ago with a small team and was very comforted that there is a real cast-iron will to deliver these Games.

“Yeah there’ll be adaptations and changes. They talked about simplification and other things, but they are absolutely determined to stage these Games.

“So I have a pretty high level of confidence that we’ll be there. Nothing is certain in this world but I think we are working on a much firmer proposition that there will be a Games next year.”

A letter has been sent anonymously by senior figures in British athletics to the board of UK Athletics allegedly criticising new chief executive Joanna Coates and chairman Nic Coward.

The letter reportedly says there is a “lack of trust” in the leadership of the governing body, a lack of transparency and a concern that the sport will be “bankrupt by 2022”.

Coe said: “I don’t think Jo and Nic have inherited the easiest deck of cards and that’s been tough for them.

“You do have to be patient in those situations and I do hope the sport gives them the opportunity to find their feet and pull the knitting together. I’m sure they can.”

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