May 20, 2024

Only fully-vaccinated IOC members to present medals in Tokyo

Only fully-vaccinated IOC members to present medals in Tokyo

One IOC member and one International Federation representative will be present at each event, while athletes will stay on their own podium module during the entire duration of the ceremony.

Only fully-vaccinated International Olympic Committee (IOC) members will be able to present medals to athletes at the delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games as part of COVID-19 countermeasures in place at the event.

IOC President Thomas Bach made the revelation prior to a meeting with Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike onThursday 15 July 2021, before the organisation later confirmed the "significant change" in a statement.

Bach had said on Wednesday 14 July 2021 that athletes would put their own medals around their necks during the ceremonies at Tokyo 2020 to limit the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus.

The medal presenters, typically members of the IOC or other guests, will be required to wear disinfected gloves.

One IOC member and one International Federation representative will be present at each event, while athletes will stay on their own podium module during the entire duration of the ceremony.

Bach said today that he had been fully vaccinated and was being tested daily, while claiming close to 100 per cent of the IOC membership and staff had also been double-jabbed.

His meeting with Koike came as Tokyo reported 1,308 new COVID-19 cases, the highest daily total in the Olympic and Paralympic host city for six months - eight days before the Games are due to open.

COVID-19 concerns have dominated the build-up to the event, and several teams have already been affected by positive cases upon their arrival.

Bach claimed the rules outlined in the playbook - which the IOC and Tokyo 2020 hope will ensure the Games are "safe and secure" - were "working" and "are being enforced".

A fourth state of emergency came into force in Tokyo this week in response to a rising number of COVID-19 cases, leading to the decision to ban spectators from almost every Olympic venue.

The Tokyo 2020 Olympics, pushed back to this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, are due to open on July 23 and close on August 8.