Tokyo Seen Accepting Sapporo as Olympic Marathon Venue

Sports

Tokyo, Oct. 31 (Jiji Press)--The Tokyo metropolitan government is expected to accept the change of the venue for the men's and women's marathon and race walk events in the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics from the Japanese capital to Sapporo in the northernmost prefecture of Hokkaido, it was learned Thursday.

The metropolitan government will unlikely be asked to shoulder additional costs stemming from the possible venue change, informed sources said.

A top-level meeting will be held in Tokyo on Friday among the metropolitan government, the Japanese government, the organizing committee for the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics, and the International Olympic Committee. John Coates, chairman of the IOC's Coordination Commission for the games, said on Thursday night he is sure that an accord will be made at the four-way talks.

After a number of athletes dropped out of the marathon and race walk events at this year's World Athletics Championships in Doha, Qatar, due to the sweltering heat there, the IOC made an abrupt announcement on Oct. 16 of the change of the venue for the Olympic marathon and race walk to Sapporo, the capital of Hokkaido, due to its concern over the powerful heat wave in Tokyo in summer.

IOC President Thomas Bach revealed an agreement with the organizing committee on the matter on Oct. 17. At a meeting with Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike on Friday last week, Coates confirmed that a decision to alter the venue has been taken.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press