WORLD Championship 200-metre finalist Kyle Greaux said he will be in support of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics being postponed, as a number of prior meets have been cancelled which is preventing athletes from preparing for the Games.
Sporting events (local, regional and international), have been either cancelled or postponed because of the novel coronavirus, covid19. The Olympic Games, the highlight of many athletes careers is scheduled to take place in Tokyo from July 24 to August 9, may be impacted due to the virus.
Greaux, 31, finished eighth in the men's 200m final at the 2019 Doha World Championships in Qatar and was part of the quartet that claimed silver in the men's 4x100m relay and is anticipating the Olympics.
However, the 200m runner said he will be in favour of the Olympics being postponed, saying, "I think a postponement would be definitely better because in terms of preparation and qualification and all of that, everything is just on hold. Honestly I do hope that they postpone it because it is too much to deal with psychologically."
Greaux's statement comes just two days after president of the TT Olympic Committee Brian Lewis said he was ready to suggest a postponement of the Games to October 2020. However, after hearing the "clarity" and "plan of action" expressed by International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach, Lewis thought otherwise.
Bach said, “The health and well-being of all those involved in the preparations for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 is our number one concern. All measures are being taken to safeguard the safety and interests of athletes, coaches and support teams. We are an Olympic community; we support one another in good times and in difficult times. This Olympic solidarity defines us as a community.”
USA Swimming also wants the Olympic Games to be postponed, asking the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee to advocate for the postponement of the Games by one year. USA Swimming said their athletes will lack preparation and are worried about the safety of the athletes.
Greaux said the coronavirus is not that distracting, but said in the forthcoming months, athletes were looking forward to earning qualification which is now difficult with a number of meets being put off.
"It hampers the season as an athlete and as a human being you have to be careful. From the athlete perspective it poses a lot of challenges because there this a level of uncertainty and then they cancelled the majority of track meets. In terms of preparation leading up to Olympics, apart from myself, I know a lot of world class athletes who have not had a great season last year would have been trying to make the Olympic qualification standard this year...mentally it plays a role, but for now I am just going out there and training as usual and trying to be as careful as I could."
The 2020 Diamond League will now tentatively start on May 24 in Stockholm, Sweden as oppose to the original date of April 17 because of the coronavirus. The first meet on April 17 in Doha, followed by meets in China on May 9 and 16 will not be held.
Greaux's training locally has also been affected. Last weekend, the Sports Company of TT (SporTT) decided to close all sporting facilities under its purview. However, on Thursday another release by SporTT was sent saying that TT athletes who have qualified for the Olympics or have been deemed potential qualifiers will be allowed to train.
Greaux was glad to get back on the track on Friday alongside a few other athletes.
"Shortly after they made the initial announcement I basically shut down everything, I would say for the past three days I have not been able to train. This morning (Friday) we were added to the list of people allowed to enter the Larry Gomes Stadium (in Arima), so today was my first day of training for the week actually."
The 200m runner said he was thankful to train again because some athletes in the world are not afforded the opportunity.