After the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee confirmed their decision to postpone the Games on Tuesday, several Indian athletes welcomed the decision.
Initially scheduled to take place from 24 July to 9 August 2020, the IOC in conjunction with the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee decided to reschedule the Games ‘to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021.’
Shortly after the announcement, reactions started flooding in with several Indian athletes, past and present taking to social media to welcome this latest development and applaud the IOC and the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee’s decision.
India’s only individual gold medal winner in Olympic history, shooter Abhinav Bindra – gold medallist from Beijing 2008 in the 10m Air Rifle – took to Twitter to share his thoughts.
“Now that the scenario around the Tokyo Games is clear it is paramount to safeguard athletes, suspend training camps immediately and make athletes feel like contributors to the community by being socially responsible. Their health and of those around them is what matters,” Abhinav Bindra tweeted.
The five-time Olympian also urged all athletes to stay safe in a subsequent tweet.
Bronze medallist in badminton from the 2012 London Games, Saina Nehwal lauded the IOC for the decision.
Six-time world champion and bronze medal winner in boxing from the 2012 London Olympics, MC Mary Kom also hailed the news in a succinct way.
Meanwhile, former Indian hockey men’s team captain Viren Rasquinha felt that postponement was better for the overall fitness and confidence of athletes heading into Tokyo.
The announcement to postpone the Games came 122 days before the planned opening ceremony at the new national stadium in Tokyo.
While the Olympic Games were cancelled during wartime previously, this was the first postponement of a Games.