“It doesn’t make sense”: Tokyo is crowded, but the Olympics did not

Tokyo Olympics update

“If you like New Japan Professional Wrestling, please applaud!” Takahashi roared “time bomb” and marched Around the ring Wearing a pair of colorful shorts, the scent of fried chicken and fireworks is mixed in Tokyo Dome.

Over 5,000 people crowded to watch celebrities like “Cold Skull” Sanada, Shingo “The Dragon” Takagi and Zack Saber Jr last weekend Fight against In the Wrestling Grand Slam, I did my part.

It is in stark contrast to the Olympic skateboarding competition a few hours ago.

Ten-year-old Shirasaki Ryota and his father stood on a bridge overlooking the Ariake City Sports Park. Holding a large bottle of water and a pair of binoculars, they wanted to see the game.

Shirosakis won a ticket to one of the events in which Japan won two gold medals.But when the 2020 Tokyo Olympics made a decision, they were cancelled Last minute decision The Olympic Games will be held behind closed doors.

“The weather is very hot, but it will be very hot anyway to watch a game in the stadium,” Ryota said. “I don’t mind. But I don’t really see much from here.”

Five days after the Tokyo Olympics, Spectacular Japanese victory The host country has been placed at the top of the gold medal list and the morale of the public has been boosted.

Matches without spectators are in stark contrast to other sporting events, such as the Wrestling Grand Slam, where Tokyo Dome is packed with 5,000 fans © Etsuo Hara/Getty Images

However, this enthusiasm is limited to the enthusiasm that the TV host can inspire, especially because of the inconsistency, which means that wrestling matches are allowed to have thousands of spectators indoors, but no one is allowed to gather to watch skateboards. open air.

Ryota’s father, who did not reveal his name, said: “It is very, very disappointing to watch incorrectly. This is a wrong decision.” The audience is banned from watching. “This is just so they can say they are taking care of [coronavirus] Circumstances, but I think if half of the stadium is full, it is not a big risk. It is outside and we are wearing masks. “

Official government regulations under the Tokyo State of Emergency state that activities can be carried out at 50% of the capacity and can accommodate up to 5,000 people.

However, under pressure from medical consultants, the national government, the city of Tokyo, and Tokyo 2020 organizers decided to go beyond this recommendation and host the Olympics completely behind closed doors.The doctors believe that holding such a large event in the audience will cause Increase exercise The population of the entire city has increased, social contacts have increased, and the highly contagious Delta variant has spread faster.

The Japanese women defeated the United States to win the softball gold medal, but no fans in the stadium watched their victory © JIJI PRESS/AFP via Getty Images

According to people familiar with the matter, the International Olympic Committee is deeply angry with this decision.

Michael Payne, the former marketing director of the International Olympic Committee, said: “If you were here and all the stadiums were empty, you would say:’Well, there is a proper blockade.'” “This is a rule for a group of events. Another rule for another set of events. Something meaningless is happening.”

For fans and the International Olympic Committee, the problem with hosting events without spectators is that the atmosphere is flat, and even the most spectacular sports feats will receive polite applause from some coaches and officials.

“The problem you can easily see on TV is that there is no atmosphere. There is no emotion.” Shirasaki said. “They said in their slogan that this is an emotional Olympics, but without the support of countries, how can you say that?”

Japanese fans occasionally ignore official advice. The park where the men’s bicycle road race started was blocked last weekend, but when the riders appeared on the street, they found a group of locals and cyclists on both sides of the route. The officials waved signs urging everyone to go home, but did not take any measures to get them to leave.

A sort of Recent polls Nikkei’s opinion has changed slightly. They support the Olympics. 37% of people said it is appropriate to play without spectators, 31% said that the Olympics should be cancelled or postponed, and 25% said that some fans should be allowed to participate.

But the Covid-19 situation in Tokyo remains dangerous, with a record 3,177 cases reported in the capital on Wednesday. Regardless of whether it wants to allow viewers to watch, Tokyo 2020 is still firmly caught in the trap of the coronavirus.

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