TOKYO (Reuters) – More than 70% of people in Japan want the Tokyo Olympics to be canceled or postponed as the coronavirus pandemic continues, a Kyodo News poll showed on Monday, more than 100 days before the start of the Olympics.
The survey showed 39.2% wanted the Olympics to be canceled, while 32.8% wanted another postponement. Only 24.5% of respondents wanted the biggest sporting event in the world to go on schedule.
Tokyo on Monday started a month-long period of quasi-emergency action to blunt a fourth wave of COVID-19 infections driven by the virulent mutant strain.
More than 92.6% of respondents feel anxious about a recurrence of the infection, a Kyodo survey conducted from April 10 to 12 showed.
While vaccination shots for people aged 65 and over started in about 120 locations across the country on Monday, imported doses are still limited and the speed of injection appears unlikely to stop the latest wave of infections.
The survey found that about 60% of people were dissatisfied with Japan’s progress in vaccination.
Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga’s cabinet approval rate rose 1.9 percentage points from the previous month to 44%, while his disapproval rating was at 36.1%, the survey showed.
Reporting by Eimi Yamamitsu; Edited by Hugh Lawson
KARACHI: veteran Pakistani wrestler Mohammad Inam maintains Pakistan’s prestige when winning the bronze medal despite sustaining a serious injury, beating Symbat Sulaimanov of Kyrgyzstan 10-7 in the battle for the 97kg bronze medal in the Asian Qualifiers round for the Tokyo Olympics in Almaty, Kazakhstan, Sunday.
However, Inam’s achievements were not enough because she failed to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics. So was the fate of his comrades, Mohammad Bilal and Haroon Abid, who also failed to escape after losing the battle. The top two in each weight category will qualify for the Olympics in the continental qualifiers.
Now Pakistan has one chance to fight for an Olympic seat and it is the World Qualifiers for the Olympics which Bulgaria will host in Sofia next month.
It is the first time that Pakistan has won a medal at an Asian qualifier in the country’s wrestling history. Inam’s cousin, Mohammad Bilal, has won bronze at the World Qualifiers round for the 2016 Rio Olympics held in Turkey.
“It is a great blessing from Almighty God because I can win a medal. I was injured in the quarter-finals but I think we have come here and the people at home have placed their hopes on us, so I tried and God gave me a prize, “said Almaty’s Inam ‘The News’.
“You know for the last two years the federation didn’t get a penny from the state. Even then it helps us and we also give money and organize some training and through that we get medals, ”said the two-time world beach wrestling champion.
“Since two in each class will qualify for the Olympics, we can’t do it but we still have a chance in Bulgaria in the world qualifying round and we will press for an Olympic seat there,” said Inam.
Earlier in the day, Inam lost to Rio 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Magomed Idrisovitch Ibragimov of Uzbekistan in the quarter-finals. Inam appeared to feel excruciating knee pain during a fight led by the Uzbek, who is also a two-time Asian gold medalist, leading 8-0 in the first half. The second half turned out to be a cool affair with the Uzbekistan winners finally emerging with the same score.
However, her battles with top players allow Inam to fight for the bronze medal.
Pakistan Wrestling Federation (PWF) Secretary Arshad Sattar was pleased with Inam’s achievement. “It is the morale that boosts the bronze medal victory for Pakistan,” he told The News.
“Despite the injury, such a good performance can only be expected from a wrestler like Inam, with a lot of experience. Inam didn’t want to fight but I pushed her and told her if she still has something still in her to fight then she should take the opportunity herself and she’s doing a commendable job, ”said Arshad.
He said he would ask the Director General of the Pakistan Sports Council (PSB) to hold a month-long camp for top wrestlers ahead of the Bulgaria event.
Bilal fought against Bekbolot Myrzanazar Uulu of Kyrgyzstan in the 57 kg quarter-final. Kyrgyzstan led 4-0 in the first half. Bilal in the second half made a stunning comeback, making it 4-4 before Bekbolot, also an Asian bronze medalist, secured two points to seal a narrow win.
“Bilal did well and we will remove his weakness during the month-long camp before sending him to Bulgaria,” said Arshad.
The Japanese-looking Haroon Abid showed courage before falling in both of his fights in the 125kg weight category.
Haroon, the nephew of the great Jahara, lost 10-15 in a qualifying battle against Munkhtur Lkhagvagerel of Mongolia. He was then defeated by Lazarev Aiaal of Kyrgyzstan 13-2 in a repechage battle.
Haroon seemed to have had a stamina problem as he led a 6-0 repechage fight at one stage but he was not at his best in the second round where his opponent took him to the sword with a superb display.
“I don’t think he gets standard training in Japan. We will hold him for one month during the camp ahead of the world qualifiers and I hope we can overcome his stamina problem, “said Arshad.
The three of them will now perform at the Asian Championships which Almaty will also be hosting from April 13-18.
MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Athletics Australia has said they will not send athletes to next month’s World Athletics Relay Championships in Poland because of the COVID-19 situation, a decision that may put their hopes of qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics in doubt.
The decision was made “in light of the COVID-19 situation in Poland and the greater Europe, with the safety and well-being of Australian participants at the forefront,” AA said.
“It is always disappointing to withdraw a team from a major event, but we believe the decision is in the best interests of the health and safety of our athletes, staff and coaches,” said AA Chief Executive Darren Gocher in a statement.
The AA said it will host a “special relay event” in June with the support of Oceania Athletics, so that the Australian relay team can work towards meeting qualification standards for the Tokyo Olympics, which start on July 23.
Australia hopes to enter the men’s and women’s teams in the 4×100 meter and 4×400 relay at the Olympics but has not yet qualified.
The top eight nations on the May 1-2 World Athletics Relay in Silesia qualify for Tokyo if they have not yet qualified through the 2019 World Championships in Doha.
The remaining places will be allocated according to the World Athletics rankings on 29 June.
Reporting by Ian Ransom; Edited by Peter Rutherford
The road to the Tokyo Olympics for the Australian relay team has been complicated by fears of COVID-19 denying them their chance of qualifying next month in Europe.
Athletics Australia (AA) on Sunday said a team would not be sent to the World Athletics Relay Championship in Poland on May 1-2, due to COVID-19 concerns.
The decision was made with athletes’ safety first and only after strict consideration of the risks associated with travel to Europe and quarantine requirements on return to Australia.
Athletics Australia CEO Darren Gocher said the resignation was a blow to athletes.
“It is always disappointing to withdraw a team from a big event, but we believe the decision is in the best interests of the health and safety of our athletes, staff and coaches,” said Gocher.
“We acknowledge the work World Athletics is doing in trying to host safe events ahead of the Tokyo Olympics, but after seeking advice from medical professionals and considering the health risks, current government advice and the need for quarantine upon returning to Australia, it decided it was not feasible or safe to do so. a trip to Poland for this event. “
AA plans to host a special relay event in June with the support of Oceania Athletics, to give Australian relay teams the opportunity to meet qualification standards for the July Olympics in Tokyo.
Noelle Lambert has always been a top contender in the field of lacrosse.
Growing up in New Hampshire, Lambert started playing lacrosse in eighth grade, and played for one of the most competitive club teams in the northeast: Granite State Elite.
During his sophomore year in high school, he heard about the emergence of a new Division I lacrosse program at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, where he finally decided to extend his academic and athletic career.
Lambert played attacking at UMass and was the team’s top scorer, starting in all of their 17 matches during his first season in 2015. Entering his second season, he was on pace for another spectacular season but was injured in a motorcycle crash during the summer. Lambert and the rest of his team don’t know if he can play lacrosse again.
Lambert’s left leg was crushed after a collision with an oncoming garbage truck while on vacation on Martha’s Vineyard. After he arrived at the hospital, doctors decided the best course of action was to amputate him above the knee.
The injury was so severe that possible complications could prevent it from standing up again, let alone walking or running. He has faced years of rehabilitation and it is likely that some motor skills will never be fully regained. But he’s ready to go back to the lacrosse field and get back to where he left off before his accident.
“I often say that I am grateful for my accident and how I now see it as a positive thing because it changed my whole outlook on life,” Lambert said. “It changed my team-mate type, my athlete type, and it also changed my personal type.”
Miraculously, 18 months after his injury, Lambert hit the pitch before the end of the first half in Riverhawks’ game against the University of Hartford in 2018.
“I knew coming back to playing lacrosse that I had to work 10 times harder than everyone else because I had one foot less. Rehabilitation is very important to me. I know what I need to learn to walk and run again and I have to take it seriously. “
With a time of about 40 seconds, Lambert emerged from a group of picks at the top of an eight meter arc. He caught a pass from a teammate behind the net, and quickly caught and fired the ball past the Hartford keeper and into the back of the net.
Her story took the world by storm, attracting media and news attention across the country. The comeback story of the century; the girl who lost her leg in an accident 18 months ago, just scored in her first match on the field. Through the pinnacle of hard work and determination, Lambert turns into a beacon of inspiration, showing everyone that anything is possible.
Lambert graduated from UMass Lowell in 2019, and after graduating took a new path, training for the Paralympics and working to earn a place on the Paralympic Track and Field Team. He competed in Dubai at the World Championships, where he finished fourth and set a record in the 100 meter run.
“That’s very strange. Growing up, I was always involved in team sports. I’ve never been part of an individual sport, so I know that during training I really need to focus more on the mental aspect of the game, “he said of his transition to another sport. “Track practice is much different from lacrosse practice. Lacrosse training is all about resistance and how many reps you can do. Track is more about taking your time and making sure you really rest before each sprint. “
He said it was an honor to wear the colors red, white and blue, and he will treasure them forever, as he awaits the 2021 Paralympic Games in Tokyo.
For the future, Lambert not only plans to continue training on the track, but also works for a non-profit organization, The Born To Run Foundation, which helps provide prosthetics for children and young adults.
“I started with children who have been through what I have been through,” he said of the foundation. “Nobody realizes how expensive prosthetics are. I am very lucky; I have several foundations that help me. We will help children as well as adults who have to live this new phase of life. “
Mackenzie Meaney is a contributor to GoodSport, a media company dedicated to increasing the visibility of women and girls in sports.