Tokyo chosen to host 2020 Summer Olympic Games.


Tokyo, capital of Japan successfully won the bid to host 2020 Summer Olympic Games, beating out the two other finalists; Madrid, Spain and Istanbul, Turkey. The long-awaited announcement was made yesterday on the 125th International Olympic Committee (IOC) Session held in Buenos Aires, Argentina after final round of voting took place. This must be the most joyous news for Japan which has been going through hard time in recent years. The games is scheduled to be held from 24th July to 9th August 2020 in Tokyo, Japan.

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(Image depicting IOC President, Jacques Rogge announcing Tokyo as host for 2020 Summer Olympic Games. Image source: http://www.cbc.ca/gfx/images/news/photos/2013/09/07/li-tokyo-win-04972158.jpg)

Tokyo’s bid team had successfully assured all voting members that the radiation effect from the damaged Fukushima nuclear plant from the devastating 2011 earthquake has not and will not do anything to the city. I’m not seriously convinced by the statement but it appears most of the members had accepted. Anyway, a big congratulation to Tokyo for winning the bid to host the world’s largest sporting event, and this will be their second Summer Olympic Games. (their first was in 1964, 56 years ago from the time of the 2020 Olympics). The country had also previously hosted two Winter Olympic Games.

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(Image depicting the logos of the three candidate cities on bidding for 2020 Summer Olympic Games. Image source: http://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/media/three_bid_cities470x263.jpg)

In the first round of voting, Madrid and Istanbul both received the lowest votes (each 26) while Tokyo had 42. In a run-off, Madrid received 45 while Istanbul had 49. Hence, Madrid was eliminated to my surprise. Perhaps, the IOC committee members still do not see the potential of the city to host such a large games when the region is hit hard by the economy downturn in recent years. That leaves Istanbul and Tokyo in the final round of voting. Eventually, Tokyo won by 60 votes against 36 votes for Istanbul. There are several concerns over the instability of Istanbul’s government, looking from recent public protests and demonstrations as well as near distance to the neighbouring Syria that is on the verge of war recently.

Earlier, my country, Malaysia, had expressed interest to bid for the 2020 Summer Olympic Games to complement with the country’s vision to become a developed nation by year 2020. However, there was no official bid made later on that caused major disappointment among the citizens. Awarding 2020 games to an Asian city reduces chance for another Asian city (perhaps our capital, Kuala Lumpur?) to have higher opportunity to bid in future games. Nevertheless, KL would be hosting the 127th IOC Session in 2015 which will decide on the host of 2022 Winter Olympic Games. That would most probably a good chance to introduce our country to the IOC members before proceeding to start any bid.

Last but not least, I’m looking forward to Tokyo, Japan on staging the 2020 Summer Olympic Games. Celebrations were held across the country over this great news for them. The bid team had mentioned that it is going to be the best games ever. There are approximately seven years from now for the country to make enormous preparations to host the games. All the best to them!

Reference:

http://www.thestar.com.my/Sport/Other-Sport/2013/09/08/Tokyo-to-host-2020-Olympics.aspx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_Summer_Olympics

 

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