The International Olympic Committee (IOC) chief Thomas Bach stated that the Tokyo Games will have to be canceled if the quadrennial event cannot be held next year due to the coronavirus or COVID-19 outbreak.

In March, the IOC along with the Japanese government took the decision of delaying the Games by a year which was due to start from the month of July because of the deadly novel coronavirus outbreak which started spreading around the world.

Tokyo Olympics Affected by Coronavirus Outbreak

Olympics
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However, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has said the multi-sports event cannot take place in 2021 unless the virus is contained and Bach said he understood his position. The novel coronavirus has infected more than 17,100 people in Japan, causing 797 deaths. "Quite frankly, I have some understanding for this, because you can't forever employ 3,000 or 5,000 people in an Organising Committee," Bach told the BBC.

"You can't every year change the entire sports schedule worldwide of all the major federations. You can't have the athletes being in uncertainty." Bach said the IOC was committed to holding the Games next year though it had to be prepared for various scenarios including quarantining athletes. "What could this mean for the life in an Olympic Village?" he said.

"All these different scenarios are under consideration and this is why I'm saying it's a mammoth task, because there are so many different options that it's not easy to address them (now). "When we have a clear view on how the world will look on July 23, 2021, then (we will) take the appropriate decisions."

(With agency inputs)