The fast-moving situation came to a head when the organisers of Tokyo 2020 and the International Olympic Committee issued a joint statement on Tuesday afternoon.
‘In the present circumstances and based on the information provided by the WHO today [Tuesday], the IOC president and the prime minister of Japan have concluded that the Games of the XXXII Olympiad in Tokyo must be rescheduled to a date beyond 2020 but not later than summer 2021, to safeguard the health of the athletes, everybody involved in the Olympic Games and the international community,’ it read.
Guernsey 400m ace Cam Chalmers, despite days earlier commenting that training was ‘business as usual’, had been unsurprised given the drastic turn of events that recently saw the United Kingdom enter lockdown.
‘It’s a real shame, but definitely the right decision,’ said Chalmers.
Even before the announcement, Great Britain had followed the example of Canada and threatened to withdraw.
Guernsey Athletics development officer Tom Druce had responded with ‘for certain’ when asked if postponement would be the correct choice.
‘I’ve spoken to Cam and we’re both of the same view that it’s unlikely the Olympics will happen this year,’ said Druce before official confirmation.
‘I think the idea of shifting it a few weeks later or a couple of months later, that looks likely to create more confusion than making a straight decision to postpone it back 12 or 24 months.
‘I think it’s harsh on athletes as well, because there’s been a lot of talk about how unfair it is still to hold it and expect athletes to prepare as best they can.'
78% of the over 4,000 athletes responding to a mass poll by The Athletics Association also supported postponement.