After Spectator Ban – Tokyo Olympics 2020 Announces New Protocols for Medal Ceremonies

Published 07/14/2021, 11:06 AM EDT
Tokyo 2020 Games Delivery Officer Hidemasa Nakamura, Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto and Tokyo 2020 CEO Toshiro Muto attend a meeting with IOC President Thomas Bach (not pictured) at the Tokyo 2020 headquarters in Tokyo, Japan July 13, 2021. Takashi Aoyama/Pool via REUTERS


At a normal Olympics, all fans and athletes remember is that they get presented with the medals and exchange greetings with the presenters and other officials. Then the flag goes up and the national anthem is sung. But as the pandemic is raging across the world, Tokyo Olympics 2020 has decided to cut some of these traditions.

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IOC President Thomas Bach arrives at a meeting with Tokyo 2020 President Seiko Hashimoto at the Tokyo 2020 Headquarters on July 13, 2021 in Tokyo, Japan. Takashi Aoyama/Pool via REUTERS

In a press conference, Thomas Bach, the president of the International Olympic Committee announced that the medal winners in Tokyo will not be given the medal around their neck. The regular proceedings had a guest who would give them the medal and the memento. However, athletes will now have to pick up the medal from the tray and wear it themselves.

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“The medals will not be given around the neck. They will be presented to the athlete on a tray and then the athlete will take the medal him or herself,” Bach said.

How will the Tokyo Olympics 2020 medals be handled?

The gold medal is displayed after the Tokyo 2020 medal design unveiling ceremony during Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games. (Photo by Atsushi Tomura/Getty Images)

Moreover, the medals will be handled with disinfected gloves before the players are given the medals. “It will be made sure that the person who will put the medal on tray will do so only with disinfected gloves so that the athlete can be sure that nobody touched them before,” Bach added.

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The athletes and the officials will have to wear their masks during the medal ceremonies. And to ensure there is no spread of the virus, there won’t be any handshakes and hugs during the ceremony.

These precautions are in place because of the COVID-19 pandemic. With the whole of Japan under emergency, there won’t be any fans in the stadiums and arenas for the games. Tokyo has been reporting over 500 cases for the past few weeks and with the vaccination of the Japanese public is below 20 percent, hence there is a lot of scare regarding the virus and the Olympic games. Let’s hope the virus doesn’t come near the Olympic village.

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Bhavishya Mittal

1226 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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