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Qualification retained, age limits extended in revised Tokyo 2020 qualification principles

Xinhua | Updated: 2020-04-09 11:30
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The Olympic rings are pictured at dusk through a steel fence, at the waterfront area of the Odaiba Marine Park, after the postponing of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, due to the outbreak of COVID 19, in Tokyo, Japan, March 25, 2020. [Photo/Agencies]

BEIJING - Allocated quotas remain valid and International Federations (IFs) could extend the age eligibility criteria for the postponed Tokyo Olympic Games, according to the revised Tokyo 2020 qualification principles released by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on Wednesday.

According to the revised rules, the new qualification period deadline is June 29, 2021, and the final entries deadline is July 5, 2021. IFs could now redesign their own qualification processes that have been impacted by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

For the roughly 5,000 athlete quota places yet to be assigned, the IOC encourages IFs to follow a like-for-like approach in the qualification process and give the IFs full discretion in deciding deadlines and pathways for ranking-based allocation.

"A sport-specific balance needs to be found between protecting those athletes who were close to qualifying based on the previous 2020 deadlines and also ensuring the participation of the best athletes at the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 by allowing the top performers of the 2021 season to qualify," the IOC suggested.

Regarding the age limit concerns raised by the postponement, the principle gives IFs the rights to extend the upper limit for those who meet the requirement in 2020 but not in 2021 and to review the eligibility for those who do not qualify for the 2020 Games due to lower limit restrictions.

"Athlete health is the guiding principle in the scheduling of any remaining Olympic qualification events. With the postponement of the Olympic Games from 2020 until 2021, the IOC has urged that any such events be confirmed only once the COVID-19 impacts can be assessed, allowing fair access and appropriate preparation for all competing athletes and teams," the IOC stressed.

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