A Tokyo Olympics gymnastics qualifier which was supposed be held in next month and was hoped to feature US superstar Simone Biles among its participants was canceled as the coronavirus pandemic continued to cast a shadow over the Games this year.
The Japan Gymnastics Association declared the scrapping of the Artistic Gymnastics World Cup on April 4 & 5 only a few days after they said it would be held without spectators.
The JGA told in a statement, “Due to the impact of the spread of coronavirus infections in Europe and cancellations of World Cups in other countries, many athletes and judges decided not to participate in the event.”
According to the organizing committee of Tokyo 2020, a rhythmic gymnastics Olympic test event scheduled for April 6 is still going to be held according to the planned schedule.
The cancelation comes as concerns develop about whether the Games will open on July 24 as planned or not.
Organizers and the International Olympic Committee demand that preparations proceed as anticipated, despite cancellations and changes to events ranging from qualifiers to torch relays.
Organizers of Tokyo 2020 said on Tuesday that they took the “heartbreaking” decision to scale back parts of the journey of flame across Japan, beginning with its arrival in the country on Friday.
A recent news survey showed that 70 percent of Japanese respondents said they did not think the Games could be held as planned.