Tag Archives: IOC

Olympic Baseball, Softball, Tokyo 2020 Games Postponed To 2021

The World Baseball Softball Confederation (WBSC) welcomed the difficult joint decision today of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee and Japan Prime Minister Abe Shinzo to postpone the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 to a date no later than the summer of 2021.

The IOC stated that the Tokyo 2020 Games will 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.

Said WBSC President Riccardo Fraccari: “The WBSC welcomes and fully supports the joint decision taken by the IOC, Tokyo 2020 and Japan Prime Minister Abe Shinzo to postpone the start of the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“While the postponement is heartbreaking for athletes — and our baseball and softball players — around the world, the ‘Tokyo 2020’ Games in 2021 can be a symbol of global recovery and solidarity, and be one of the greatest worldwide celebrations and most anticipated moments in the history of sport.

“The WBSC stands in solidarity with the Olympic Movement during this difficult time and will work closely with the IOC to manage the completion of the Olympic qualification process for baseball, which now has more time to be conducted, providing an equal opportunity for the teams and their players.”

Baseball and softball will be making their first Olympic appearance since the 2008 Beijing Games, and are expected to be one of the top attractions of the Games in Japan, where baseball/softball is the most popular sport.

official logo of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Baseball/Softball’s Road Back to the Games

Softball has completed the Tokyo 2020 Olympic qualification process. The six-team tournament will feature host nation Japan, USA (the 2018 WBSC World Champions), Italy (winner of the Europe/Africa Qualifier), Mexico, Canada (winner and runner-up of the Americas Qualifier) and Australia (winner of the Asia/Oceania Qualifier).

Four of six teams have qualified for the Olympic baseball event at Tokyo 2020, including host Japan, Israel (the winner of the Europe/Africa Qualifier), Korea and Mexico (through the WBSC Premier12 2019). The remaining two teams will advance to the Games through the Americas Qualifier and the Final Qualifier.

The eight-team Americas Baseball Qualifier was scheduled from 22 to 26 March and has been postponed. The Final Qualifier, originally scheduled in early April, has been currently postponed to June. It must however take place following the Americas Qualifier. The second- and third-place finishers of the Americas Qualifier will join Chinese Taipei, Australia, China and the Netherlands in the Final qualifier.

Bach: Nigeria Can Excel in Fencing

International Olympic Committee (IOC) president, Thomas Bach, has called on Nigeria to embrace fencing saying the country can excel in the sport if it gets adequate support.

Bach, who featured in a fencing display at Aduvie International School, Jabi District, Abuja on Thursday said the nation has the wherewithal to be a force in the sport.

International Olympic Committee, IOC, Thomas Bach, Mariah Oguneye,
International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach vs Mariah Oguneye

The display which lasted for roughly three minutes saw the former Olympic champion take on a young Nigerian fencer Mariah Oguneye in a foil encounter as part of his itinerary for his visit to Nigeria of which highpoint was the commissioning of Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ANOCA) Headquarters in the Nigerian capital.

“He commended Nigeria for showing commitment to the sport noting that the country’s hosting of the African Championship should serve as a foundation for the growth of the sport in the country,” Nigerian fencing boss Adeyinka Samuel said.

International Olympic Committee, IOC, Thomas Bach, Mariah Oguneye,
International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach vs Mariah Oguneye

Oguneye was so elated about the privilege saying she dreamt to fence for Nigeria at the Olympics in the near future. “This is a rare privilege for me to have a friendly contest with the IOC President. I am determined to use this opportunity to pursue my dream of fencing for Nigeria at the Olympics,” she said.

Elegbeleye, Oshodi, Suleiman, Others Heads NOC Commissions

For the smooth running of activities of the Nigeria Olympic Committee (NOC), the board has constituted new commissions and committees to pilot its affairs within the stipulated rules and regulations that govern the Olympic Movement.

The new commissions and committees will engage in a range of activities throughout the year. They will support the Olympic Movement and help progress in topics such as the development of “Sport for All”, cooperation with public and private organisations to place sport at the service of mankind. They will also see to the promotion of ethics and fair play, fight against doping, place premium awareness on environmental problems, as well as seek financial and educational support amongst others for the NOC.

Habu Gumel

Engr. Habu Gumel, President, Nigeria Olympic Committee and member, International Olympic Committee (IOC), congratulated all the appointed individuals and charged them to bring their “A” game to the assignment before them.

Gumel said, “Your appointment is in recognition of your wealth of experience and outstanding contribution to Nigerian Sports and the Olympic Movement. So, it is therefore hoped that you will bring to bear your expertise and experience in achieving the goals of your commission and the NOC in general”, he concluded.

The Marketing and Sponsorship Commission is headed by a former Commissioner of Sports in Lagos, Barrister Wahid Enitan Oshodi, Abdul A. Ibrahim as the Vice and Emmanuel Nweri is their Secretary. The Liaison Commission have Engr. Habu Gumel as Chairman, Chief Solomon Ogba as the Vice, Mrs. Margaret Binga, Phemmy Adetula and Engr Sani Ndanusa as members and Mr. Olabanji Oladapo as the Secretary.

Former Chairman, House Committee on Sport in the House of Representatives, Hon Mohammed Bello Suleiman is the Chairman of Sport and Environment Commission, Gambo Umar Labbo as Vice and Dano Garba as Secretary. Engr Ishaku Tikon will head the Olympafrica Development Committee, with Babatunde Fatayi-Williams as Vice-chairman.

Hon Gbenga Elegbeleye, former Director General, National Sports Commission chairs the Ethics and Good Governance Commission, Chijioke Okoli as the vice chairman with 7 other members.

Boxers Worldwide Left in Limbo as Their Olympic Future Remains Unclear

Boxers from around the world who have been training for years towards their Olympic dreams continue to be left in the dark about where, when and how they can qualify for the Tokyo Olympic Games in a little more than a year.

This is the main concern of the International Boxing Association after taking note of the statements made today by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) regarding the ad-hoc inquiry committee report to the Executive Board.

While AIBA has provided not one, but four comprehensive reports over the course of the last year to the IOC EB for review, it is very surprising that the IOC are unable to provide a conclusive decision regarding boxing’s Olympic future at this time. Given that an additional report was submitted on February 20th2019 and assurances were given that an official hearing and inquiry would be made before the IOC EB meeting in March 2019, AIBA is gravely concerned by the indifference shown towards the process and preparation of athletes for the Games.

Since late 2017, there were claims of concern regarding AIBA and in response AIBA has undergone a complete transformation, working positively with a number of Olympic partners to rebuild all areas of the organisation. Improvements have been made on all fronts and the organization has clearly demonstrated its dedication to moving forward and improving its practices for the sake of the sport of Boxing and its athletes.

Photo credit: AIBA

Tom Virgets, AIBA Executive Director said: “We have done everything in our power to work with the IOC, providing them with numerous reports and documentation. There is no more information left to give; it is now time to wrap up this inquiry and move forward. This further delay has a direct impact on our athletes, it is a complete disaster for boxers around the world who are being left in limbo without any support or access funding. We don’t understand why we can’t put the well-being of boxers ahead of anything else, it is time to move on – our boxers are waiting, our officials are waiting and our fans are waiting.”

IOC and Samsung Extend Partnership Through To 2028

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd, (Samsung) today announced an extension to their global Olympic partnership through to 2028.

The announcement was made in Seoul, Republic of Korea, at a signing ceremony with IOC President Thomas Bach and Jay Y. Lee, Vice Chairman at Samsung Electronics; IOC Marketing Commission Chair Tsunekazu Takeda; Dong Jin Koh, President and CEO of the IT&Mobile Communications Division at Samsung Electronics; and Younghee Lee, CMO and Executive Vice President, Samsung Electronics.

Samsung will continue as the Worldwide Olympic Partner in the wireless communications equipment and computing equipment category, including the ability to promote the Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and 5G features of that equipment. As part of the agreement, the IOC and Samsung will further develop their strategic digital collaboration to engage young generations around the world in order to promote the power of sport and the values of Olympism.

IOC President Thomas Bach said: “I am delighted that we will be building on two decades of partnership with Samsung for another 10 years. Over this time, we have built a partnership combining Olympic excellence and Samsung’s industry-leading wireless communications technology. Together, we are able to connect with and inspire Olympic athletes and fans around the world, and we look forward to working with Samsung to build the digital future of the Olympic Games.”

Dong Jin Koh, President and CEO of the IT&Mobile Communications Division at Samsung Electronics, said: “As a Worldwide Olympic Partner for the last 22 years, Samsung has been inspired by the spirit of hope, friendship and unity. Through our innovative wireless and computing equipment which are able to support AI, VR, AR and 5G technology, we hope to spread the excitement of the Games so that fans and athletes around the world can stay connected and share in the journey to achieve greatness at the highest level of sportsmanship.”

IOC Marketing Commission Chair Tsunekazu Takeda said: “Samsung is a global success story and a brand recognised around the world. Samsung understands and promotes the Olympic values through technology and marketing campaigns that help break down barriers and engage new audiences. From a commercial perspective, our extension with Samsung to 2028 builds on the long-term agreements reached recently with existing and new Partners, and demonstrates the long-term strength and appeal of our marketing programmes.”

Samsung will continue its support beyond the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020, and will support every edition of the Olympic Games through to Los Angeles 2028, as well as all the Youth Olympic Games through to 2028. Samsung will also continue to support the IOC, the National Olympic Committees and their teams. Samsung’s first Games as a Worldwide TOP Partner were the Olympic Winter Games Nagano 1998. Samsung will also continue as a Worldwide Partner of the International Paralympic Committee, extending a relationship that began in 2006.

In collaboration with the IOC and the Organising Committees, Samsung plans to continue its Athlete Phone Programme. This programme provides Limited Olympic Edition Galaxy phones to all participating Olympic and Paralympic athletes to enhance the athletes’ Games-time experience, help them stay in touch with their family and friends, and capture and share their journeys.

IOC Tags Aruna Quadri Africa’s All Time Table Tennis Best

Two years after becoming the first African to reach the quarterfinal round of the table tennis event at the Olympic Games, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has tagged the Nigerian as Africa’s most successful Olympic table tennis player of all time.

The IOC published an interview with the Nigerian on its official website recently and they lauded the Oyo State-born athlete for etching his name in the annals of world table tennis history in Brazil.

The IOC wrote, “Two decades after he took up table tennis on the streets of Oyo, in south-western Nigeria, Quadri Aruna became the first African to reach an Olympic quarterfinal.”

Aruna Quadri

Quadri reveals in the interview how he beat players “far better” than him at Rio 2016, while recalling his early battles to succeed against all odds and stresses the significant debt he owes his talented wife.

“I actually had no confidence against Chuang Chih-Yuan [Chinese Taipei’s four-time world tour champion, whom Aruna faced in the third round] because earlier in January that year I lost in Germany in the first round 4-0 to him. So in Rio I was like, “I have lost before, now I have nothing left to lose, he is a much better player than me.” So, I said to myself, “Just give your best, play and enjoy.” Then I was able to win the first two sets and the match was a different spirit entirely.

“Against Timo Boll [Germany’s three-time Olympic medal winner, whom Aruna played in the fourth round] I was feeling the same way. I was aware the whole world was watching. But before Timo was able to understand my game; I was already 3-0 and it was really too late for him to come back. I stepped up my game and played without pressure because I knew all the players in the Olympic Games are very, very good.

Aruna Quadri

“My performance in Rio really made table tennis much more popular in Nigeria. Whenever I am in the airport now so many officials recognise me now and on the streets, not just where I came from, so many people wave.

“More priority needs to be given to table tennis. Governments need to put people who want to work in sport in the right positions. I am supporting so many players, about six juniors. When I was young no one was able to support me, even with equipment, but these days I am able to help them, to give them equipment and let them play for free.

Aruna Quadri and wife, Ganiyat after winning the 2018 ITTF Challenge Seamaster Nigeria Open on Sunday

My wife was a very good player. Now she doesn’t play professionally. She plays for pleasure, but she is a very good training partner and sometimes she beats me. I am very thankful to her, she is always looking after the kids when I am not at home, which is one of the reasons she is not playing professionally anymore,” Quadri said.

For Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in Japan, Quadri said: “Like every athlete, I want to do better than I have done before. I want better results in Tokyo. I am always thinking about it. That’s why I am playing in more and more tournaments: it’s preparation for difficult matches in Tokyo.”

Senegal To Host Fourth Edition Of The Summer Youth Olympic Games 2022

The fourth edition of the Summer Youth Olympic Games 2022 (YOG) will be held in Dakar, Senegal. The decision was unanimously taken today by a show of hands from the full International Olympic Committee (IOC) membership during the IOC Session in Buenos Aires. This is the first time the Youth Olympic Games will be organised in Africa.

Four African countries* were in the running and, after thorough analysis, the Evaluation Commission and the Executive Board determined that Dakar, Senegal, presented the best value proposition and the greatest opportunities at this moment in time.

Dakar 2022 presented a visionary, ambitious and technically sound YOG project that addresses the long-term aims of the country.

Senegal has a large youth population and views the YOG as a catalyst for engaging young people and developing the country’s sport and youth policy.

Significant investments are already being made toward youth and sport as part of the country’s overarching framework “Plan Sénégal émergent”, which sets out the President’s vision to 2035.

IOC President Thomas Bach said: “Africa is united behind Senegal to host the Youth Olympic Games 2022. With a young population and a passion for sport, it is time for Africa, it is time for Senegal.”

The competitions and activities will be held across three cities, showing the many facets of Senegal: the historic capital of Dakar; the new city of Diamniadio; and the natural beauty of Saly on the coast.

The President of Senegal, Macky Sall, who made the journey to Buenos Aires for the historic IOC decision said: “Senegal and its young people are proud of the honour you have bestowed upon us, in entrusting the organisation of the Youth Olympic Games 2022 to our country.

IOC President Thomas Bach during the first day of the 133rd Session at the Hilton Hotel.
Photography by Greg Martin/IOC

“In fact, it is the whole of Africa, the birthplace of humankind through its history and the youngest continent through its demographics, which will welcome the young athletes of the world in 2022.”

Considering the unifying power of the Games, the IOC is pleased to count on the four parties, who have all endorsed the decision of the IOC and pledged full support to the selected host.

The decision took place during the 3rd edition of the Youth Olympic Games, currently taking place in Buenos Aires from 6 to 18 October.

* Botswana, Nigeria, Senegal and Tunisia

Summer Youth Olympic Games 2022, YOG 2022, Senegal 2022, International Olympic Committee, IOC,