Health Ministry restrictions threaten to disrupt Israeli athletes' preparations for next year's Olympic Games in Tokyo • A meeting will soon be held between the heads of the judo and sailing associations and the Minister of Health and his deputy with the aim of finding an outline that will benefit all parties
Uri Sasson. An outline that will work well with all parties
Olympic sports in Israel are uncertain about the holding of the Olympic Games in Tokyo next summer. The main goal is to return to the international arena and compete as early as next month.
The two leading Olympic sports in Israel, judo and sailing, plan to go to two competitions in the near future: the sailors for the European Surfing Championships (Switzerland), and the judos for a competition that is to be held in September in Croatia.
Currently, the main problem of the Olympic athletes is not the departure from Israel and the competition in the EU countries, but mainly the return to Israel, which according to the guidelines of the Ministry of Health requires 14 days of isolation. In an Olympic year (the year before the Olympics themselves) this is of course impossible, because it hurts the athletes' training program.
In the coming week, the heads of the branches are scheduled to talk to Health Minister Yuli Edelstein and his deputy, Prof. Itamar Grotto, in order to find an outline that will allow Olympic athletes to compete and allow them to be tested by Corona before and after departure - all to avoid isolating important competitions.
The sailors plan to travel to Switzerland for the European Surfing Championships // Photo: Assaf Kliger
It should be noted that the international competitions have been paralyzed for five months, and it was during this time that it was the Israelis who continued to train, due to the fact that the virus hit the country less than Europe, the United States and Asia.
Games without an audience?
A spokesman for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics (the brand name remains the same despite the postponement to 2021) said at a press conference yesterday: "The possibility that the Olympics will be held without an audience is still on the table, but of course no one wants to see it happen. ".
However, a year before the start of the games, the winds in Japan are talking about the fact that the emerging compromise at the moment is games to be held anyway, but under closed stands. The chairman of the International Olympic Committee, Thomas Bach, and other powerful figures in the international Olympic community outright ruled out this possibility.