Roger Federer says athletes need to know if Tokyo Olympics are going ahead

Tennis ace Roger Federer has called on organisers of the Tokyo Olympics to tell athletes if the event is still going ahead, adding he is still in two minds as to whether to compete.

The event was delayed by a year, and is now slated to go ahead between 23 July and 8 August, but uncertainty remains around the games, amid the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic.

Japan is battling a surge in infections, with a state of emergency around the capital Tokyo being extended until at least the end of May.

“It’s difficult,” Federer told Switzerland‘s Leman Bleu television.

“We’re not hearing much. That makes me think the games will happen, even if I’ve heard that lots of people in Tokyo are against the games.

“Honestly I don’t know what to think. I would love to play in the Olympics, win a medal for Switzerland, that would make me so proud.

“But if that doesn’t happen due to the situation, I would be the first to understand.

“But I think what the athletes need is a decision: is it happening or isn’t it?

“At the moment, we have the impression that it will. We know it’s a fluid situation. And also you can also decide as an athlete if you want to go. If you feel there’s a lot of resistance, maybe it’s better not to go. I don’t know.”

A petition calling for the games to be cancelled has been signed by more than 350,000 people, and some towns have dropped plans to host Olympics athletes during the event, throwing fresh doubt on the games.

Naomi Osaka and Kei Nishikori, Japan’s top ranked tennis players, have also shared concerns about the games going ahead, saying that holding the Olympics while the pandemic is still ongoing still needs to be carefully discussed.

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