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Olympic dreams on hold

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Olympic dreams are on hold for thousands of athletes across the world.

The 2020 Olympic Games, set to take place in Tokyo, has been postponed until next year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The announcement was made in a conference between International Olympic Committee (IOC) President, Thomas Bach, and Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe.

Newcastle-based skateboarder Poppy Starr Olsen, who was primed to make her Olympic debut, said she understood the decision. 

“I think I kind of saw it coming to be honest, that or it being cancelled,” she said.

“I’m just glad it’s still going ahead.

“I think it’s the best decision to ensure everyone’s safety [and] I can’t see that there was any other option.”

Poppy said she was not sure how this postponement would affect her qualification.

She added her training schedule had changed because of the closure of skate parks.

“When this whole thing settles down a bit, I’ll be skating like I do all the time,” she said.

“I’m just looking to try and stay fit at this time, even if I can’t skate.”

She believed athletes would all be affected differently but knew that “everyone [was] in the same boat”.

For Poppy, the Olympics was a chance for her to represent Australia.

“I’m a proud Aussie,” she said.

“I was looking forward to going to Japan and experiencing every part of it, from the ceremonies to the village to hanging and skating with all my buddies.”

During the conference, Mr Bach said he wanted the Games’ postponement to be a beacon of hope to the world during troubled times and believed the Olympic flame could represent light at the end of the tunnel.

Go to olympic.org for more information or updates.

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