GB to follow Canada, Aust stance on Games

Britain is ready to follow Canada and Australia in refusing to participate in the Tokyo Olympics if the Games are not postponed due to the coronavirus, British Olympic Association (BOA) chairman Hugh Robertson said on Monday.

Canada and Australia have said they will not go if the Summer Games are not put back to 2021 from their current July 24-August 9 dates.

Postponement looks inevitable, with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and Japanese government announcing a month-long consultation.

"If the virus continues as predicted by the government...I don't think there's any way that we could send a team," Robertson told Sky Sports.

"I don't see there's any way the athletes and Team GB could be ready by then.

"We've already said to the IOC that we think that their four-week pause is absolutely the right thing to do and that we can't see any way that this can go ahead as things are constituted at the moment, and I suspect that we'll be joining Canada and Australia shortly."

Robertson said elite training facilities were closed around the country and athletes could not be ready in time for a July start. "And I think there's a second issue which is about the appropriateness of holding an Olympics at a time like this," he added.

Meanwhile, the president of the Norwegian Olympic Committee is recommending that athletes from the country are not sent to the Tokyo Games if they take place as scheduled.

Berit Kjoll says "it will not be possible to carry out a Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics in July as planned" because of the growing coronavirus outbreak.