Oly Games chief to make fans call by March

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Organisers of the postponed Tokyo Olympics expect to make a decision on whether to let spectators attend the Games by next month or March.

The Japanese government and the International Olympic Committee made the decision last March to postpone the 2020 Olympics until July 2021 because of the pandemic.

Organisers have stressed they are determined to press ahead with holding the Games this year, even as COVID-19 cases surge and the Japanese government announce plans to widen a state of emergency to stem the spread of the virus.

So far, no decision has been made whether spectators will be allowed into venues during the Games and ticket holders who no longer wish to attend have already applied for refunds.

"I think we will have to make a very difficult decision around February to March," Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee President Yoshiro Mori said at an online lecture hosted by Kyodo News Agency.

Daily virus cases hit a record 7,882 last Friday, for a tally of nearly 300,000, public broadcaster NHK said.

A recent poll conducted by Kyodo found that 80 per cent of those surveyed think the Tokyo Games should either be postponed again or cancelled because of rising coronavirus cases.

However, Mori said it was "absolutely impossible" to postpone the Games again, largely because the organising committee would not be able to keep its staff for another year.