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Head of Tokyo Organizing Committee says they could still cancel the Olympics — maybe

It’s not a reassuring sign as more and more athletes, coaches, and officials are testing positive upon arrival in Japan.

Olympic rings at Odori Park ahead of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games on July 20, 2021 in Sapporo Hokkaido, Japan. Photo by Masashi Hara/Getty Images

Those Olympic Games you thought were happening are still probably happening. But if the COVID-19 cases

Toshirō Mutō, the former deputy governor of the Bank of Japan and now head of the Tokyo Organizing Committee, said today that while they intend to have the Games go forward, a spike in cases around the area would necessitate a change and possibly cancelation of the competitions.

“We can’t predict what will happen with the number of coronavirus cases. So we will continue discussions if there is a spike in cases,” Muto said.

“We have agreed that based on the coronavirus situation, we will convene five-party talks again. At this point, the coronavirus cases may rise or fall, so we will think about what we should do when the situation arises.”

67 cases of COVID-19 have been found in Japan among those with a credential for Tokyo 2020, which includes coaches and officials for the 29 sports.

The first event of the games is in women’s softball, which begins at 8 p.m. EST tonight when Australia faces Japan in softball to open pool play, with the United States taking on Italy at 11 p.m. EST. Mexico faces Canada follows at 2 a.m., and all games will take place at the Fukushima Azuma Baseball Stadium about four hours north of the Olympic Village in Tokyo.