Arisa Tsubata, 27, right, a nurse and a boxer, spars with her trainer Tomoko Okada at Tajima boxing gym in Sayama, Saitama Prefecture. Photo: REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
tokyo 2020 olympics

Boxing nurse's Olympic dream crushed by COVID-19

10 Comments
By Ju-min Park and Kim Kyung Hoon

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10 Comments
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I feel for all of the athletes, but please try to remember that many people have lost their businesses- and those were the lucky ones- as others have lost their lives or the lives of loved ones. Not being able to compete is sad but it is certainly not the end of the world.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

So who is this event meant to be a 'light of hope' for now? Public doesn't want it, dedicated newcomers can't compete. Corporate athletes and sponsors must be the last of the hopefuls.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@Vreth, it wasn't just sponsers and athletes that took a heavy blow. All the businesses that were hoping for tourist or providing services to athletes got hit hard. From taxi services, hotels, restaurants etc. There are a lot of people who will be out of a job once it is canceled. The events require massive amount of workers for a lot of stuff from the service industry to the food sector. The so called big sonspors that you mention also had hired a lot of people to keep it going. Once it is cancel, then is time for these big companies to start to laying off workers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Someone should tell the lady that appearing at the Olympics is no better a dream than someone else becoming a train driver, or owning their own home, or starting a family and managing to raise them. Some people disadvantaged in their health or whatever merely dream of overcoming their disadvantages.

It is not customary for the state to risk people's health or pay vast sums of money to make those other dreams come true.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Olympic dreams. it is an elite event. Top athletes in marquee events are corporate sponsored and float in on a sea of money. There is little place for determined and talented athletes such as Ms. Tsubata. Attendant to that is the IOC, culling athletes to suit their whims, which exclude such as Ms. Tsubata. Her's is not just a cautionary tale, but indicates that there is a politics involved controlled by the governing organization, which is not democratic or honors the true intent of athletics.

As for other comments regarding the business end of the Olympics:

The Olympics is essentially, a three week event. 16 days. No viable business is dependent on the Olympics as more than a very brief stream of income. Such employ attendant to the games would be temporary. No one's ongoing livelihood is attached to the Olympics, except large companies that provide temporary workers or preconstruction. Many of the workers at the Olympics are volunteers. The costs to the public will never be recovered and as a means of job creation it is an incredibly faulty, if not completely fallacious strategy.

The economic impact of the Olympics is measured in the costs to the taxpayers, which is in excess of 20 billion USD, with some estimates hovering around 35 billion USD.

“This was a disaster in the making in the first place, even before COVID,” says Victor Matheson, a sports economist who focuses on the Olympics.

For Tokyo, most of the bill will fall to Japanese taxpayers. (About $5.6 billion of the Tokyo budget is private money, including $1.3 billion from the IOC. The organization has also pledged another $650 million to support the postponement.) That leaves a loss of up to almost 30 billion USD. Which far exceeds that of any loss to any business hoping to profit off the games.

The Tokyo Olympics is a fool's errand.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

"As an athlete, considering fellow athletes waiting for this moment, and especially seeing my chance being taken away, I think the Olympics should happen," she said.

But, as a nurse, she said it "might be difficult" for Japan to hold the Olympic Games if the spread of the coronavirus is not contained.

Denial and cognitive dissonance are the reason the games are still are being pushed through. As a nurse, you absolutely know the Olympics should not happen. so what about if you reverse the statements: "I think the Olympics shouldn't happen, but as an athlete, I might like to try anyway" ...?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Boxing nurse's Olympic dream crushed by COVID-19

Crushed by the hysterical anti-Olympics mob, not by the virus.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Crushed by the hysterical anti-Olympics mob, not by the virus.

If the experts in the field of public health are the ones saying the games can't be safely held your argument is invalid. It is irrelevant what anybody else says when the people with the expertise and experience argue against the the Olympic. The people saying the opposite would then be the mob.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Tsubata got into boxing about three years ago to lose weight, but her training coaches quickly encouraged her to compete in the sport and she went on to win Japan's national boxing championship for the middleweight division in 2019.

That is impressive. Hopefully she can make it the next time.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Japanese are overreacting. California reporting roughly 2000 cases a day. Japan is reporting about 5000. If CA were the size of Japan, CA would have 6000 cases a day. The foolish governor who has needlessly destroyed countless businesses is nonetheless reaffirming a 6/15 end to restrictions in CA. Japan is reporting a surge from very low levels to low levels. Everyone wears masks. Overseas fans are not coming to Japan. Japanese baseball has fans in the stands. A few thousands athletes and staff who will most likely be vaccinated and will be restricting their movements is not going to endanger the general population. Asking an overly frightened and misinformed general population their opinion on the Olympics is ridiculous. Let the athletes compete.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

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