An open letter to the New Zealand Team from NZOC President Mike Stanley
To the New Zealand Team,
Today we learnt that the International Olympic Committee is considering a number of scenarios around the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, including postponement.
In the circumstances, a review of the options is the only realistic way forward. We note that a cancellation has been ruled out.
The health and wellbeing of the New Zealand Team is our main priority and the global situation remains uncertain.
The different scenarios are yet to be confirmed and will be worked through over the coming month.
For our New Zealand athletes this news will be incredibly disruptive. We know years of training go into an Olympic Games performance.
We are aware, however, that our athletes, and those around the world have been increasingly impacted by a lack of access to training facilities, disruption to qualification events and uncertainty around the environment they may face in Tokyo.
Athletes need a safe, and fair, playing field to compete and, right now, the widespread and evolving impact of COVID-19 is not allowing that to happen.
We have the utmost confidence that members of the New Zealand Team will have the resilience, focus and determination to work through any scenario we may face and be ready for the Tokyo Olympic Games.
We will now work with our partners at HPSNZ, National Sporting Organisations and our Athletes’ Commission to listen to feedback and adjust our planning to ensure our athletes are both supported and ready to perform to their best at the Tokyo Olympic Games.
We will also urge the IOC to finalise their decision as soon as possible, bringing clarity to our sports and athletes.
We know our athletes will adapt to this change and continue to inspire pride and excellence in all New Zealanders.
Mike Stanley, NZOC President