The coronavirus pandemic has hit the biggest sporting event in the world. The International Olympic Committee postponed the 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games, officials announced Tuesday. The event was scheduled to start July 24 in Tokyo. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Tuesday he and the head of the International Olympic Committee agreed to delay the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo for about a year.
Canada and Australia will not send athletes to the Summer Olympic Games this year if the games aren’t delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic, officials said Sunday. In a statement, the Canadian Olympic and Paralympic Committee said it was “urgently” calling on the organizations that organize the games to postpone the event for one year. “This is not solely about athlete health — this is about public health,” the group said.
NBA legend Kobe Bryant has been killed in a helicopter crash along with his daughter and seven other people. The 41-year-old, who played for the LA Lakers throughout his glittering 20-year career, died after the aircraft crashed on a steep hillside in thick fog. Bryant and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna were among nine people on board when the helicopter crashed on Sunday morning, about 30 miles from downtown Los Angeles.
Iran’s only female Olympic medallist, Kimia Alizadeh, says she has defected. Alizadeh, 21, posted on social media that she had left Iran because she didn’t want to be part of “hypocrisy, lies, injustice and flattery”. Alizadeh did not say where she was, amid reports that she has been training in the Netherlands. She made history for Iran in 2016 when she won a bronze medal in taekwondo at the Rio Olympics.
A world-renowned American free solo climber has died attempting to descend the side of a cliff face. Brad Gobright, 31, fell around 300m (1,000ft) to his death in El Potrero Chico in northern Mexico. Gobright was best known for free soloing, or climbing without any safety gear, but at the time the two were abseiling, a technique using ropes.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s lawyers won a courtroom bid Thursday to block a Nevada woman accusing the soccer superstar of raping her in Las Vegas in 2009 from digging into the validity of their 2010 confidentiality agreement and $375,000 hush-money payment. U.S. Magistrate Judge Daniel Albregts told Kathryn Mayorga’s attorney that it will be up to a higher-level judge to decide if her effort to obtain more money advances to trial or is diverted to closed-door arbitration.
Belgian Paralympian Marieke Vervoort has ended her own life through euthanasia. The 40-year-old – who had an incurable degenerative muscle disease – won gold and silver at the London 2012 Paralympics, and two further medals at Rio 2016. Euthanasia is legal in Belgium and in 2008 the athlete signed papers which would at some stage allow a doctor to end her life.
This month’s El Clasico between Barcelona and Real Madrid has been postponed because of fears of civil unrest. The match was scheduled for 26 October but there have been days of protest in Barcelona after nine Catalan separatist leaders were jailed on Monday. Both Barcelona and Real Madrid disagreed with calls to switch the game to Madrid.
Four Bulgarian football fans have been detained after their game against England had to be stopped twice due to racism. Bulgaria’s ministry of interior confirmed the group are being questioned by police over their involvement in racist behavior at the Euro 2020 qualifier in Sofia on Monday night, which England won 6-0. Bulgaria has come in for heavy criticism for the conduct of home fans during the game.
Winning her 24th and 25th world championship medals in beam and floor Sunday put the United States gymnast top of the all-time medal charts for the championships. Biles won five gold medals this week. Biles hasn’t confirmed whether she’ll continue to compete after next year’s Olympics, so this week may have been her last at the world championships.