Olympics Watch: Odds Say 97% Chance Tokyo Games Are Postponed

Sportsbooks seem certain that the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo will be postponed
Brian Good
Mon, March 23, 10:14 AM

With most of the sporting world on hold over the coming months due to the current COVID-19 global pandemic, there are lots of eyes on Japan and whether or not the country plans to proceed with the 2020 Summer Olympics set to take place in Tokyo.

The Opening Ceremony for this summer’s games are scheduled for July 24 and set to get underway at 20:00 JST or 7:00 AM EST. Betfair is currently offering odds on whether or not the event will take place on the scheduled date, and it seems as though bookmakers are almost certain the games will be postponed.

The odds that the Opening Ceremony will be postponed are currently -3300, meaning bookmakers are giving it an implied probability of 97.1 percent. As of March 18 the odds were 50/50.

At least two countries won’t be awaiting an announcement from the host nation. Canada and Australia both said on Sunday that they will not send any athletes to the 2020 games due to concerns about the spread of the virus. Both countries are calling for the games to be postponed until 2021.

As we get closer to the scheduled start date, expect more countries to announce they won’t be sending athletes to Tokyo.

This summer’s games were set to award medals in 339 events across 33 different sports, including the introduction of 3-on-3 basketball and freestyle BMX as first-time competitions in the Olympics.

The Olympics have been postponed on three separate occasions in the past, but it’s been almost 80 years since it last occurred. The 1916 games were cancelled due to World War I, and both the 1940 and 1944 games were cancelled due to World War II.

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