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Tokyo candidate for the world athletics championships

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TOKYO (AP) – Tokyo’s $1.4 billion National Stadium, built by the Japanese government for last year’s Olympics, is being considered a site for the world championships. Athletics.

An inspection team from World Athletics – the sport’s governing body – met Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike on Wednesday and was due to visit the stadium on Thursday.

The next world championships, which have been postponed from 2021 to make way for the Olympics, will be held in July in Eugene, Oregon. Budapest, Hungary is expected to host in 2023.

Tokyo would be considered one of the favorites for 2025. This choice is expected in July. The location of 2027 has not yet been chosen.

Antti Pihlakoski, the chairman of the inspection team, praised Tokyo. But neither he nor Koike answered questions during a brief photo opportunity at the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building.

Pihlakoski said World Athletics had four candidates for 2025. He did not name them, but they would be Tokyo, Nairobi, the Kenyan capital, Singapore and a site in Poland.

“I believe there is no other city in the world that could have organized (Olympic) competitions during the COVID period, and did so in a very good way,” he said. “And everyone in the sport owes you a very big, deep thank you.

Sebastian Coe, the head of World Athletics, said last year in Japan that he wanted to bring the championships to the city. Coe is not known to be in Tokyo this time. Many World Athletics sponsorship deals are negotiated through Dentsu Inc., the Japanese advertising and public relations giant.

Three of World Athletics’ four main sponsors are Japan-based companies: sportswear maker Asics, watchmaker Seiko and Japanese electronics company TDK. The other is the Qatar National Bank.

Dentsu was the main driver in securing over $3 billion in local sponsorship for the Tokyo Olympics and is a powerful player in Japanese business, politics and media. Much of Dentsu’s influence lies in sports marketing and handling broadcast rights issues.

Tokyo held the world championships in 1991 and Osaka hosted them in 2007. Koike said she remembers the 1991 championships and Carl Lewis’ world record of 9.86 seconds in the 100 meters.

“His overwhelming run is still fresh in the memories of everyone in Tokyo and all over Japan. And I, too, remember those days clearly,” Koike said.

Coe, a two-time Olympic 1,500m gold medalist and former member of Britain’s parliament, is a power player in his own right and is seen as a possible successor to International Olympic Committee President Thomas Bach. Bach’s term ends in 2025.

The Japanese city of Sapporo is also among the favorites to clinch the 2030 Winter Olympics. It competes with Salt Lake City and Vancouver.

The IOC is expected to name the site for the Winter Olympics in May 2023 during meetings in Mumbai, India. He could also do a double prize and name the host city of 2034.

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