Welcome to The Sports Examiner SPEED READ, a 100 mph (44.7 m/s) review of what happened this week in Olympic sport:
Wednesday: Three days after International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Bach praised how ready the Tokyo organizers are, multiple International Federations criticized the organizing committee for shortcomings in athlete services, cost of accommodations, preparations for heat and the Look of the Games. So now what? It comes down to one word …
Friday: Thirty-five years ago this week, the Olympic Games was at a crossroads as the first-of-its-kind nation-wide Torch Relay started in advance of the 1984 Games in Los Angeles, and the USSR announced that it would boycott the Games. What happened next created the mammoth success we now know as the Olympic Movement.
THE BIG PICTURE
Wednesday: IOC chief Thomas Bach send the clearest signal yet that the days of AIBA’s control over Olympic boxing may be numbered. After all, according to Bach, putting on boxing tournaments isn’t “rocket science.” Wow!
HEARD AFTER HALFTIME
Tuesday: Australia’s star sprinter of the 1960s and 1970s, Raelene Boyle, wants the IOC to revisit the East German doping program that kept her from winning two golds in the Munich Games. The IOC said too much time has passed, but that’s not what they said in 1982 about restoring Jim Thorpe’s 1912 medals! And much more …
Thursday: In an interview on the sidelines of the SportAccord convention in Australia, World Anti-Doping Agency head Craig Reedie (GBR) says he is “unsure” whether the battle again doping is being won; Sebastian Coe’s advice to Tokyo 2020; problems for gymnastics star Kohei Uchimura and Lithuanian swimmer Ruta Meilutyte, and much more …
Tuesday: Second World Cup ready to go in Shanghai (CHN), with American Brady Ellison and Korea’s Chae-Young Kang trying for two wins in a row to start the season!
Thursday: The fourth edition of the IAAF World Relays comes this weekend in Yokohama, Japan. The U.S. has the best team there, but victories are hardly assured in events where passing the stick is required. Check out the top contenders for honors in our preview, with qualifying for the World Championships in Doha on the line.
Tuesday: Grand Finale of the first season of the World Curling Federation’s World Cup, with U.S. star John Shuster’s rink in contention for top honors once again!
Thursday: The 102nd Giro d’Italia starts this weekend, but former winners Vincenzo Nibali (ITA) and Tom Dumoulin (NED) are not the betting favorites. How about undefeated Primoz Roglic of Slovenia!
Wednesday: The Sabre stars are out in Madrid, including no. 1-ranked Eli Dershwitz of the U.S. and no. 8-ranked Anne-Elizabeth Stone, plus a powerful U.S. men’s squad in the Team event.
Thursday: U.S. women’s National Team begins three-game “Send-Off Series” prior to the 2019 Women’s World Cup in France, vs. no. 49 South Africa on Sunday in Santa Clara, California.
Wednesday: After no NHL players participating in the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Korea, they’re all over the 2019 IIHF World Championships in Slovakia. Thanks to this, both Canada and the U.S. are expected to be serious contenders for medals.
Tuesday: The ISSF World Cup for the Shotgun event is getting ready in Changwon (KOR), with American Olympic gold medalists Vincent Hancock and Kim Rhode ready to defend their 2018 World Cup titles.
Thursday: The second leg of the FINA Champions Series is in Budapest on Saturday and Sunday. Sure, first-leg star Sarah Sjostrom of Sweden is back for more, but Hungary’s Olympic superstar Katinka Hosszu figures to get the loudest cheers at the Duna Arena. We have a full preview.
Cycling: Three returning medalists at the women’s Tour of Chongming Island
Cycling: BMX SuperCross in Papdnedal, featuring Dutch stars Kimmann & Smulders
Diving: Wide-open Diving World Series in Kazan as China sends its second team
Judo: Six no. 1-ranked judoka in the Grand Slam in Baku!
Rowing: First World Cup of the season is in Plovdiv, with 157 entries from 24 nations
Rugby: New Zealand, Canada and U.S. try to clinch Tokyo 2020 spots in Langford round
Highlights of the coming week, with previews in the coming days on TheSportsExaminer.com:
● Athletics: Second installment of the IAAF Diamond League in Shanghai (CHN).
● Cycling: The Giro d’Italia continues in Italy with the opening, flat stages.
● Swimming: The fourth leg of the Tyr Pro Swim Series in Bloomington, Indiana.
And much more with a busy week of sport coming up on five continents!