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Will British athletes have to quarantine in Tokyo?

The rearranged Olympics are scheduled to start next month.

The Tokyo Olympics may be starting as re-scheduled in less than a month's time but confusion over coronavirus protocols is still shrouding the event in confusion.

Here the PA news agency takes a look at the latest developments and the potential impact on British athletes as they prepare to begin to fly out to Japan earlier next month.

What is the latest situation regarding quarantine?

Olympics file photo
Confusion continues over Tokyo 2020 quarantine requirements (Adam Davy/PA)

Tokyo 2020 spokesperson Masa Takaya sparked alarm on Tuesday when he revealed that athletes are not currently exempt from a Japanese government requirement to quarantine six days if they are arriving from a red-list country such as the UK. Under the existing rules, athletes would be denied the ability to leave their hotel rooms to train and exercise, throwing their final preparations into chaos.

Are things going to change?
The Japanese government are scheduled to revisit the existing regulations on July 1. The IOC are lobbying hard for athletes, as well as other accredited members of the affected national delegations, to be exempted from hard-quarantine rules, and potentially submit instead to more stringent testing procedures during their respective stays in the Japanese capital.

What is life going to be like for athletes in Tokyo?

Athletes are unlikely to see much of Tokyo
Athletes are unlikely to see much of Tokyo (Eugene Hoshiko/AP)

The IOC made plain this week that athletes from all nations must abide by a series of stringent regulations or face the prospect of disqualification or even deportation. They must not leave their essential venues or interact physically with any members of the Japanese public. They must submit to daily testing and submit to social-distancing measures at all times, even including eating alone where possible.

What are the British Olympic Association doing to solve the problem?
The BOA has been working tirelessly to minimise disruption for the athletes, and maintained optimism that the current rules will not apply next month. IOC chiefs are also bullish that the potential restrictions can be worked around, but the Japanese government – possibly under pressure from a public who are reticent at best at the prospect of staging the Games – will make the decision with little scope for sentiment.

And what are the athletes saying?

Olympics Overview File Photo
Adam Peaty has demanded fairness from Tokyo organisers (Owen Humphreys/PA)

Having already been faced with a one-year postponement and swathes of their respective seasons locked out of training facilities, athletes can be forgiven for shrugging off the latest scare. Adam Peaty expressed broader concerns on Wednesday when he stressed that the IOC should work to ensure that no athlete has been nor will be incapacitated in a way which could benefit their rivals.

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A general view of Olympic rings following an outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in front of the Japan Olympics Museum in Tokyo, Japan March 24, 2020
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Team GB athletes facing six-day quarantine before Tokyo Games

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Olympic medal table header
CountryGold medalSilver MedalBronze MedalT
United StatesUnited States22251764
Olympics flagOlympic Athletes from Russia12211750
Great BritainGreat Britain11121235
Today's Olympic highlights header

Tuesday's key events

· Team GB duo Jack Laugher - silver medallist in Rio - and James Heatly take part in the men's 3m springboard semi-final (2am), and will hope to qualify for the final later in the day (7am)

· Two Britons are involved in the women's long jump final, but Abigail Irozuru and Jazmin Sawyers have their work cut out to get a spot on the podium (2.50am)
· Norwegian Karsten Warholm, who broke the world record just last month, goes for gold in the men's 400m hurdles final. USA's Rai Benjamin is expected to be his main challenger (4.20am)
· Great Britain have three representatives in the final of the women's 800m, with Jemma Reekie having perhaps the best chance of a medal (1.25pm)
· A mouth-watering women's 200m final sees Elaine Thompson-Herah go for the prestigious sprint double after claiming the 100m crown. Compatriot Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Namibia's Christine Mboma and USA's Gabrielle Thomas are expected to be her main competitors (1.50pm)

· The rescheduled women's skiff 49er FX (4.33am) and men's skiff 49er (5.33am) come to their conclusion, with Team GB involved in both medal races
· Defending champion Giles Scott bids for a second successive gold in the Finn class medal race (6.33am)
· There is another medal chance for Team GB in the mixed Nacra 17 medal race (7.33am)

· Team GB's Joe Fraser takes part in the parallel bars final, kicking off the final day of artistic gymnastics (9am)
· USA superstar Simone Biles, who has been forced to pull out of all of her finals so far, is on the starting list for the beam final as she bids for a fifth Olympic gold (9.50am)

· The men's semi-finals take place, with Mexico taking on Brazil first up (9am)
· The winner of that first semi-final will face either hosts Japan or Spain (2pm)

· Laura Kenny will look to win a third straight Olympic team pursuit gold medal. Team GB take on United States in their heat (7.44am), with the gold medal race later that day (9.26am)
· Laura's husband and fellow Olympic legend Jason Kenny will also look to continue his huge success in the men's team sprint - an event he has won gold in at every Games since 2008. Team GB will first need to get through the men's qualifying (7.58am), with the gold medal race ending the session (9.44am)

· Pat McCormack will be looking to achieve his dream of Olympic gold when he faces Cuba's Roniel Iglesias (11.05am)

> Today's schedule in full
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