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Return of the Rings

By Ethan Chung

Another disappointment that happened, or did not happen this past summer, was the 2020 Summer Olympics. The athletic spectacle that happens every four years was unfortunately pushed off like never before to the summer of 2021 due to the global rise of COVID-19 cases.

Tokyo, the host city, was trying to renovate and reuse Olympic caliber stadiums from the 1964 summer Olympics. Considering Japan’s history of isolationism, the 1964 Olympic Games radically changed the country. The 2021 Olympics will again prove to be innovative as the coronavirus has been a threat to nations.

Like most professional sporting events, fans are either limited or prohibited in the stadium to cheer on their favorite teams. Many countries like Japan have borders that prohibit travel, so fans from all over the world will most likely not be able to attend and support their countries. However, how different will the upcoming Olympics look? The professional athletes will most certainly feel the change in the environment that they are playing in. Unlike performing under the spotlight and stares of millions, they suddenly have to play in a barren atmosphere. Every athlete knows the adrenaline rush invoked by the crowd when the players are out giving it their best.

Artwork by Sabeena Ramdarie, @jammin_with_jelly

Fans await the 2021 Summer Olympics in Tokyo after a challenging year.

“It is going to be a weird experience without fans. It is weird on a high school, college, professional, and even national level, to have no crowd cheering you on,” says senior Joel Philipose.

As seen on television, professional sporting events have fake crowd noises and oftentimes cardboard cutouts of fans to attempt to mimic the environment as if fans were there. Spectators can only imagine what playing under these new, unfamiliar conditions is like.

“I think the Olympics are going to be amazing this year, despite all the challenges. The board that sets it up is full of smart people, and I think they are going to come up with a plan that allows for fans across the world to be involved like they are in normal years,” said senior Daniyal Azeem.

In addition to the athlete’s struggle with adjusting to the new playing field, spectators suffer a devastating loss, too. While the Olympics only occur every four years, it often acts as an extraordinary catalyst that helps the economy by bringing positive attention to the country.

However, due to the coronavirus and the restrictions on venue capacity, millions of fans are stripped of the chance to travel and take a vacation in Tokyo. With the virus rampaging around the world, there is no doubt that everyone has been affected.

Despite all the negatives, millions of people are thankful for the opportunity to have sports and the Olympics happening, especially under the different circumstances this year has brought forward.


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