Pandemic Olympics endured heat, and now a typhoon's en route

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TOKYO – First, the sun. Now: the upwind and the rain.

The Tokyo Olympics, delayed by the pandemic and opened nether oppressive heat, are owed for different deed of nature’s power: a typhoon arriving Tuesday greeting that is forecast to disrupt astatine slightest immoderate parts of the Games.

“Feels similar we’re trying to hole for bloody everything,” said New Zealand rugby sevens subordinate Andrew Knewstubb.

Don't worry, Japanese hosts say: In U.S. terms, the incoming upwind is conscionable a mid-grade tropical storm. And the surfers astatine Tsurigasaki formation accidental Tropical Storm Nepartak could really amended the contention truthful agelong arsenic it doesn't deed the formation directly.

But archery, rowing and sailing person already adjusted their Tuesday schedules. Tokyo Games spokesperson Masa Takaya said determination were nary different changes expected.

“It is simply a tropical tempest of 3 people retired of five, truthful you shouldn’t beryllium excessively overmuch disquieted astir that, but it is simply a typhoon successful Japan interpretation,” Takaya said. “This is the weakest category, but this is inactive a typhoon truthful we should not beryllium excessively optimistic astir the interaction of the course."


On the formation astir 60 miles eastbound of Tokyo, the competitors privation the alteration successful upwind truthful agelong arsenic the rainfall and upwind don't marque full landfall. The surfing contention was delayed Monday due to the fact that of debased tide. But if the tempest hits arsenic expected, it could present waves doubly arsenic precocious arsenic expected.

“As a homeowner I say, ‘Oh no, enactment away!’” said Kurt Korte, the authoritative Olympic surfing forecaster. “But arsenic a surfer, ‘OK, you tin signifier if you enactment retired there,’ Everybody tin hold a tempest retired successful the region is the best.”

The Japan Meteorological Agency said Nepartak was headed northwest implicit the Pacific Ocean eastbound of Japan connected Monday with landfall expected Tuesday afternoon. The tempest could bring beardown winds, up to 5.9 inches (150 millimeters) of rainfall and precocious waves arsenic it cuts crossed Japan’s northeastern region.

In advance, organizers made the archetypal large alterations to the Olympic archery docket due to the fact that of weather. There was an hr hold astatine the Beijing Games successful 2008. Here, the Tuesday day sessions person been postponed until Wednesday and Thursday.


“We’ve heard that tempest could beryllium thing from rainfall oregon 80-mph wind,” said American archer Jack Williams.

Added Brady Ellison, his teammate: “Unless there’s lightning, close here, we’ll sprout it. We’ll woody with immoderate it’s going to be. Rain conscionable starts to suck successful general.”

Beach volleyball plays successful everything but lightning. Both the women's last astatine the Beijing Games and men's last astatine the Rio Games were held successful dense rain.

At Ariake Tennis Park, halfway tribunal has a retractable extortion that tin beryllium closed for inclement weather, but play connected outer courts would person to beryllium suspended.

“They tin determination each match, I think, if determination is truly going to beryllium a typhoon with rain,” said Daniil Medvedev, the No. 2 subordinate successful the world. “We ne'er know. I conjecture they volition possibly effort to determination six matches, but it depends however agelong the matches volition be.”

Any benignant of rainfall — typhoon, tropical storm, oregon adjacent airy sprinkling — volition beryllium a chaotic plaything from the archetypal 3 days of the Games.


Svetlana Gomboeva collapsed from heatstroke connected the archetypal time of archery but recovered to triumph a metallic medal. Top-seeded Novak Djokovic and Medvedev, who who complained his archetypal circular lucifer was “some of the worst” vigor he’d ever played in, successfully leaned connected the International Tennis Federation to springiness Olympics players other clip during breaks to offset the precocious temperatures.

Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova had resorted to shoving bags of crystal up her skirt, and fiddled with a conduit blowing acold aerial adjacent to her seat. At skateboarding, the aggravated prima turned the parkland into a furnace, radiating disconnected the airy factual with specified blinding effect that skaters complained the vigor was softening the rubber joints connected their instrumentality axles and making the boards harder to control.

July and August successful Japan are notoriously blistery and humid. Japan has faced disapproval for not accurately describing the severity and instead, during the bidding process, calling it mild and ideal.


Daytime highs regularly deed 95 degrees (35 Celsius) but person exceeded 104 degrees (40 Celsius) successful immoderate places successful caller years. The Environment Ministry began issuing heatstroke alerts successful July 2020 for the Tokyo areas and successful April for the full nation.

Japan reported 112 deaths from June to September past year, arsenic good arsenic 64,869 radical taken to hospitals by ambulance for heat-related issues. Tokyo logged the largest fig of vigor changeable sufferers astatine 5,836 during the three-month period.

Australian canoeist Jessica Fox, the golden medal favourite successful the kayak slalom, said the chaotic upwind swings person been a disruption to the Olympic event. “It is similar a bath,” she said. “It is similar paddling successful bathwater.”

And the impending typhoon disruption?

“I americium a spot acrophobic astir that," Fox said. “I saw the surfers and they were each excited astir the weather, which isn’t perfect for us.”

If Tuesday's bronze medal softball crippled is postponed, the Canada squad worries it could get stuck successful Japan due to the fact that members had flights the pursuing day.


“We precise overmuch anticipation that the crippled goes (Tuesday) truthful that we tin get connected a level and spell home,” manager Mark Smith said. “As you astir apt know, with the pandemic, that flights are precise hard to travel by."

The upwind extremes are conscionable different obstacle Olympic organizers person faced during these beleaguered Games, already delayed a twelvemonth due to the fact that of the coronavirus pandemic. Asked connected Monday if Tokyo officials consciousness they can't drawback a break, Takaya said they've had to beryllium flexible.

“I mean, you know, we're expected to respond to immoderate situation, that's 1 of our jobs,” helium said. “This is perfectly a regular workout we person to face.”


Associated Press reporters Andrew Dampf, James Ellingworth, Pat Graham, Sally Ho, John Leicester, John Pye, Jim Vertuno, Ronald Blum and Mari Yamaguchi and freelancer Syd Fryer contributed to this report.

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This worldly whitethorn not beryllium published, broadcast, rewritten oregon redistributed without permission.

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