The 2020 Olympics have been postponed due to the COVID pandemic that has swept the world and disrupted many sporting events. Since then, we have all been sitting, waiting to hear how the pandemic would affect the qualification criteria..
The pandemic hit shortly after the beginning of the third qualifying period, putting a halt to all the remaining events that athletes needed to compete in to qualify for the Olympics.
Athletes had to compete in six events over three qualifying periods. Their top four robi points scores from those events would have counted towards their ranking.
Even though some athletes had competed in their six events and were set to qualify, now the International Weightlifting Federation (IWF) has released a statement with revised qualification criteria:
“All weightlifters wishing to qualify for Tokyo 2020 will now be required to compete in at least one of the specified competitions between 1 October 2020 and 30 April 2021. This will also ensure they are subjected to any in-competition doping controls applied by the International Testing Agency.”
Obviously this is all under the assumption that international travel will be back up and running by the 1st of October.
The two major competitions that the Oceanian athletes missed out on are Junior Worlds and theOceania Champs, which were meant to be held in Nauru. Given Nauru is such a remote island and the relative difficulty to travel there, we would assume the Oceania Champs could be moved to a larger, more accessible location.
We would also assume that the organisers would allow for as much time as possible for the pandemic to settle down, and give the athletes enough time to resume a normal training schedule before the event. So we would expect these dates to be set for early 2021, with the possibility that the 2020 Oceania Champs will be scrapped altogether.
These are, of course, just our assumptions, as there has not been a lot of communication coming out of the IWF or AWF about competitions and qualifying.