The Hong Kong Judo Association (HKJA) hopes to hold an event that will count towards Olympic qualification after raising concerns about the impact of the COVID-19 in the chances of its athletes to secure a place in Tokyo 2020.
The president of the HKJA, Wong Po-keehe said to South China Morning Post that the organization plans to organize a competition in February or March using a “security bubble,” pending government approval.
The bubble, part of the protocol COVID-19 from International Judo Federation (IJF), It would grant international athletes traveling for the event an exemption from the two-week quarantine measures in force in the country.
“The biggest problem remains that if we invite foreign competitors to Hong Kong, they will face a minimum two-week quarantine according to current health practice,” Wong said.
“If we can’t lift that quarantine requirement, I’m sure we won’t be able to have an international tournament.”
“If the government can accept this security feature and lift the quarantine requirement for overseas arrivals, we may be able to come up with a successful plan.”
Po-Sum Leung, 9th in the World Rankings.
Travel restrictions imposed around the world in response to the pandemic have generated growing concern in numerous sports about how athletes may qualify for the postponed Olympic Games in Tokyo 2020.
Wong said it would be difficult for Hong Kong judokas to compete in tournaments that count towards the ranking of the IJF, which is used to determine Olympic quota locations, as most will take place in Europe.
Po-Sum Leung, ninth in the women’s under 57 kilogram classification, is the main hope of Hong Kong to seal a judo square in Tokyo 2020, and Wong said that the HKJA He hoped to be able to participate in competitions in Europe to increase his chances. of qualification.
“We are planning to send Leung to Europe next year, but it is very difficult to leave Hong Kong these days under quarantine requirements, both for Hong Kong and overseas countries,” Wong said.
“If she can’t compete anymore, she can be outclassed by other judokas in the region.”
“Having a qualifying event in Hong Kong will help safeguard its position.”
Under the IJF’s revised process for Tokyo 2020, athletes have until June 28 of next year to earn qualification points.
The IJF was forced to delay her deadline as a result of the decision to postpone Tokyo 2020 a 2021.
The pandemic of coronavirus reduced dozens of judo events and led to the early abandonment of the 2020 season of the World Tour.
SOURCE: Liam Morgan