World Athletics president Sebastian Coe in an interview with the Asahi Newspaper, hinted he wants to give something special to Japan, possibly taking the World Championships to Tokyo.
“I have tremendous gratitude to Japan,” President Coe was quoted as saying. He felt that way because, according to him, Tokyo should be praised for “preparing a truly special stage on which our athletes could perform.”
He was making reference to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, which despite several setbacks from the COVID-19 pandemic, was held successfully from 24 July to 8 August.
“I promise to bring athletics back to Japan at a time when everyone can be a part of it,” added the World Athletics boss.
Coe did not give a timeline, but Eugene, USA, will host the 2022 edition of the World Championships 15-24 July, and Budapest 2023 is set for 18-27 August. Japan hosted the Osaka 2007 World Championships 14 years ago.
Coe said he has already spoken to Tokyo’s Governor Yuriko Koike and Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Minister Koichi Hagiuda. He also had a conversation with the commissioner of the Japan Sports Agency.
“All of them were focused on the legacy that athletics can leave behind in Tokyo and expressed the desire to make use of the Olympic Stadium,” Coe said.
The issue of warm-up track would need to be solved, as the Olympics solution was a temporary one.