Tokyo Olympics rowing rescheduled over tropical storm

The peloton rides during the men's cycling road race during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games as they enter the Fuji International Speedway in Oyama, Japan, on July 24, 2021.

Tokyo, Japan |Tokyo Olympic organisers brought forward rowing events as a "protective measure" Saturday as a tropical storm heads towards the Japanese capital.

Tropical Storm Nepartak, with gusts up to 90 kilometres (56 miles) per hour, was still about 1,800 kilometres south of Tokyo on Saturday, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.

But it is on course to arrive in the Olympic host city by Tuesday, the weather agency said.

Olympic organisers said they were following the track of the storm and had decided to hold rowing events scheduled for Monday over the weekend instead.

"Unlike an earthquake, we're able to predict the path of a typhoon so we're able to prepare in advance," Tokyo 2020 spokesman Masa Takaya told reporters.

"In the case of rowing, as a protective measure we have decided to change the event schedule," he added.

"We're looking closely at the path of the typhoon," Takaya said, warning it could pose a danger if it makes landfall.

"We will take responsible measures," he said.

In a weather update, World Sailing warned that Olympic competition "from the 26th to the 28th may be affected", though organisers have not yet announced any changes.

Japan's typhoon season runs from around May to October, peaking in August and September.

Storms have disrupted sport in the country before.

In 2019, Typhoon Hagibis hit as Japan hosted the Rugby World Cup.

The powerful storm killed more than 100 people, and forced World Cup organisers to cancel three pool matches.

The Olympics opened on Friday after a year-long pandemic delay and will run until August 8.

© Agence France-Presse

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