— Published 11 February 2021

The Olympic qualification in question

Everything gets complicated. Just over 160 days before the alleged opening of the Tokyo Games (July 23rd to August 8th), the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) has slashed the schedule of qualifying competitions for the Olympic tournament again. They announced the cancellation of two of the four stages of the Artistic Gymnastics World Cup, scheduled for Stuttgart, Germany, and Birmingham, Great Britain. Originally, four competitions made up the World Cup program. They were scheduled between March and April 2020 in Milwaukee (United States), Stuttgart, Birmingham and Tokyo. They have been postponed due to the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. The American stage was able to take place last year, but the German and British events are now off the calendar. The Tokyo World Cup, for its part, is still being held. It should normally be held on May 4th and serve as a pre-Olympic test. The FIG said in a press release: the cancellation of the stages in Stuttgart and Birmingham requires it to review the quota allocation rules for the Tokyo Games. The regulations stipulated that at least three competitions had to take place to validate the results of the series as qualifying events for Tokyo 2020. The three Olympic places associated with this series, in both men’s and women’s artistic gymnastics, must therefore be reallocated. Among women, Russia, China and Japan gain an individual non-nominative place. For men, they will go to the United States, China and Russia. To date, 82 of the 98 places in men’s artistic gymnastics, and 84 of the 98 places in women’s artistic gymnastics, have already been allocated. The places remaining in the game will be decided by the series of World Cups by apparatus – the last stage of which is scheduled for March 10th to 13th in Doha – and by the continental championships.