Tokyo to host 2020 Summer Olympics

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Olympic rings: Photo by Jodi Mullen via Flickr

The IOC selected Tokyo to host the 2020 Summer Olympics last night, over fellow challengers Madrid and Istanbul.

Madrid was eliminated from the process first, for Tokyo to then almost double Istanbul’s votes in the final round.

Out of the three finalists, Tokyo was the only city to have previously hosted an Olympic Games, back in 1964.

Both Tokyo and Madrid bid for the 2016 Games, but lost out to Rio, while Istanbul skipped participation in 2016, but put themselves up as a candidate city from 2000 to 2012, all of course unsuccessful.

IOC President Jacques Rogge spoke of the selection: “Congratulations to the city of Tokyo on its election as host of the 2020 Olympic Games.

“Tokyo presented a very strong technical bid from the outset – and it needed to in competition with two such high-calibre bids from Istanbul and Madrid. 

“All three cities were capable of staging excellent Games in 2020, but in the end it was Tokyo’s bid that resonated the most with the IOC membership, inviting us to “discover tomorrow” by delivering a well-organised and safe Games that will reinforce the Olympic values while demonstrating the benefits of sport to a new generation.”

Initially, five cities put themselves forward to host the 2020 Games; Istanbul, Tokyo, Baku, Doha and Madrid, but after stringent assessments, five were whittled down to three.

Applicants are measured against a set of 15 technical criteria before they could be accepted as a candidate city: vision and legacy, Games concept and competition venus, Olympic village(s), IBC/MPS, sport experience, environment and meteorology, accommodation, transport, medical services and doping control, safety and security, telecommunications, energy, legal aspects and customs and immigration formalities, government and public support, and finally finance and marketing.

Yesterday’s voting went as follows:

Round 1:
Tokyo 42
Istanbul 26
Madrid 26

Round 1 tie-breaker:
Istanbul 49
Madrid 45

Round 2:
Tokyo 60
Istanbul 36

Athletes aired their support for Tokyo on Twitter: