Saudi Arabia’s Green Falcons fly to St. Petersburg ahead of World Cup 

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The Saudi Green Falcons pose for a souvenir picture with the crew of a Saudi Arabian Airlines plane at a German airport on Saturday before taking off for St. Petersburg in Russia for the World Cup. (Twitter photo)
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The Saudi Green Falcons pose for a souvenir picture with the crew of a Saudi Arabian Airlines plane at a German airport on Saturday before taking off for St. Petersburg in Russia for the World Cup. (Twitter photo)
Updated 10 June 2018

Saudi Arabia’s Green Falcons fly to St. Petersburg ahead of World Cup 

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia's Green Falcons flew to Russia on Saturday after finishing their World Cup preparations. 

A tweet on the national team’s official account made the announcement: “We are here!” accompanied with a photo that says “ Hello Russia”.

The team has left for St. Petersburg after completing their World Cup preparations, with a 2-1 reversal, against Germany on Friday night and now nerves will be starting to jangle ahead of the tournament curtain-raiser.

Several pictures on the Twitter account showed the Saudi delegation in formal attire as they snapped selfies outside the national carrier airplane, breaking the design of a falcon with a body of the Saudi flag.  

Saudi Arabia’s national squad will play the opening game of the World Cup against host country Russia.  

Saudi Arabia are the second lowest ranked side in the World Cup — Russia are the lowest at 70 — so expectations are low, but with Egypt not in great form and without Mohamed Salah for at least some of the group stage, there is a feeling the Green Falcons could seriously contend for the second spot in the group behind Uruguay.


Tokyo 2020 organizers estimate Games postponement cost $1.9b

Updated 20 min 10 sec ago

Tokyo 2020 organizers estimate Games postponement cost $1.9b

  • The International Olympic Committee and the Japanese government were forced to put off the Games for a year in March
  • The organizing committee will decide on a breakdown of the burden of the delay in December

TOKYO: This year’s postponement of the Tokyo Olympics because of the novel coronavirus cost about 200 billion yen ($1.9 billion) orgainsers have estimated, the Yomiuri newspaper reported on Sunday, citing people involved with the event.
The International Olympic Committee and the Japanese government were forced to put off the Games for a year in March as the coronavirus spread rapidly around the world.
The Games cost 1.35 trillion yen ($13 billion) before the postponement, the newspaper reported.
A spokesman for the organizers was not immediately available for comment.
The organizing committee will decide on a breakdown of the burden of the delay in December, after discussions between the committee, the Tokyo metropolitan government and the central government, the newspaper said.
The postponement costs include payment to staff as well as the introduction of new systems for refunding tickets but do not include measures against the spread of the coronavirus, the newspaper said.
The organizers had originally estimated that the delay would cost nearly 300 billion yen but they were able to reduce that figure by simplifying some events, the report said.