National committees have final say on qualified athletes for Tokyo Games

Countdown clocks for the opening of Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games that are covered with banners after the Games were postponed due to the COVID 19 pandemic. (REUTERS)
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Updated 03 April 2020

National committees have final say on qualified athletes for Tokyo Games

  • The Games were postponed by a year to 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic

ATHENS: Athletes already qualified for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics will need to be picked again by their respective National Olympic Committees to compete at the postponed Games in 2021, the International Olympic Committee said on Thursday.

The IOC and Japanese government succumbed to intense pressure from athletes and sporting bodies around the world last week by agreeing to postpone the Games by a year to 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“All of the qualifications that have been achieved by National Olympic Committees and individual athletes remain in place,” IOC Sports Director Kit McConnell said in a conference call.”

Any athlete needs to be individually selected because they represent their NOC. In all sports the NOC retains the right to select the athletes. 

“Some 57 percent of the 11,000 athletes had already qualified for the Tokyo Games before qualification tournaments were scrapped as the virus spread in recent months.

“The IOC is also efforting to make the athletes’ village available again after it was planned to be sold off as apartments after this year’s Games.”

“The village is part of the first priority,” the IOC’s Olympic Games Executive Director Christophe Dubi said.

“The village is the home away from home, a fantastic development. It is one of the very first tasks to re-secure this fantastic property. Yes, it is absolutely on that urgency list.” 

Dubi said those first priority venues, including the dozens of sports venues, convention sites and thousands of hotel rooms, would need to be re-secured quickly. 

“All of this has to be re-secured for one year later,” Dubi said. “It is a massive undertaking to get back to fundamentals.” He added that the IOC planned to have finalised talks for those “priority” locations in a matter of weeks.


WWE names Bandar Al-Mashhadi MENA Vice President and General Manager

Updated 04 June 2020

WWE names Bandar Al-Mashhadi MENA Vice President and General Manager

  • Al-Mashhadi will lead WWE’s strategic business initiatives and day-to-day operations in the MENA region
  • He will also manage local operations for the company’s 10-year partnership with the Saudi General Entertainment Authority

RIYADH: WWE announced on Thursday the appointment of Bandar Al-Mashhadi as the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Vice President and General Manager.  

Al-Mashhadi will lead WWE’s strategic business initiatives and day-to-day operations in the MENA region and work with partners across all of WWE’s lines of business, including television, live events, marketing, sponsorship, advanced media, licensing and merchandising. He will also manage local operations for the company’s 10-year partnership with the Saudi General Entertainment Authority.

“We are excited to welcome Bandar to our international leadership team and confident that his experience in managing successful partnerships in Saudi Arabia and the Middle East will have a significant impact on WWE’s continued growth,” said James Rosenstock, WWE Executive Vice President, International. “We look forward to Bandar leading WWE’s efforts in this important region for our company.”

Al-Mashhadi has more than 20 years of experience as an executive in Saudi-based companies. He spent the past six years at OSN, most recently as Managing Director, leading implementation of the broadcaster’s corporate strategy in Saudi Arabia. During this time he also served a one-year deployment as Advisor to the Minister of Media in Saudi Arabia, leading multiple Vision 2030 initiatives including the privatization of the Saudi News Network.

Earlier in his career, Al Mashhadi spent more than a decade at BAE Systems in Saudi Arabia, rising to Director of Portfolio Management and undertaking strategic leadership placements with joint venture partners.