"It was a bit of surprise", 2020 Olympics head talks about IOC plan to move marathon to Hokkaido
VIDEO SHOWS: TOKYO 2020 PRESIDENT YOSHIRO MORI ARRIVING NEWS CONFERENCE, SOUNDBITES OF MORI SHOWS: TOKYO, JAPAN (OCTOBER 17, 2019) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1.
TOKYO 2020 PRESIDENT, YOSHIRO MORI, ARRIVING AT NEWS CONFERENCE 2.
NEWS CONFERENCE 3.
(SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) TOKYO 2020 PRESIDENT, YOSHIRO MORI, SAYING: "Honestly, I think the plan (of changing marathon and race-walking from Tokyo to Sapporo) is a bit of surprise.
To be frank with you, we received this news just before the beginning of last weekend." 4.
NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS 5.
(SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) TOKYO 2020 PRESIDENT, YOSHIRO MORI, SAYING: "We are still discussing and thinking of ways to deal with heat and (IOC President) Bach submitted this idea.
I think he proposed the idea now because of the recent world championship marathon in Doha" 6.
JOURNALIST ASKING QUESTION 7.
(SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) TOKYO 2020 PRESIDENT, YOSHIRO MORI, SAYING: "(I heard) this is a decision made by the IOC President.
President Bach had no choice but to move to Hokkaido." 8.
MORI LEAVING STORY: Tokyo has little choice but to accept an International Olympic Committee (IOC) move to shift the 2020 marathon to a cooler northern island in Japan despite opposition to the plan in the capital, Yoshiro Mori, the president of Tokyo 2020 Olympics said on Thursday (October 17).
The IOC on Wednesday announced a plan to move the marathon and race walking events to Japan's northern Hokkaido island because of worries about heat in Tokyo next summer.
"Honestly, I think the plan is a bit of surprise" Mori told reporters and explained why IOC President Bach made his decision.
"Of course, it's because of the recent world championship marathon in Doha" Mori's comments come after Japanese government and Tokyo officials earlier said they want to discuss what they have referred to as an IOC proposal at a coordination commission meeting planned at the end of this month.
(Production: Akira Tomoshige, Hideto Sakai, Akiko Okamoto)